Revenues rise, confidence falls among pet food leaders

A second-quarter follow-up survey conducted by Petfood Industry and Communications For Research presents the challenges brought to pet food executives by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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(DrAfter123 |

UPDATE: Petfood Industry is currently conducting its third quarterly survey to calculate the latest Petfood Industry Confidence Index. Petfood Industry readers may complete an anonymous online questionnaire, which will take 5 to 7 minutes. Share your opinion.

Petfood Industry magazine has partnered with Communications For Research Inc. to research and report on the confidence level of industry executives within pet food markets each quarter. For this second report, data was collected from April 27, 2020, through June 2, 2020, from pet food industry executives in a variety of business functions and job roles.

With the COVID-19 pandemic sweeping the globe, industry executives’ confidence level fell dramatically compared to the positive sentiment expressed in the first quarter of 2020. However, in contrast, a very strong majority of companies also experienced moderate to significant sales increases due to the pandemic, largely driven by increases at grocery and direct-to-consumer sales, and a very strong increase in online sales.

Significant shifts in confidence reported from pre-pandemic to current events

Despite these increases in sales, the decline in the confidence index level (Overall Confidence Index of 77 compared to 2020 Q1 base) reflects major concerns over current and future market conditions. Earlier this year, nearly all respondents reported average or above-average conditions and also expected conditions to remain positive in the future. However, the dramatic effects of COVID-19 have caused concerns over raw material disruptions in the supply chain as well as consumer pantry loading inflating sales; these major concerns seem to be driving the steep declines in sentiment around current industry conditions and in future expectations.

The sentiment around growth and opportunities within markets also saw a steep decline. Negative responses around future and present opportunities went up 20% and 15%, respectively, compared to last quarter when 0% of executives felt there’d be less opportunity or growth. Reasons mentioned around the pessimism in growth were an increase in vacant jobs and it being a difficult time to introduce products.

“Consumers will pick brands most familiar to them and will not deviate and try new brands,” said one executive.

Pet food industry not alone

Overall, COVID-19 has affected the pet food industry, and as with other industries some of the biggest effects have been changes to worker safety and sanitation and companies and employees working from home. In times of change, the uncertainty of the future is apparent.

We are continuously in communication with executives to gather opinions on business conditions in the pet food industry as well as to research relevant topics and trends. 

The next Petfood Industry Confidence Index report is expected to be published in the November 2020 issue of Petfood Industry magazine.


Would you like to be part of the Index? Get qualified here:

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