The ever-evolving supplement industry has experienced a significant shift over the years. While capsules, a traditional method, have remained popular, gummies have recently emerged as a trend that now seems to have solidified its position in the market.
But how do these two compare, and what are the differences between them? This guide aims to shed light on the unique characteristics of both, helping both newcomers and established brands in the supplement industry navigate their choices.
For consumers, the experience of consuming supplements plays a pivotal role in their preference. Gummies, characterised by their sweetness, often offer a pleasant, chewable alternative to capsules. This is especially appealing to individuals who may find swallowing capsules challenging, as well as children.
On the other hand, capsules present a quick and straightforward solution for intake. They frequently offer higher dosages of the active ingredients, making them a favourable option for those leading a busy life or seeking a higher concentration of a specific supplement.
Both gummies and capsules have distinct manufacturing challenges. Gummies, although delicious, don’t offer much room for active ingredients due to the need for various excipients. This poses a limitation for ingredients like whey protein, which requires a substantial amount to be effective. Consuming the necessary dosage would either involve a large quantity of gummies or an impractically large singular gummy.
Furthermore, gummies face challenges in flavour retention. Ingredients with potent tastes, such as turmeric, can overpower and potentially ruin the intended flavour. Capsules, conversely, do not grapple with this issue.
One of the unique advantages of capsules is the delayed-release mechanism, which aids in protecting ingredients sensitive to stomach acid.
Capsules also come in various types, each with its own characteristics:
– Hard gelatin capsules: Derived from collagenous material hydrolysis, gelatin is a natural, safe, and economical ingredient. They come in numerous sizes, from 000 to 5.
– HPMC capsules: These are stable at low humidity levels and are particularly suitable for moisture-sensitive and hygroscopic products. Their vegetarian nature makes them popular among nutraceuticals, dietary supplements, and herbal products.
– Fish gelatin capsules (Marinecaps): Made from fish gelatin, they are preferred for filling marine supplements like EPA-rich fish oil.
– Starch capsules: Created from potato starch, they have a moisture content ranging between 12–14% w/w.
– Pullulan capsules: Made from naturally fermented tapioca, they provide a high barrier against oxygen.
– Polyvinyl acetate (PVA) capsules: PVA capsules offer a high barrier to oxygen and are ideal for filling drugs dissolved in PEG 400.
– Liquid-filled hard capsules (LFHC): Suitable for non-aqueous liquid, paste, and hot melts. LFHC can be used for moisture-sensitive drugs and can also enhance bioavailability.
– Soft gelatin capsules (SGC): These have a soft, globular gelatin shell and require large-scale production methods for their preparation.
The Mental Factor
One’s perception of a supplement can play a significant role in its consistent consumption. Consider this: a towering bottle of capsules may appear daunting to many, especially those new to the supplement world. The sheer number of pills, along with their clinical appearance, can create a subconscious barrier, making the prospect of daily intake less inviting. This can, over time, make it challenging for individuals to integrate such supplements into their daily routines, affecting long-term adherence.
In contrast, gummies present an entirely different mental dynamic. Their candy-like appearance, enjoyable taste, and chewy texture make them more reminiscent of a treat rather than a health supplement. Consequently, they seamlessly fit into daily routines, often becoming a delightful daily ritual that many anticipate. This enjoyable experience can foster a positive association, transforming the task of taking daily supplements from a chore into a pleasure. The mental ease with gummies might well be one of their strongest selling points, especially in an era where user experience is paramount.
Gummies vs Capsules – The Verdict
Both gummies and capsules offer unique advantages and considerations in the realm of supplements. While capsules have been a long-standing choice due to their ability to deliver concentrated dosages and versatility, gummies have gained significant traction due to their consumer-friendly taste and texture.
Beyond the mere physical properties, the mental perception and user experience play a crucial role in an individual’s preference. As the supplement industry continues to evolve, understanding the nuances of these delivery methods will be paramount for brands aiming to cater to diverse consumer needs and preferences. As always, informed choices and a keen understanding of one’s target audience will pave the way for success in this dynamic market.
With over 20 years of experience in formulations, Supplement Factory stands as an authority in the industry. Our R&D package is tailored to assist brands in crafting successful Gummies and Capsules to their needs. This comprehensive package provides you with a custom formulation that’s fully yours, with no limitations on manufacturer choice. Discover more about our services here.
At Supplement Factory, we firmly believe that your success is our success. Our dedication is rooted in assisting you in creating and nurturing a successful brand. Contact us to start your journey to success.