Latin American cat food sales growing faster than dog

Total global pet food sales may exceed US$130 billion in 2023 and grow to nearly US$160 billion by 2028.

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While dog food remains a far larger market in Latin America, cat food sales have been growing much faster and likely will continue this strong compound annual growth rate into the near future. Alberto Trueba of Euromonitor explored the rising Latin American cat food market during his presentation at Foro Mascotas 2023 in Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico on June 1. Urbanization has driven cat ownership in Latin America as more people move to cities, while premiumization and humanization increase demand for higher priced products.

The overall pet food market in Latin America may reach approximately US$16 billion in 2023, Trueba said. Euromonitors analysts forecast that value to reach US$21 billion by 2023. Dog food makes up more than half of those quantities, at approximately US$12 billion in 2023 and more than US$15 billion in 2028. However, cat food will have a higher compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2023 to 2028. In 2023, cat food retail sales value in Latin America is estimated to reach US$4 billion, growing to US$5 billion at a CAGR of approximately 7%. Dog food’s CAGR may be closer to 5%.

The growth in Latin America’s cat food sales value mirrors a similar trend worldwide. Euromonitor expects total global pet food sales to exceed US$130 billion in 2023 and grow to nearly US$160 billion by 2028. Cat food retail sales may grow from more than US$50 billion to US$60 billion during that time. Dog food sales value will remain higher at an estimated US$80 billion in 2023 and US$90 billion in 2028. However, cat food sales growth may exceed 4% CAGR from 2023 to 2028, while dog food CAGR may remain below 3%.

In Mexico, cat food sales growth potential is yet more pronounced. While dog food sales may grow at less than 1% CAGR from 2023 to 2028, cat food’s CAGR may reach approximately 11%. Dog food sales will still be the largest portion of Mexico’s pet food market. In 2023, dog food sales in Mexico may exceed US$2.5 billion but will only grow to a bit more than that by 2023. On the other hand, cat food sales value in Mexico may grow from approximately US$7.5 billion in 2023 to US$1.25 billion by 2028. Pet ownership trends may be responsible for much of this disparity in growth between dog and cat food sales.

Pet ownership trends in Mexico

Mexican pet owners have shifted towards smaller dogs and more cats per household during the past few years. From 2021 to 2022, the number of households with four or five cats increased, while single cat households declined. At the same time the number of small and medium-sized dogs also increased, while the population of large dogs remained steady.

This shift towards more, but smaller, pets will help maintain a constant demand for pet food in Mexico, Truba said.

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