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Presented by: UT El Paso / Austin Cooperative Pharmacy Program & Paso del Norte Health Foundation

The top selling Herbal products in the U .S.

The surge in the popularity of herbal and other natural products is not a “passing fad”. On the contrary, it continues to rise. In the United States, herbal dietary supplement retail sales were more than six billion dollars for the year 2015, reaching an all time high, according a report from the American Botanical Council’s Herbalgram journal (Tyler et al., 2015). The report states that retail sales of herbal supplements reached approximately $6.92 billion dollars, which marks a 7.5% increase in sales compared to 2014.

However, in 2016, consumers spent an estimated $7.452 billion on herbal supplements, an increase of approximately $530 million from the preceding year. These figures represent a 13-year streak in uninterrupted growth for various herbal products (Smith et al., 2017).

However, through the years, there has been variability in the total sales growth for diverse herbal products, according to the different market channels. For example, there was a 2.2% increase for 2012 in the mainstream market, or retail food, drug, and mass-market stores (FDM). On the other hand, there was a much larger increase (6.1%) in sales in natural herbal product stores, the so-called “natural channel” (Blumenthal et al., 2012). Blumenthal M, Lindstrom A, Ooyen C, Lynch ME. Herb supplement sales increase 4.5% in 2011. HerbalGram. 2012; 95:60-64.

According to the American Botanical Council’s report on U.S. mainstream market herbal supplement sales for 2016 (Smith et al., 2017) , the top 40 best selling herbs / supplements, by common and scientific name were as follows:

  1. Horehound (Marrubium vulgare)
  2. Cranberry  (Vaccinium macrocarpon)
  3. Echinacea (Echinacea spp.)
  4. Garcinia  (Garcinia cambogia)
  5. Green tea  (Camellia sinensis)
  6. Black cohosh  (Actaea racemosa)
  7. Flaxseed and/or oil  (Linum usitatissimum)
  8. Ginger  (Zingiber officinale)
  9. Valerian  (Valeriana officinalis)
  10.  Turmeric (Curcuma longa)
  11.  Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
  12.  Fenugreek  (Trigonella foenum- graecum)
  13. Yohimbe (Pausinystalia johimbe)
  14.  Aloe (Aloe spp.)
  15.  Saw palmetto (Serenoa repens)
  16.  Milk thistle (Silybum marianum)
  17.  Garlic (Allium sativum)
  18.  Coconut oil  (Cocos nucifera)
  19.  Elderberry  (Sambucus nigrum)
  20.  Cinnamon  (Cinnamomum spp.)
  21.  Green Coffee Extract (Coffea arabica)
  22.  Boswellia (Boswellia serrata)
  23.  Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)
  24.  Plant Sterols (phytochemical compounds)
  25.  Senna (Senna alexandrina)
  26.  Açaí berry (Euterpe oleracea)
  1. Guaraná (Paullinia cupana)
  2.  Rhodiola (Rhodiola spp.)
  3. Bioflavonoid Complex (phytochemical compounds)
  4. Red Yeast Rice (Oryza sativa)
  5.  Ginseng (Panax spp.)
  6.  Horny Goat Weed (Epimedium spp.)
  7.  Yerba Mate (Ilex paraguariensis )
  8.  Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)
  9.  Beta Glucans (phytochemical compounds)
  10. Maca (Lepidium meyenii)
  11. St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum )
  12. Wheatgrass (Triticum aestivum) / Barley (Hordeum vulgare)
  13. Goji Berry (Lycium barbarum / L. chinense )
  14. Chía Seed / Oil (Salvia hispanica)

“Consumers spent an estimated $7.452 billion on herbal supplements in 2016, an increase of approximately $530 million from 2015. This marks the 13th consecutive year of overall sales growth for herbal supplements and the first time that total US retail sales of these products have surpassed $7 billion”.

Source: Smith T, Kawa K, Eckl V, Morton C, Stredneyd, R. Sales of Herbal Dietary Supplements in US Increased 7.7% in 2016. HerbalGram. 2017; American Botanical Council.