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Wellness Consumption Is Highly Segregated By Income, Age

As a follow up to last issue’s Wellness Brand Recognition Survey, The Unwinder has generated original data on who is purchasing wellness products and services.

400 Americans were surveyed on their habits regarding wellness products:

U.S. consumer purchase of supplements, plant-based meats, alternative milks, online therapy

These numbers broadly align with the CDC’s recent claim of 57.6% of adults using supplements, and the Council for Responsible Nutrition’s figure of 76% from 2017.

Recent research also confirms that 31% of Americans have been in some form of therapy, though other sources have the number around 12%. Our numbers on alternative milks also broadly align with public data points.

Income Is The Biggest Determinant In The Use Of Wellness Products

Those making $150K or more annually show huge propensities for a wellness-focused lifestyle, with some uptake rates above 90%. Comparing this with those making under $75K paints a stark picture:

U.S. consumer purchase of supplements, plant-based meats, alternative milks, online therapy, by income

The implication for makers of wellness products should be obvious. The <$75K income category is more than half of all Americans – a massive group who needs and deserves wellness products made, priced, and marketed for them.

Wellness Is Peaking With Millennials, While Gen Z Likes Animal-Free But Not Supplements

U.S. consumer purchase of supplements, plant-based meats, alternative milks, online therapy, by age

No Big Differences By Racial ID

Using Pollfish’s demographic categories for respondents, we looked at the idea that “wellness is white” and found little evidence. After removing those who declined to provide this demographic info, we summed all those remaining. The biggest difference, in plant-based meat consumption, was driven by those identifying as Asian, who responded affirmatively at 67%. Use of online therapy tools was highest among Black and Hispanic + Latino respondents, at 39% and 37%, respectively.

U.S. consumer purchase of supplements, plant-based meats, alternative milks, online therapy, by racial identity

Wellness Is Not Evenly Distributed

There’s a famous saying in technology: the future is here, it’s just not yet evenly distributed. Based on this data, the same can be said for wellness. Income, education, and to a lesser extent age create big gaps in use of key wellness products like supplements, plant-based meats, and online therapy. While this data is extremely far from a complete picture, it does align with some well-covered trends.

Access to healthcare, particularly preventative healthcare like yearly physicals, is highly segmented by income. Certain lifestyle outcomes, up to and including health span and death, are also correlated to income.

The wellness industry is clearly making strides – with the young, and in racial demographic equity. It is understandable, in a world where things must cost money, that higher earners are more likely to buy wellness products. It is also clear, however, that a huge growth opportunity exists for wellness product makers among the less rich. And since “health is wealth”, this is no doubt an opportunity worth taking.

Wellness Industry News & Notes (October 20, 2021)

🏾 Wellness brand Golde, maker of superfood powders, collaborates with nail polish maker Olive & June to release custom nail polish inspired by Golde’s products

Canadian cannabis company High Tide has purchased UK-based Blessed CBD for ~9 million GBP in stock and cash, representing a 4x EBITDA multiple.

🧑‍⚖️ California signed into law a bill formally legalizing CBD in food and beverage products, breaking with the FDA. Shares of Charlotte’s Web, among other CBD producers, shot up in response.

📸 The Bella Hadid effect is paying off, with press mentions (including highly valuable SEO-backlinks) and photographs of Kin Euphorics skyrocketing since her announcement as “co founder”.

bella hadid effect kin euphorics

🐄 A month old, but just coming to our attention – an August 2021 preprint paper from Patrick Brown, founder of Impossible Foods, finds that a rapid global phaseout of animal agriculture would reduce CO2 emissions by 68%. Plant-based may be the single most important thing we can do to halt global warming.

🧠 A new study suggests that transcranial magnetic stimulation, many devices for which are sold as wellness products on Amazon, may be useful for treatment resistant depression.

🚔 In a somewhat rare occurrence, criminal proceedings are initiated against U.S. supplement maker Blackstone Labs for misleading and improper supplement manufacturing practices, among other crimes.

💸 HumanCo, the part-holding company, part-SPAC from Hu founder Jason Karp, has raised another $35M. The rise of wellness-focused holding companies and SPACs is a strong reflection of the interest investors have in this space.

⚖️ Noting how crucial the business of wellness is, the NYT is out with projections that by 2030, half of American adults will be obese. Solving this is the single most important health and wellness challenge of today.

💦 Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop launches a libido-boosting supplement mixture called DTF (slang made famous by MTV’s Jersey Shore cast for “Down To F**k”). Goop’s marketing talents are one reason they are among The Unwinder’s top-recognized wellness brands.

🐶 Further in the never-ending celebrities-in-wellness trend, singer Pitbull has launched a wellness brand, 305-Life. The brand is selling water-soluble supplements, and was founded by marketers and entrepreneurs in Miami, alongside Pitbull.

Social Growth Leaderboard

Jessica Biel’s Kinderfarms is the fastest growing of our 200+ tracked wellness brand IG accounts for the second week in a row, in what was otherwise a fast-growth, top-loaded week as brands gear up marketing for the holiday season

For more wellness industry business news & analysis, subscribe for free to The Unwinder Pro newsletter here.

About the author

The Unwinder's Wellness Insider Newsletter is published every other week. You can sign up at https://the-unwinder.com/newsletter/

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