The Pet Food Market


December 31, 2003 - William A Knudson


The pet food industry is a major industry in the U.S. and it is one of the few food industries that is undergoing sustained growth. According to the American Pet Product Manufacturers Association (APPMA) 13 billion dollars will be spent on pet food in 2003 (APPMA b, p. 1). In 2002, dog food sales were 8.02 billion dollars and cat food sales were 4.20 billion dollars. These figures represent an increase of 9.7 percent for dog food and 8.2 percent for cat food from 1999 (Mintel, p. 17).

There are several reasons for this fact. Most households still have children in them. Households with children are more likely to have pets than those who do not. Furthermore, more and more people are living by themselves. While people living by themselves are less likely to own a pet, they are more likely to spend more on their pet if they do own one. Another factor affecting the pet food industry is the fact that increasingly pets are no longer considered animals but are considered by of the family. These trends will likely continue into the near future.

This paper will analyze the pet food industry in some detail. The paper will analyze demand drivers, the structure of the industry and outlets for pet food.
Implications for potential entrants into the industry will also be considered. The focus will be on dog and cat food. While horses are often considered pets, their food consumption patterns more closely approximate that of livestock.


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