Grupo Calesa, a leading agro-industrial group from Panama, recently announced the launch of two foreign dog food labels to its portfolio to be distributed in the domestic market. The labels are Ganador and The Top Choice, manufactured in Mexico and property of Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM).
Both brands are quite popular in Mexico and have posted accelerated growth in past years, thanks to their widespread distribution and affordable price. Ganador is positioned within the mid-tier price segment, while The Top Choice is an economy product.
Panama has 4.5 million inhabitants, with middle-high per capita income, according to World Bank statistics. In addition, Triplethree International estimations show, Panama has more than 2 million dogs, meaning that pet food consumption easily surpasses 100,000 metric tons per year.
The two new foreign brands will likely take a considerable share of the market as Grupo Calesa enjoys widespread distribution across current retail channels. Looking ahead, robust demand is foreseeable because both product lines, Ganador and The Top Choice, have key attributes such as good quality and low price.
Ganador is available in three formulations: Original, Premium and Duo. Ganador Premium claims enhancement of the immune system, cognitive development, healthy bones and teeth, and intestinal health, supported with the inclusion of ingredients such as antioxidants, DHA + EPA for neurological development, calcium, vitamin D, prebiotics and probiotics.
Ganador Duo is a unique product that contains two flavors in the same bag: roast beef and grilled chicken.
The Top Choice’s label says it has 19.5% protein and is well-suited for puppies and adults of all breeds.
While every Central American market is different, imported brands from Mexico usually operate under partnerships with local distributors and retailers. The relatively small size of each market requires such partnerships to minimize costs and make the products affordable to consumers.
Iván Franco is the founder of Triplethree International and has collaborated on hundreds of research projects for several consumer goods industries. He was granted the Global Consultant of the Year award by Euromonitor International and authored the book 17 Market Strategies for Growth (in Spanish).
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