- Daily Zen
Discerning pet owners have contributed to the growth of the pet food industry.
The pet food industry has grown exponentially as people seek out healthier and flavorful options for their pets. Pets are considered a part of the family, and new-age owners spare no expense in treating them as one. Increasing pet humanization has also created an increase in demand for pet food flavors and made terms like paw mom, fur baby and father of four-legged child common.
The global pet food industry is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.6%, and is one the fastest growing industries. In the US, 70% of homes have at least one pet and pet owners spend between $329-$442 on pet food in a year.
Former American Pet Products Association President (APPA) Steve King revealed that the pet food industry exceeded over 103.6 billion dollars this year, breaking previous records. Savory pet food is available in wet, dry, and canned variants.
With the onset of the pandemic, people turned to pets for emotional support as they spent time cooped up at home. In 2020, adoption rates at rescue centers jumped as high as 40%. People turned to pets to combat the stress brought on by social isolation and quarantine.
In a survey conducted by APPA, 72% of pet owners admitted their overall well-being increased due to the presence of a pet. It helped them bond more and 39% admitted that they exercised more during Covid-19 because of their pets.
Nearly 13% of pet owners made significant life changes, including finding jobs with more flexibility, to spend time with their pet.
A study by Boehringer Ingelheim in partnership with the Ipsos Research Institute across France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK showed over 80% of pet owners admitted that having a animal companion improved their quality of life. For up to 40% of people on medications, having pets reduces their dependence on prescribed medication.
People are turning to online stores and subscription programs to cater to their pets’ nutritional needs. Free delivery and auto-renew options have made it easier for pet parents to provide for their animals.
Vitamins and supplements to improve pet immunity is a booming market and expected to grow exponentially. It is believed that this came about as most people treat their pets like children, especially millennials. Furthermore, as pet obesity increases, there has been a rising demand for weight management supplements for cats and dogs.
Organic pet food has become popular amongst millennials and is expected to increase by 10.6% within the next four years. Nutritionists continue to work on improving the taste, texture, and quality of pet food. Currently, fresh, raw, homemade, and freeze-dried diets are available for pets. As some pet foods contain additives, more and more people are turning to organic pet food. Another aspect of pet food is the flavor that must appeal to the pets and their owners.
Veterinarian Dr. Stephanie Liff informed a magazine that the easiest way to spot whether pets are getting sufficient nutrition is if their stool is easy to pick up.
Cats and dogs are the most preferred pets, but people are also opening their homes and hearts to take in other fuzzy, furry, scaly, and feathery beings. As of today, nearly 25,000 people are employed by the pet food industry and this number is projected to grow year-on-year (YoY).
In the US, the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) or the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) checks the products of companies to verify nutritional content, before giving their approval. The pet food industry has continued to grow and branched out into providing niche products for increasingly-demanding customers.
While it can be expensive, or come highly-recommended, pet owners must check labels thoroughly before purchasing anything that claims to be the “best pet food” in the market. The pet food industry will inevitably continue to expand in quantity and quality, making it one of the most promising ventures of investment.