CAFIC 2024 held in April

The event attracted over 800 professionals from 156 pet food manufacturers and brand owners.

The 5th China International Companion Animal Food Ingredients Conference (CAFIC 2024) took place in Yangzhou, China, from April 21-25, 2024. Hosted by LAMB Consultancy and HDSF Tech, CAFIC 2024, under the theme "How Technology and Management Improve Safety, Quality and Innovation of Pet Foods," emerged as China's largest event connecting the booming pet food industry with upstream industries producing ingredients, supplements, equipment and services.

China's pet food industry, one of the fastest-growing segments in consumer goods, reported significant growth, with 120 million dogs and cats as household companions in 2023. The country's dry pet food production reached 1.46 million metric tons in 2024, and the total value of wet pet food production was estimated at $3 billion. The industry has seen an average annual growth of 10% over the past five years, driving demand for ingredients and technologies from both domestic and international markets. CAFIC 2024 featured 28 presentations, panel discussions and a tour of Keshan Pet Food.

Key Highlights from CAFIC 2024:

USDA and FDA Presentations:

  • Ted Shibata, acting director of the USDA Agricultural Trade Office (ATO) in Shanghai, discussed the trade status of US pet foods and ingredients with China, highlighting the significant growth of US pet food exports to China since 2020. He emphasized the vital role of ATOs in supporting this trade
  • Dr. Ashley van Batavia, USDA APHIS veterinarian in Beijing, introduced the protocols and regulations that ensure the bio-safety of US pet foods and rendered animal protein ingredients, facilitating the US's position as China’s top trade partner for these products
  • Edward Potter, assistant country director at the FDA's China Office, delivered a keynote on "US Compliance Requirement for Foreign Pet Food Facilities and Pet Food Importers." He elaborated on pre-market ingredient approval, the FSMA Final Rule for Preventive Controls for Animal Food, and the Foreign Supplier Verification Program (FSVP), which are critical for firms exporting pet foods to the USA.

International Contributions:

  • Erik Smidt, agricultural counselor of the Netherlands Kingdom in China, detailed pet food consumption trends and industry developments in the Netherlands
  • Adhinand Indrapim, minister counselor of the Royal Thai Embassy in China, discussed pet food consumption in Thailand, government regulations and the importance of international standardization
  • Monika Kolpaczynska, business development manager of the Polish Trade and Investment Office, introduced the Polish pet food industry and potential collaborations with Chinese customers

Technological and Industry Insights:

  • Dr. Yulong Yin, a renowned nutritionist, reviewed advances in pet food ingredient development and forecasted industry trends
  • Dr. Mian Riaz, an expert in pet food processing, shared insights on baked pet food trends and ingredient selection
  • Prof. Haipeng Yang, a feed quality specialist, addressed common mistakes in analytical laboratories to prevent legal issues
  • Dr. Jianguang Li, technical service director at Josha PetLike, introduced advances in functional premixes for specialty pet foods
  • Sigve Nordrum, executive VP of Aker BioMarine, discussed krill processing advancements for pet foods

Awards and Recognition:

  • Dr. Yulong Yin presented the "2024 Triple I Award for Pet Food Ingredient Industry" to various suppliers and distributors for their R&D achievements, technical services and contributions to Chinese pet family communities
  • Professionals from over 50 domestic pet food companies and ingredient suppliers received PCQI training certificates, reflecting improvements in managerial capabilities and safety/quality control in China’s pet treat export sector

Concurrent Conference: The 3rd China International Companion Animal Food Equipment Conference (CAFEC 2024) was held alongside CAFIC 2024, focusing on advancements in pet food manufacturing technologies and equipment.

CAFIC and CAFEC 2024 attracted over 800 professionals from 156 pet food manufacturers and brand owners. These events, along with monthly Pet Nutrition Webinars and bi-monthly Petfood Processing Webinars hosted by LAMB Consultancy, serve as major platforms for industry updates and technology introductions in China. The next conferences, CAFIC 2025 and CAFEC 2025, are scheduled for early June 2025.

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