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Nutraceutical industry to hit $75 billion

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It seems Canadians aren't the only ones flocking to buy natural health products and dietary supplements

It seems Canadians aren't the only ones flocking to buy natural health products and dietary supplements. Our favourite herbs, homeopathics, vitamins and traditional medicines are part of a global nutraceutical market that hit $46.7 billion in 2002.

Since 1999, the international industry has increased an average seven per cent per year, according to an April 2003 report by market analysts Business Communications Company. From now on, it's expected to grow 9.9 per cent annually to hit $74.7 billion by 2007.

According to the Saskatchewan Nutraceutical Network, Canada represents only three per cent of the global market. Existing regulations define a nutraceutical "as a product that has been isolated or purified from foods and generally sold in medicinal forms not usually associated with food. Nutraceuticals have been shown to exhibit physiological benefits or provide protection against chronic disease." At the moment, the feds are attempting to create laws governing their safe use.

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