The Chinese pet care market, valued at US$1.3 billion in 2012, shows potential for the global petfood industry, with petfood sales accounting for just 37 percent of the provisional pet care market total, according to a blog from Euromonitor International’s head of pet care research, Paula Flores.
China is home to one of the world’s highest pet populations, Flores says, with 27.4 million dogs and more than 11 million cats in 2012. The country ranks first globally as a home to other pets, such as birds, fish, reptiles and small animals.
Increasing disposable incomes in China may also help the petfood market in that country. The percentage of Chinese households with disposable incomes of more than US$10,000 and US$45,000 increased four-fold from 2006-2011, to 36 percent and 3 percent, respectively.
Further potential in the Chinese petfood market lies in the fact that much of the pet population is still eating table scraps rather than prepared petfood, as the less than 10 percent of pets receive their nutrition from prepared foods.
According to Flores, international manufacturers, such as Mars and Nestle, are most popular with consumers in China, holding a 58 percent market share in dog and cat food. The main challenges for these companies are bringing in new consumers and driving more affluent customers up to purchasing premium and higher-priced products. The top Chinese manufacturers, Tongwei Co. Ltd. and Nory Pet Co. Ltd., on the other hand, accounted for just 2 percent of retail value in 2011.