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Vivian Xie
18 Oct 2023

Ashwagandha and Herbal Medicines: Pharma’s Next Big Opportunity

Herbal medicines and nutraceuticals have seen a surge in interest since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. Driven by patient interest in prioritising personalised and integrative medicines, the herbal ingredients industry is now faced with concerns pertaining to regulations, quality control, supply chain disruptions, and sustainability efforts. 

Consumer health interests in herbal products have increased. In particular, Ashwagandha has soared in popularity with claims of treating symptoms related to stress and anxiety, cognition, memory, sexual dysfunction, and endurance. This increased demand for natural products like Ashwagandha has the industry keen to sustain supply, however these efforts are not without their specific challenges. The natural products supply chain is a much more fragile ecosystem. Top concerns for the industry include: 

  • Undisclosed adulteration of Ashwagandha root extract with other plant materials 

  • Inconsistent regulations for herbal medicines, botanicals, food supplements etc. 

  • Little to no financial incentive to invest in the submission of herbal extracts to government regulatory agencies 

  • Lack of clinical studies conducted on natural products and ingredients 

Additionally, the Ashwagandha supply chain must contend with its own challenges. Sustainability within the supply chain encompasses environmental factors as well as giving consideration for those that work in the farms and factories within the supply chain. KSM-66 Ashwagandha remains a prime example of building sustainable networks throughout the natural product supply chain in support of both the Earth and the people that inhabit it.  

While embracing natural products may be a trend and, in the words of Lisa-Maria Müllner, Research & Development, Team Lead: Development Food Supplements at Ringana, “are becoming stylish”, the power of Ashwagandha has been felt for centuries. Advocacy for Ashwagandha will only increase with more calls for scientifically backed evidence supporting treatment claims. Pharmaceutical giants like GSK, Bayer, Sanofi, and others are also taking notice, further propelling interest and investment in Ashwagandha as a therapeutic.  

Our latest Trend Report dives deeper into the market potential, challenges, and solutions for building a sustainable Ashwagandha supply chain and the future of this Ayurvedic root.  

Download your free Trend Report by clicking the button below.

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Shri Kartikeya Pharma
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Vivian Xie
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