Pets are a booming business in China. While reaching a consensus on numbers is difficult, there is no doubt that this market for pet care—and specifically petfood—is growing rapidly.

Estimates for the number of pets owned in China vary from 40 million to 150 million (and those are just for registered pets). Projections for annual sales of petfood by 2015 range from US$476 million (Euromonitor International) to US$7.8 billion (Gerson Lehrman Group).

But nearly all experts agree the Chinese pet market is growing, and fast. The number of pets owned is increasing 10% to 20% per year, according to Euromonitor, while growth in petfood sales is projected at a 7.7% compound annual rate through 2015. That’s after the Chinese petfood market grew 800% between 2000 and 2010.

Petfood Forum China, the first petfood conference ever to be held in China, will shed light on this dynamic, exciting market and help petfood professionals learn more about pet nutrition, ingredients, US and Chinese marketing and regulatory considerations, food safety, packaging and new product development. Scheduled for October 12 at the Shanghai World Expo Exhibition and Convention Center, Petfood Forum China will be held in conjunction with Pet Fair Asia, the leading pet product tradeshow in China, now celebrating its 15th year.

Besides visiting the impressive exhibits at Pet Fair Asia, Petfood Forum China participants will enjoy several opportunities to network with petfood professionals from China and throughout the world. If you register for Petfood Forum China by August 20, 2012, you will save more than 15%.

As of press time, the following topics and speakers have been confirmed:

  • Overcoming the perception of Asian-made consumables in the US market —Anthony Guidice, director of international operations for Weruva International, suggests ways for petfood manufacturers to prove regulations, quality and safety practices are being followed and tell a powerful quality and safety story to US consumers.
  • Healthy food, healthy pet, happy human: How specialty micronutrients and functional ingredients can drive animal health and petfood value— Ingmar S. Middelbos, PhD, manager of specialty products and pet market for Novus Nutrition Brands, explains how to truly add value to petfood products with functional ingredients, focusing on joint, oral and senior pet health.
  • Needs, trends and petfood buying habits of Chinese pet owners— Tang Yang, founder and CEO of, the largest online network for Chinese dog owners, presents information on the demands and buying patterns of Chinese pet owners and the development trends of pet industries in China.
  • Trends in nutritional management of pet digestive health —Juan Gomez-Basauri, PhD, global director of the companion animal business for Alltech, focuses on prebiotics and biomolecules for nutritionally managing digestive health in pets, addressing ingredient sources, functional roles and interactions, trends in research and future applications.
  • Safe petfood: validation, recontamination and other considerations —Will Henry, director of technology and R&D for Extru-Tech Inc., introduces the major principles of food safety to help petfood manufacturers review all aspects of their production scheme to secure the manufacture of safe, quality petfood and reduce the risk of recontamination.
  • The effects of kibble shape and particle size on feline palatability, processing parameters and texture— Kristopher Figge, senior scientist with AFB International, presents results of studies with implications for extrusion processing and development of cat food products.
  • Advancements in high-barrier plastic packaging for shelf-stable petfood —Vivek A. Chougule, business development manager for Printpack, shares new petfood packaging technologies, the environmental footprint of various formats and the effects of food sterilization and storage on packaging material performance.
  • Workshop: how to structure new product development for increased success —John Adams, president of Adams Development, and Marcel Blok, owner of Change Stranamics BV, present a brief workshop on the key steps of the new product development process, including important decisions and checkpoints that determine the most efficient use of resources.

Find updates online

Bookmark for updates and registration information for Petfood Forum China, including registration and updates. Register by August 20, 2012, to save over 15%.