NestlÃ© SA reported a reduction in first half profit and revenue as people cut back on purchases of commodities such as bottled water, prepared meals and dairy products, The Wall Street Journal reported, but the company's pet care sales grew 9.1% from the year-earlier period.
The company's focus on premium, higher-margin products paid off in the pet care division as people were willing to spend money on their pets, despite the recession. The pet care division's growth beat out all other main NestlÃ© product segments except powdered and liquid beverages. "Growth in pet care remains resilient," CFO Jim Singh was quoted in the article.
NestlÃ©'s Purina and Friskies brands each increased 6% in sales for the first half of the year, while Dog Chow jumped over 16% -- the second fastest growth of any of the company's major products (coffee system Nespresso was first).