Pet Food Manufacturers Look to OEMs and Contract Packagers to Stay Competitive

A new report from PMMI Business Intelligence tracks drivers in pet food market. Dog and cat food manufacturers require more versatile machinery and scalability to meet future demand, as well as co-packers and manufacturers to control capital expenditures.

The 'humanization' of our pets (seeking the fresh and natural ingredients you want for yourself) is a trend driving new product and packaging formats.
The "humanization" of our pets (seeking the fresh and natural ingredients you want for yourself) is a trend driving new product and packaging formats.
Getty Imges

In the U.S., the Cat and Dog segments represent 95% of the pet food market and their share is expected to keep growing until 2024 increasing their dominance over “Other Pet” foods   

Other pets, led by more than 150 million fish in the US alone, represent a tiny fraction of the market whose share is projected to decline.

Major players in the U.S. include Mars Petcare, Nestle Purina, JM Smucker, Hill’s Pet and Diamond Pet Foods.

North America is expected to hold its lock on 39 percent of the global pet food market through 2024.  Africa, with only five percent of the current market, will see compound annual growth rate in sales of 14 percent, and could overtake Europe, which will only grow at four percent.

Packaging World: Pet food pack par excellence

In the U.S, manufacturers are relying more on contract manufacturers and packagers to remain competitive.  According to the report, co-packers have been merging over the last 5 years as a way to address the shifting needs of food and beverage companies of all sizes, by:

  • Obtaining additional and diverse pieces of equipment
  • Balancing automated production with auxiliary manual labor
  • Further minimizing brand owner capitalization of new equipment

Co-packers represent a strategic point-of-entry to serve large brand owners and increase notoriety among smaller & growing brand owners.

Machinery Needs Present and Future

CPGs of all sizes demand equipment with increased efficiencies, customization, and accessibilities as a way to reduce waste and minimize down time during operation.  Accessibility is paramount to decreasing the down time resulting from maintenance and sanitation of equipment along the production line.

Packaging World: Nestlé in the U.S.—strategically consumer-centric 

Efficiencies refer to the consumption of electricity & utilization of ingredients. Specific equipment intended to be used in a given market segment is capable of preserving ingredient integrity, i.e. frozen/raw pet food.

Customization is the ability for an equipment to be made to meet the specific demands of a given CPG; either through modularity or scalability.

Custom equipment is demanded to be versatile across product types and packaging formats and expandable to accommodate future growth in demand.

Packaging World: Drop-in bioplastic for pet-food bag

In the future, CPGs will be dealing with space restrictions as demand increases.  Processing & packaging equipment designs will become more compact while maintaining or increasing operating speeds.

Modular designs, particularly for primary packaging equipment, are needed to have the convenience & versatility without a decrease in operating speed and allow for scaling production without the need to buy an entire new and larger system of equipment.

Maintenance & sanitation are essential for CPGs to reduce down time and equipment will need to be self-contained as a way to minimize the number of components that need maintenance and will require minimal, if any, tools to undergo maintenance as a precaution to avoid introducing contaminants into the food.

High quality materials need to be used in the construction of equipment as a way to improve the ease with which the surfaces can be sanitized.

PMMI members can access the entire 30-page report for FREE.  Non-members can access a FREE Executive Summary below.

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