Every year, pet food producers in Latin America launch new product varieties of both regular and premium dog food products, and some manufacturers are including novel functional ingredients in those product formulations.
One of the ingredients that producers are seeking is chia, a readily available, edible seed that includes multiple health benefits such as fatty acids, which, according to experts, are quite beneficial to enhance heart health.
Other claims for chia seeds are based on improvements in dogs’ skin and hair health, joint health and fatigue. Chia seeds can substitute for fish species as a pet food ingredient – for instance, salmon that is rich in fatty acids, yet more expensive than chia.
One new product in Latin America using chia is Grateful, an economy-priced pet food product from a Mexican company specializing in food ingredients, named Pastas e Insumos de Occidente.
Diamond is another example of a dog food product using chia and linseed together. This is a superpremium product that includes other high-value ingredients in its formula.
In Chile, Belcando, a brand of the German manufacturer Bewital Petfood, is also using chia seeds and linseed in its superpremium formulation, along with other ingredients such as oat grains aimed to help reduce cholesterol levels. In Brazil, Formula Natural is a superpremium grain-free product from Adimax utilizing chia and pumpkin seeds together.
Lastly, Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) recently launched a product containing chia for its leading brand in Mexico, Ganador. The formulation also includes oat and sunflower seeds that serve as antioxidants and for cardiovascular health support. Ganador is a leading mid-priced brand in the local market.
From the perspective of pet food manufacturers, it seems that more is better when it comes to pet food formulations. The products mentioned above include new ingredients aimed at convincing dog owners of the added value and functionality of their new improved formulations.
The Latin American market will likely experience a coming wave of improved formulations, using functional ingredients not seen before. In this regard, it is quite positive that pet food manufacturers are competing by leveraging the innovation of better-quality products.
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).
Pet owners want a lot from their pet food brands. They want primary proteins that suit what they believe is best for their animal. They want grains or they don't. They want something customized, but it has to be easy to understand.
Constraints and crises, like those experienced in 2020, help drive innovation and sustainability offers context.