Two-Thirds of Canadians Use Natural Products

More Canadians Turn to Vitamins and Minerals Than Flu Shots to Boost Immunity as Cold and Flu Season Approaches

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Vancouver, BC – More than two-thirds of Canadians use natural products and use seems likely to grow, according to a new Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of Alive Magazine this September.

In the past 12 months, 68% of Canadian adults have used one or more of the following natural products, with use of each detailed below:

  • Vitamins and minerals, 63%
  • Functional foods and beverages, 50%
  • Supplements, 36%
  • Natural household goods/cleaning products, 36%
  • Organic foods and beverages, 30%
  • Herbal/homeopathic remedies, 24%
  • Natural/organic personal care, 17%

In particular, many Canadians are turning to natural products to boost their immune systems. Our research revealed that when cold and flu season approaches, more than twice as many Canadians take vitamins and minerals (30%) than get a flu shot (12%) to help strengthen their immune system.

Among the one-third (32%) of Canadians who didn’t buy natural products in the past 12 months, expense appears to be the most common barrier, with fully eight-in-ten agreeing that the products are too expensive (81%).

Still, study results suggest that use of natural products is likely to grow in Canada in the future, with vitamins and minerals continuing to lead the way. Following are the percent of adult Canadians who are likely to consider buying each of the natural products in the future and how this compares to current past 12-month purchasing rates:

  • Vitamins and minerals, 79% (16 percentage points higher than current use)
  • Functional foods and beverages, 44% (6 percentage points lower than current use)
  • Supplements, 53% (17 percentage points higher than current use)
  • Natural household goods/cleaning products 55% (19 percentage points higher than current use)
  • Organic foods and beverages, 49% (19 percentage points higher than current use)
  • Herbal/homeopathic remedies, 37% (13 percentage points higher than current use)
  • Natural/organic personal care, 38% (21 percentage points higher than current use)

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted between September 16 and September 26, 2010, on behalf of Alive Magazine. For this survey, a sample of 1,618 adults, 18 years and older from Ipsos' Canadian online epanel were interviewed online. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflects that of the adult population according to Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.

For more information on this news release, please contact:

Catherine Dawson
Senior Vice President
Ipsos Reid
(778) 373-5003

Ryan Benn
Executive Vice President and Group Publisher
Alive Magazine
(604) 295-9111

About Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader, the country's leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 600 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos Reid's marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos Reid offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey- based market research group.

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Member companies assess market potential and interpret market trends. They develop and build brands. They help clients build long-term relationships with their customers. They test advertising and study audience responses to various media. They measure public opinion around the globe. Ipsos member companies offer expertise in advertising, customer loyalty, marketing, media, and public affairs research, as well as forecasting, modeling, and consulting. Ipsos has a full line of custom, syndicated, omnibus, panel, and online research products and services, guided by industry experts and bolstered by advanced analytics and methodologies. The company was founded in 1975 and has been publicly traded since 1999. In 2009, Ipsos generated global revenues of €943.7 million ($1.33 billion U.S.).

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Two-Thirds of Canadians Use Natural Products


Michael Rodenburgh
Executive Vice President, Canada
Ipsos Marketing