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COLLINGWOOD, New Zealand, March 5, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- New Zealand based company, HealthPost, began life over 25 years ago as a mail-order catalog business re-selling third party health supplements. While this is a tradition they continue to this day, the business has undergone radical change in the quarter century since it opened. Most notably, HealthPost has begun manufacturing a comprehensive range of 'own-label' supplements under their own 'BioBalance' brand. Executive Director, Abel Butler, credits this decision to the advent of online shopping, and an increased focus on being at the cutting edge of consumer demand.
"As New Zealand's largest online natural health products retailer, we've got a well-trafficked website and a reputation as the 'go to' destination for supplements representing the latest trends and research. All of this consumer activity generates a large amount of data, which we are now using in turn to develop our own products where we see the market isn't being well catered to by existing suppliers. While this still only represents a small proportion of our overall sales, we're really excited about being able to offer our customers ground-breaking health products which they simply wouldn't have access to otherwise."
What exactly are these trends and products which consumers can only access through HealthPost? "Our current focus is on superfoods and certified organic products," says Butler. "We're committed to sourcing the best quality products we can by going right back to the source – and ideally making a difference to local communities in the process." One example of this is their BioBalance Certified Organic Virgin Coconut Oil, sourced directly from local producers in Sri Lanka. Another is BioBalance Certified Organic Argan Oil, produced and sold by a Moroccan Women's Collective. When queried as to the emphasis on superfoods over more traditional capsule/tablet-type supplements, Butler had this to say:
"It really depends on the specific product. Capsule/tablet-form supplements will always have their place. That said, there's recently been a groundswell of acknowledgement that 'wholefood form' health products have distinct benefits sometimes absent from highly processed or synthesized vitamin supplements. This is really an acknowledgement that nature typically gets it right in the first place, and that there's often little need for a quality ingredient to undergo extensive processing to deliver maximum benefit. Superfoods such as Chia Seeds, Coconut Oil and Cacao are not only packed with nutritional value, but are in a form that's likely to be readily recognized and assimilated by the human digestive system."
Asked what he thinks is driving this trend towards people getting their health boost from seeds and oils instead of pills and potions, Butler says it's really quite simple. "It's consumers who are driving this trend and most supplement companies, ourselves included, are playing catch-up. The trend itself is only one part of a larger trend, which is the movement away from artificial, highly-processed foods towards much more simple, wholesome ways of looking after ourselves. We're glad to be able to play our part in this by making top quality superfoods available to the many rather than the few."
With that being said, and so-called "functional ingredients" showing up in everything from juice to chocolate, it seems the superfoods craze isn't going to go away anytime soon. For one New Zealand company working hard to keep ahead of the fickle and ever-changing trends in consumer demand, this can only be a good thing.