Petfood Forum 2019 offers outlook on future of pet food

From evolving pet food e-commerce to novel ingredients and new research, the conference's exhibit hall and educational offerings will help you prepare for the market’s future.

(John Grossman l Images Photographics)
(John Grossman l Images Photographics)

Petfood Forum 2019 will feature multiple sessions addressing the many changes occurring in the dynamic pet food market and how they might play out in the next several years. Scheduled for April 29-May 1 in Kansas City, Missouri, USA, the conference includes a panel discussion on the future of pet food and its consumers, an executive panel on e-commerce and pet food retailing disruptions, outlooks on where pet food premiumization and litigation are headed, and concurrent sessions on upcoming novel ingredients and other areas highlighting the latest pet food research.

Panel discussions feature pet food experts and executives

“Pet food, retailer and e-commerce execs: the new world of selling pet food,” the closing conference session of Petfood Forum to be held on May 1, will feature executives from Nestle Purina, Petco and other top pet food companies and retailers, including from e-commerce. The panel discussion on the future of pet food and its consumers, comprised of pet food consultants, market and processing experts, will address projected changes in consumer behavior, pet food business models, nutrition and formulation, processing, safety and technology, as well as ingredient procurement and availability.

Other panel discussions on May 1 will provide an update and dialogue on lessons learned from the canine dilated cardiomyopathy and grain-free pet food investigation, plus a provocative debate on science vs. marketing, and which is driving pet food product development.

The conference portion of Petfood Forum will begin on Tuesday, April 30, with an opening keynote by Katy Nelson, D.V.M., host and executive producer of “The Pet Show with Dr. Katy,” sharing her insights on how pet nutrition and health can nurture the human-pet bond. General sessions during the conference will cover the future of pet food premiumization, recent trends and projections for pet food litigation, omnichanneling (consumers shopping for pet food in multiple retail channels and platforms) and results of an exclusive global survey of dog owners and their dog food purchasing decisions.

Learn the newest pet food research

Petfood Forum 2019 will also include four concurrent session tracks on pet food nutrition, ingredients, marketing and packaging, and safety and processing. Featuring the latest research in these areas, the sessions will cover topics such as an evaluation of black soldier fly larvae as a protein and fat source for pet food; tips for successful online sales, including the best packaging; evaluating pet treat digestion and safety; an update on pet food label modernization in the U.S.; and survey results of the pet food product claims that matter to pet owners.

The conference will also showcase new research from university students, industry research posters, a large exhibit hall and a product presentation stage. You can find the full conference schedule and session descriptions, along with a list of exhibitors and information on how to register, at


Find the latest on Petfood Forum 2019

Access an updated schedule and list of sessions:

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Petfood Innovation Workshop: Clean Label Technology

On Monday, April 29, Petfood Innovation Workshop will provide an immersive, interactive experience in clean label technology. Consumers are increasingly expecting transparency with the products they buy, and pet food and treats are no exception. This growing interest in clean labels is causing some pet food companies to change their logistics, production processes and labels. Petfood Innovation Workshop will explore trends in transparency, the desire for improved communication through labels and how they match up with the technical, legal and logistical aspects of manufacturing modern pet foods to satisfy both pets and their owners.

Held in a food lab and test kitchen at the Kansas State University-Olathe campus, just a short bus ride away from the Kansas City Convention Center, the workshop will feature stations presented by leading industry suppliers. Each station will focus on a specific area of clean label, including consumer and market insights, processing, supply chain (using virtual reality), ingredients, mold/yeast inhibition, packaging, food safety and testing.

For more information, visit

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