BCAAs: An ace in sports nutrition’s 6 pack?

Published November 2018. Lumina Intelligence captured 319 BCAA-oriented products in 20 countries on all continents and found a lively, rapidly evolving sector offering great opportunity in formats, claims, blends and ratios between the three main BCAA forms: leucine, isoleucine and valine. We crunch data and examine drivers and trends in this key sports nutrition space.


What this report tells you:

  • The current picture in BCAAs. Where they stand compared to other protein forms, what the science currently says, and what the favoured BCAA ratios amongst consumers are.
  • Product analysis: What formulation, labelling and format trends  we are seeing for existing products.
  • Digital disruption: The importance of online, how BCAAs resonate with online consumers in different countries and channels for competing online.
  • Competitive landscape: Brands with BCAAs in their portfolios and leaders in consumer engagement. Includes case studies on key players.
  • Regional analysis, with deep dives on markets of particular interest e.g. China.
  • Conclusion and recommendations.

Quick facts:

  • With an average of 800 reviews and the score of 4.4 out of 5, BCAAs are the fast mover in Sports Nutrition, clocking up the highest average ratings and just behind protein powders in volume of reviews. BCAAs are advancing fast on both user engagement and excellent ratings. Other traditionally core sports nutrition categories like pre-workout supplements and nitric oxide boosters gained much less user engagement.
  • ‘Recovery’ and ‘increases muscle’ are two most common claims present on 24% of BCAA products across 20 research countries, with ‘improves performance’ (12%) and ‘endurance’ (9%) following.
  • BCAA products targeting women and the general consumer are performing more strongly, albeit from a lower base, especially in the case of female-focused products. Women remain rare targets for BCAAs products, but proportionally they contribute more reviews than men.

Preview – 2 slides of 59:


  • Global BCAAs Landscape & Product Analysis
  • Digital Disruption & The Rise of The Review
  • Competitive Landscape
    • Optimum Nutrition
    • Iovate Nutrition
  • Country Focus
    • China
    • Japan/South Korea/Austrailia
    • US
    • Brazil/Mexico
    • Europe
  • Conclusions
  • Appendix of Studies

Got questions about the sports nutrition market?

We examine the key players, trends and target consumers in 20 countries, as well as explore how Lumina can help you form a fact-based business or NPD strategy.