Cookie policy: This site uses cookies (small files stored on your computer) to simplify and improve your experience of this website. Cookies are small text files stored on the device you are using to access this website. For more information please take a look at our terms and conditions. Some parts of the site may not work properly if you choose not to accept cookies.

Join

Subscribe or Register

Existing user? Login

Over-the-counter medicines 

The OTC market in Britain in 2015

The over-the-counter products market grew by 2.5% in 2015 to reach £2.55bn, with painkillers accounting for 23.2% of sales, followed by cough and cold remedies (18.7%) and skin treatments (17.8%).

Infographic on the breakdown of the total over-the-counter (OTC) market value in Britain in 2015

The OTC Market in Britain in 2015

The over-the-counter products market grew by 2.5% in 2015 to reach £2.55bn, with painkillers accounting for 23.2% of sales, followed by cough and cold remedies (18.7%) and skin treatments (17.8%).

Download the PDF of the full information graphic

Infographic showing the breakdown of market value of OTC medicines by category in Britain in 2016

Breakdown of market value by category

OTC market sales are dominated by products for pain relief, coughs and colds, and skin treatments.

Infographic showing individual category breakdown of OTC medicines in Britain in 2015

Individual category breakdown

The breakdown for each category shows that adult oral analgesics and vitamins have the highest sales, at £362.1m each in 2015.

Top 50 Brands

RB manufactures 10 of the products in the 50 best-selling brands of 2015, followed by GSK with 7 and McNeil with 5. Retailers’ own label products have a 19.0% share of OTC market sales, a figure that has remained largely stable for the past three years (19.3% in 2014 and 19.4% in 2013).

 2015 (2014) Brand name Sales (£m) Manufacturer
1 (1)Own label484.2 Various 
2 (2) Nurofen117.5 RB 
3 (3)Nicorette 64.6 McNeil 
4 (4)Calpol62.4 McNeil 
5 (6)Lemsip 61.2 RB 
6 (5) Gaviscon 59.7 RB 
7 (7) Canesten 40.1 Bayer 
8 (8) Solpadeine 39.5 Omega Pharma 
9 (11) Optrex 38.0 RB 
10 (10) Benylin 36.8 McNeil 
11 (12) E45 35.5 RB 
12 (9) Voltarol 34.4 Novartis 
13 (13) Halls 33.2 Mondelez International 
14 (14)Strepsils 32.3 RB 
15 (18) Sudafed 32.1 McNeil 
16 (17) Nicotinell 31.5 Novartis 
17 (16) Imodium 31.1 McNeil 
18 (15) Rennie 30.1 Bayer 
19 (19) Seven Seas 28.1 Seven Seas 
20 (20) Beechams 23.8 GSK 
21 (22) Covonia 23.5 Thornton & Ross 
22 (24) Corsodyl 23.0 GSK 
23 (23) Anadin 22.7 Pfizer 
24 (25)Berocca 21.2 Bayer 
25 (28) Well ‘Kid/Man/Teen/Woman’ 20.4 Vitabiotics 
26 (26) Panadol 20.3 GSK 
27 (27) Vicks 20.2 Proctor & Gamble 
28 (29) Pregnacare 19.0 Vitabiotics 
29 (21) Niquitin 17.1 GSK 
30 (33) Deep Heat 15.7 Mentholatum
31 (30) Senokot 15.4 RB
32 (32) Centrum 15.4 Pfizer 
33 (54) Buttercup 15.1 Omega Pharma 
34 (34) Bonjela 15.0 RB
35 (31) Nytol 14.0 Omega Pharma 
36 (37) Piritize 14.0 GSK 
37 (38) Night Nurse 13.6 GSK 
38 (36) Clean & Clear 13.2 Johnson & Johnson 
39 (35) Dettol 13.0 RB 
40 (40) Scholl 12.9 RB 
41 (43) Jakemans 12.6 LanesHealth 
42 (39) Olbas 12.5 LanesHealth 
43 (44) Abusol 11.9 Johnson & Johnson 
44 (45)Femfresh 11.8 Church & Dwight
45 (42) Otrivine 11.5 Novartis 
46 (47) Care 11.5 Thornton & Ross 
47 (41) Savlon 11.0 Novartis 
48 (57) Haliborange 11.0 Seven Seas 
49 (49) Zovirax 11.0 GSK 
50 (52) Dulcolax 10.4 Boehringer Ingelheim 

Citation: The Pharmaceutical Journal DOI: 10.1211/PJ.2016.20200923

Readers' comments (2)

  • The market for insomnia is down because people shift their preference for Night Nurse, or syrup with drowsiness effect. The growth in cold remedies market is due to abuse.
    Unfortunately the health of population is going down, due to a reduction in medical care.
    We have to do better in term of education.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • The content is really nice and it is very great for getting reviews. Academic writing help makes reviews

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

For commenting, please login or register as a user and agree to our Community Guidelines. You will be re-directed back to this page where you will have the ability to comment.

Recommended from Pharmaceutical Press

  • Non-prescription Medicines

    Non-prescription Medicines

    Reviews over-the-counter medicines, arranged by the conditions they are licensed to treat. Includes product recommendations.

    £37.00Buy now
  • Health Economics

    Health Economics

    Health Economics is a practical analysis of the prominent economic issues facing the American health care system, and what mechanisms exist to counter it.

    £32.00Buy now
  • Popular Medicines

    Popular Medicines

    An illustrated history of some of the most popular branded medicines. Includes colourful historical adverts and details of the medicine's formula and intended purpose.

    £21.00Buy now
  • Principles of Good Clinical Practice

    Principles of Good Clinical Practice

    A one-stop source for the proper conduct of clinical trials. Essential information on clinical trial design and pharmacovigilance.

    £48.00Buy now
  • Biological Therapeutics

    Biological Therapeutics

    An introduction to the treatment of disease using biological medicines derived from living plant and animal tissues.

    £32.00Buy now
  • Sampson's Textbook of Radiopharmacy

    Sampson's Textbook of Radiopharmacy

    This well-established textbook provides specialised information on the use of radiopharmaceuticals in the detection and treatment of diseases.

    £79.00Buy now

Search an extensive range of the world’s most trusted resources

Powered by MedicinesComplete
  • Print
  • Share
  • Comment
  • Save
  • Print Friendly Version of this pagePrint Get a PDF version of this webpagePDF

Supplementary images

  • Infographic on the breakdown of the total over-the-counter (OTC) market value in Britain in 2015
  • Infographic showing the breakdown of market value of OTC medicines by category in Britain in 2016
  • Infographic showing individual category breakdown of OTC medicines in Britain in 2015

Supplementary information

Jobs you might like

See more jobs

Newsletter Sign-up

Want to keep up with the latest news, comment and CPD articles in pharmacy and science? Subscribe to our free alerts.