Hello. And welcome back to FOOD – The Doggy Perspective. In today’s post, we will be discussing what is up in pet food news around the globe. The pet food industry is huge. It employs not just a few people, but a lot of people. According to
The Bureau of Labor Statistics In March 2015, a total of 55,817 people worked in animal food manufacturing. Pet and pet supplies stores employed 113,067. And, if you count Veterinary services, the number of employees reached 333,291 … that’s at least 501,545 people, directly and indirectly handling pet food. Keeping up with Industry news and happenings may not top the list of priorities, however, I’ve found a few tidbits to share.
Dog Finds Out At Subway Sandwich Shop
Every night for the past year, a stray dog has shown up outside the Subway sandwich shop in Portales, New Mexico. The employees there took a liking to the dog — they’ve named her “Subway Sally” and make sure she’s always fed.
One night, Subway employee Giovanni Luhman filmed his interaction with Subway Sally and shared the video on TikTok. When he woke up the next morning, the video had more than 10 million views, CBS affiliate KRQE reports. The internet had fallen in love with Subway Sally, just like he and his coworkers had.
Luhman continued to share videos of the pup and wants others to learn a valuable lesson from her story. “People should not limit their concern,” Luhman told CBS News, urging people to not only care about strays on social media, but in real life, too.
In a video about Subway Sally, Luhman told his TikTok followers she’s not the only stray dog in the area. “I live in a very poor town, and more often than not, people can’t pay for pet food,” he said in the video.
Luhman told CBS News he’s been inspired to start a local pet food drive “to help low income families in hopes that their pets won’t end up on the streets because they can’t be taken care of.” He also said many people, including celebrities, have reached out and offered money for his good deed, but he doesn’t want to profit from a stray dog.
In the videos, Luhman explained that he can’t take Sally home himself because he has cats, and he hasn’t taken her to a shelter because the closest one, which is 20 miles away, has a high kill rate.
Even though Sally went viral and gained widespread attention, Luhman is not going to post about her anymore. But he did assure followers he and his coworkers will continue to feed her. (CBS News)
Pet Food Spending For 2018 Hit $28.85B
According to John Gibbons, president of A GPS for Pet Businesses, as we continue to drill ever deeper into the demographic pet spending data from the US BLS, we have now reached the level of individual industry segments. We will start with pet food, the largest and arguably most influential of all. We have noted the trendy nature of pet food spending – two years up then spending goes flat or turns downward for a year. This pattern began in 1997 but has become more pronounced since 2003. After the dip in 2016, food spending increased by $4.6 billion in 2017 due to a deeper market penetration of super premium foods. We then expected a small increase in 2018 but what we got was a $2.27B decrease (-7.3%). This was likely due to the reaction to the FDA warning on grain free dog food. A pattern of over 20 years was broken by one statement. Let’s take a closer look.
First, we’ll see which groups were most responsible for the bulk of pet food spending and the $2.27B drop. The first chart details the biggest pet food spenders for each of 10 demographic categories. It shows their share of CUs, share of pet food spending and their spending performance (share of spending/share of CUs). Nine of the groups are the same as total pet. However, pet food spending by age group has become more balanced and skewed slightly older. The categories are presented in the order that reflects their share of total pet spending. This highlights the differences in importance. In pet food the number of earners is far less important while marriage matters more. Also, while income is still the highest performing demographic characteristic, it carries less weight in food spending. Another big difference is that total pet had six groups performing at or above 120%. Pet food had only four. This indicates that pet food spending and pet ownership is spread more evenly across demographic segments. Pet products also had only four groups over 120%. This shows the influence of the pet food segment which still accounts for 59% of pet products $ and 37% of all pet spending.
- Race/Ethnic – White, not Hispanic (83.2%) – down from 86.6%. This large group accounts for the vast majority of spending in every segment. Like 7 other big groups, their performance fell. It was down to 120.5% from 126.4%, but this category still ranks #4 in terms of importance in Pet Food Spending demographic characteristics. While Hispanics, African Americans and Asian American account for over 31% of U.S. CUs, they spend only 17% of Pet Food $. However, this is up from 13% last year. Pet ownership is relatively high in Hispanic households and they fueled the growth, but it remains significantly lower for African Americans and Asian Americans.
- # in CU – 2+ people (80.3%) – down from 82.4%. The share of market for 2+ CUs is over 80% for all segments but services. Their overall food performance fell from 115.6% to 113.8% largely because it was a bad year for 2 person CUs and a good year for singles. 2 Person households are still the performance leader but in the 2+ group only 4 person CUs underperform…slightly. Their lowest performance rating is 94%, which is not bad. The old adage about pet spending is still true, “It just takes two.”
- Housing – Homeowners (76.8%) – down from 80.9%. Homeownership is a huge factor in pet ownership and more pet spending. However, their share dropped and their performance fell from 128.6% to 121.0%. Homeownership went from 2nd to 3rd in terms of importance for increased pet food spending. It was an incredibly bad year for homeowners without a mortgage and a good year for renters.
