In meeting its mission to strengthen knowledge and understanding of dietary supplements, ODS invests intellectual leadership and dollars. ODS extramural investments can be categorized into four broad areas:
- Research support (to develop new knowledge);
- Research tools (to develop research resources);
- Communications (to disseminate knowledge); and,
- Science–policy interactions (to translate knowledge to public health).
ODS's key activities are grouped into 15 programs under the four categories. An ODS staff member is responsible for overseeing each program and most ODS staff members are active in more than one program. Each program interacts with one or more stakeholder communities, including: research investigators; educators and teachers; health practitioners; research and educational institutions; federal agencies; dietary supplement, food, and related industries; media; consumer and public interest groups; and members of the public. For detailed information, see the section on ODS programs and activities on the ODS website.
The ODS budget grew rapidly from 2000 to 2004; since 2004, the ODS budget has been relatively stable.
ODS's FY2014 budget is $26.8 million. This budget was largely targeted to extramural investments in research.
In FY2014, ODS awarded $21.1 million to research projects. The distribution of these funds by project type—grants, contracts, and interagency agreements—is shown in Figure 1. The largest allocation was for research grants. ODS does not award research grants directly but selectively cofunds meritorious peer-reviewed research relevant to dietary supplements that NIH institutes and centers submit.
Figure 1. ODS total research portfolio in FY2014
Figure 2. Supplement Category Breakout of ODS Co-funded Grants