Businesses focusing on pet care in China are growing by 15% per year, and the market has a potential turnover of 20 billion yuan (US$3.21 billion), according to reports. As the number of domestic pets increases, so do the opportunities for market expansion—and Taiwanese businesses are taking full advantage.
A pet service company in Shanghai established by a Taiwanese entrepreneur has had roots in China for 20 years, and has seen the market grow. According to Chiang Pi-hsiu, executive chairperson of the company, there are 120,000 registered pets in Shanghai but the actual number is thought to be several times higher than that. "A healthy pet can cost its owner between 600 and 800 yuan (US$96â€“$130) a month," said Chiang. "So a dog or a cat owner would spend at least 10,000 yuan (US$1,600) a year for us to take care of their animal."
The growing market comes with more regulations, as well, and the market needs to manage international standards to continue growing. Chiang's company is the only one in Shanghai licensed to sell cats and dogs, and the company owns a specialized farm to breed the animals. "It was very painstaking to apply for the license, and if a pet gets sick the service that goes with it would be very special," said Chiang. "Now local operators are catching up and the industry is not what it was 10 years ago. Now we need more professional people and licensed businesses to survive and keep up with international standards."
While cat trends continue, the pandemic has added to overall slow-growth treatment of the cat food market.
Premiumization and humanization, as well as automation, fueled continued operation growth in spite of the COVID-19 pandemic.