- Income – Over $50K (68.7%) – down from 70.5%. Although their performance rating dropped significantly from 136.9% to 128.9%, CU income is still the single most important factor in increased pet food spending. However, the over $50K income group has its smallest market share and lowest performance in the food segment. Since pet food is a “must buy” for pet parents, this is evidence that pet ownership is common across all income levels. The drop in share and performance was largely driven by a $2.9B decrease in spending by the $50>149K group.
- Education – Associates Degree or Higher (62.8%) – up from 55.4%. Education regained importance in pet food spending. The performance of higher education grew from 102.4% to 115.2%. All groups with a formal degree after high school spent more. The other groups, especially HS grads w/some college spent less.
- Occupation – All Wage & Salary Earners (60.4%) – down from 67.7% – In an exact reversal of 2017, the spending of blue-collar workers dropped precipitously while the Self-employed spent more. Even though tech/Sls/clerical workers increased spending, the performance of All Wage & Salary earners fell from 110.8% to 98.9%. This big group is no longer earning their share in pet food spending.
- # Earners – “Everyone Works” (58.2%) – down from 58.4%. There was little change from last year as their performance also fell slightly from 101.9% to 100.7%. Income matters most in pet food spending but it appears that the # of Earners matters very little, regardless of whether overall spending in the segment is up or down.
- Age – 45>74 (60.4%) – down from 65.9%. There was a huge decrease by the 55>64-yr olds but the 35>54 yr olds also spent less. The 65>74 group increased spending by $0.92B so the “big” group became 45>74. The performance of the new group fell from 128.2% to 118.7% so “age” category dropped out of the 120+% club.
- CU Composition – Married Couples (61.3%) – down from 62.5%. Although they lost a little in share and their performance fell from 126.3% to 123.5%, they moved up from 5th to 2nd place due to married CUs with children.
- Area – Suburban (60.1%) up from 55.4%. Suburban areas are the biggest food spenders and they gained share. Their performance jumped from 99.6% to 108.4% due to a bad year by Rural and a $1.5B gain by Suburbs >2500
Nine out of 10 big spenders for pet food are the same as those for total pet and pet products but generally have a lower market share and performance. Pet food spending fell $2.27B in 2018. We have strong initial indications that much of the drop came from a complete reversal of spending from the groups that upgraded in 2017, possibly due to the FDA warning. Income is still important but there are indications of more balanced spending in most demographic categories. (Petage.com)
Pet Food Trends in 2020 Focus On Fruit, Alternative Proteins, and Healthy Options
Pet owners shop for pet foods that reflect their food beliefs.
People love their pets and are willing to spend serious money keeping them healthy. It’s no surprise then that key trends in pet food processing mirror trends in human food: clean label, alternative proteins and more healthful ingredients and processes.
“Pet food makers have absolutely seen an increased shopper expectation for pet food products on the shelf that mirrors human food options,” says Mary Emma Young, senior director of communications for the Pet Food Institute.
“Our society’s relationship to pets has evolved over the decades, with dogs and cats now being beloved members of the family,” she continues. “Whether it’s clean label, sustainability claims, functional nutrition or free-from claims, pet lovers increasingly look for labels and packaging that reflect their personal food philosophy and needs.” Customers are trying and purchasing foods that are a little fruity (raspberries,blueberries), primal (made with organic ingredients), are sustainable, and contain alternative proteins. (www.foodprocessing.com)
From Our Table
Thanks for watching. My dog enjoyed the 3.5 oz serving for small breeds. No problems with the serving size. Digestion went well for my dog with no strange side effects. I have read that when introducing a new brand of food to your dog to gradually add in the new food to the existing food to give the dog an opportunity to adjust to the new meal. In this case, I wanted to try this formula without blending it in to get a more realistic idea of how the food nourishes my dog. Once fed, we water fasted for 24 hours. I am pleased and like this food for my dog. If this appeals to you, click the link above to get yours. I hope you enjoyed this review and if you have any questions about Blue Basics Limited Grain Free Turkey and Potatoe Recipe or want to leave your own personal review, leave a comment below.
Okay Now, Time For Walk
Guys, let’s go ahead and grab the keys, the harness and lead, the dogs and the poo bags. During this walk, I am encouraging all dog walkers to take advantage of this time to show your dog that you care. Make eye contact with your doggy. Go on a looooong walk. Stop to pick up a treat. A little appreciation goes a long way. It’s thirty minutes of your day. But, remember, it’s the doggy’s thirty minutes. Spruce the doggy up a bit. Buy a new harness or collar. Or a toy to play with today. You don’t have to lose your shirt on these investments, but man, your doggy will gush from this new level of love. Use my promo code 30DOGVEST at Amazon.com to save 30% on select products 2/1 thru 2/3 while supplies last. Click the link.
Thanks for stopping by.
The Doggy Perspective