The US market for natural pet products is projected to grow 32 percent in 2013 as retailers devote more shelf space to the expanded natural petfood and pet care product offerings by manufacturers, according to Packaged Facts.
The report, "Natural, Organic and Eco-friendly Pet Products in the US," estimates combined sales of natural petfoods and natural pet care products will grow by 10 percent to 15 percent over the period from 2014-17. Sales are projected to reach US$9.4 billion by 2017, up from an estimated US$4.1 billion in 2012.
Currently, independent pet retailers comprise 72 percent of the natural market and about 75 percent of natural petfood will be sold through the specialty channel. But, according to the report's author, David Lummis, this is expected to change as mass retailers offer more lower-priced natural foods, such as the 2011 launch of NestlÃ© Purina's Purina One Beyond and the 2012 launch of Pure Balance from Walmart. He said the market for natural pet products is expected to grow by several hundred million dollars alone because Hill's Pet Nutrition announced it will reformulate all its Science Diet petfoods into natural recipes.
“As Science Diet converts to natural and the natural petfood competition heats up even more, it’s also increasingly likely that one of the leading natural brands in the pet specialty channel will make the leap into mass, further blurring the already somewhat tenuous distinction between the natural products sold in the two channels,” said Lummis.
According to Lummis, The Nutro Co. and Blue Buffalo capture a combined 40 percent of sales in the natural petfood market. Market shares of 5 percent to 10 percent are held by four companies: WellPet, Natural Balance Pet Foods Inc., Merrick Pet Care Inc. and Natura Pet Products. The report found that smaller companies, such as Halo, Purely for Pets and Champion Petfoods account for the remaining shares of natural petfood sales.