Sir Rod Stewart recently made headlines after he suggested menopause courses for men would be a “very good road to follow”to help husbands and partners better understand the disease. The singer had seen his wife, Penny Lancaster, struggle with severe symptoms.
However, food and beverage brands also have a lot to learn. So thinks beverage company HotTea Mama. She created specialty blends aimed at postmenopausal women after spotting a gap in the market for products targeting this issue.
The company has also joined GenM, an organization aimed at helping brands recognize and meet the needs of perimenopausal and menopausal women in the UK, who it estimates number 15.5 million. GenM has won over 40 partners so far, including retailers Boots, Holland & Barrett and M&S. They are committed to a series of intentions to improve the menopause experience for consumers. These actions include better representation of menopause in product development, signage and marketing campaigns, and using their platforms to “normalize the conversation surrounding menopause.”
Menopause is a natural stage of aging that usually occurs between the ages of 45 and 55, when a woman’s estrogen levels decline. According to the UK’s National Health Service, the average age for a woman to reach menopause is 51, although around 1 in 100 women go through menopause before the age of 40. Most will have symptoms such as hot flashes and night sweats. According to GenM, however, there are actually up to 48 symptoms of menopause. Some of them can be quite serious and have a significant impact on day-to-day activities.
The menopause market has always been underserved by brands, claimed GenM founders Sam Simister and Heather Jackson. The couple launched GenM to support and improve the menopause experience. They said that after reaching menopause themselves, they were shocked by the lack of signaling of menopause-specific or menopause-friendly products.
GenM said their research found that 51% of women can only name three out of 48 potential symptoms of menopause.
“Menopause is often categorized as just a medical issue, or a gender issue, or a labor issue, but it’s more than that – it affects everything,”said Jackson. “And our response, too, must be greater than the sum of its parts. Menopause can change every aspect of your life – from what you eat and drink to the clothes you wear or even the cosmetics you have to use. Anyone who’s sweated layers of makeup during a hot flash would agree!”Have
Companies must therefore better understand, support and respond to the needs of menopause, she tells us. “This involves new menopause-friendly products, but as many people going through menopause are very busy and short on time, it also requires clear and easy signposting of products that already exist, such as Boots’ Menopause Hub.”Have
GenM asks brands to consider the 48 symptoms of menopause and identify products from their current products or services that might support any of these symptoms. Jackson said this includes new product development, improved signage of existing products, better campaigns and marketing that reflect menopause, improved workplace policy, increased awareness and information for people.
“It’s all part of the work that needs to be done,” she explained. “This is why GenM believes that menopause is a business issue rather than just a medical issue, a workplace issue, or even a gender issue. When working with its founding partners, GenM works with business leaders and executives because menopause should be taken seriously across the entire organization, from marketing and communications to HR, merchandising to product development. .Have
HotTea Mama’s Menopause Tea is specially blended to support the body through the difficult transition of menopause from perimenopause to post-menopause. The brand has selected natural herbs that have been used for millennia to relieve some of the most common symptoms – from irregular periods and heavy blood flow to anxiety, lack of sleep and hot flashes. These include Raspberry Leaf, which she claims can reduce heavy menstrual flow; ginseng, believed to improve mood swings and increase sleep duration and quality; Gingko Biloba, believed to improve blood circulation and cognitive functions; Licorice, which she says can help reduce the onset and duration of hot flashes; and valerian, which she says reduces stress and anxiety, aids sleep.
The brand’s founder, Bethan Thomas, an Oxford graduate, told FoodNavigator that each ingredient was selected with a functional purpose in mind, but in combination they create a refreshing, plant-based blend that’s best enjoyed chilled if you suffer from hot flashes. “I have a degree in tea science and when my friend Kate was pregnant she often asked me for advice on what to drink,”she says. “I would draw on my knowledge to recommend herbs and blends that might help her with morning sickness or a satisfying replacement for caffeinated beverages. This research also helped me when I was expecting my first child. We kept wondering why nobody offers this type of product, we didn’t have an answer, but we loved the concept.Have
She added that the natural herbs in her menopause tea had been “Used for millennia to relieve some of the most common symptoms of menopause, and we are always on the lookout for new, innovative solutions to add to our line. We also recognize the need to raise awareness and educate all sections of society about how this stage of life affects people. By doing this, we can change perceptions about menopause and help millions of women and others lead healthier, happier lives.Have
HotTea Mama sells three million award-winning tea bags a year, a fact that demonstrates that women are looking for alternative and healthy ways to support their reproductive health, said the founder. “Our customers have come to us asking for information on PCOS, fertility, endometriosis, PMS and menopause, and we have seen that there is a gap in the market for a product or two targeting these issues” ,she added.
Menopause “can affect all areas of life and we must commit to it on all fronts”,Jackson continued.
GenM further claimed that their research shows that 87% of postmenopausal women feel ignored by both brands and society at large. For many, these are brands they’ve been loyal to all their lives.. “GenM thinks it’s not enough – we deserve better”,said the co-founder. “With 15.5 million women in the UK going through menopause and estimates of 1 billion worldwide by 2025, menopause deserves more. Brands and organizations have a huge role to play here that cannot be underestimated. “Have