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Sector Trend Analysis – Pet food trends in India

August 2019

Executive summary

The pet population in India increased by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.0% from 14.5 million pets in 2014 to 22.1 million in 2018. The pet population will continue to show growth from 2019 to 2023, with an expected CAGR of 9.6%. In 2018, pet dogs accounted for 88.0% of the pet population.

In line with the growing trend to humanize pets and the general desire to extend their life expectancy, many pet owners in India have started to purchase pet healthcare and pet dietary supplement products. They are switching from traditionally homemade pet food to commercial processed pet food, which is creating many opportunities for the pet product industry.

The retail sales value of the pet food market in India has doubled from US$139.0 million in 2014 to US$284.8 million in 2018, and is projected to double again to US$587.0 million by 2023.

In 2018, pet shops were the largest distribution channel (41.9%) in India, followed by veterinary clinics (39.9%). Online retailing of pet food is on the rise at a CAGR of 10.7%, although it had a smaller distribution share of 0.9% in 2018.

In 2017, over half of all Indian pet food purchases were made from Mars Inc. However, its retail sales CAGR decreased by −2.4% from 2013 to 2017. The top two brands, Pedigree and Royal Canin, both owned by Mars Inc., hold a dominant share of the pet food market in India, accounting for 48.1% of total sales.

Canada was India's eighth-largest pet food supplier.
India doubled its pet food imports from Canada, from US$379,059 in 2017 to US$763,826 in 2018. Canada accounted for 1.7% of India's total pet food imports.

Between January 2014 and December 2018, 737 pet food products were launched in India. Most of the new launches were dog snacks and treats, with 432 releases over this period.

Pet population and ownership

The pet population in India has increased by a CAGR of 11.0% from 14.5 million pets in 2014 to 22.1 million in 2018. The pet population will continue to grow from 2019 to 2023, with a CAGR of 9.6%.

In 2018, pet dogs accounted for 88.0% of the pet population with the highest CAGR of all pets of 11.4% from 2014 to 2018. The dog population will continue to increase at a CAGR of 10.0% from 2019 to 2023, reaching 31.4 million by 2023. The cat population had the second largest growth, at a CAGR of 9.0% from 2014 (1.2 million) to 2018 (1.7 million), while the fish population had the third largest growth at a CAGR of 7.7%. The small mammal population and reptile population had low growth at a CAGR of 0.8% from 2014 to 2018 and is projected to have the same CAGR of 0.8% from 2019 to 2023.

Pet population in India: historical and forecast number of animals ('000s)
Category 2014 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018 2019 2023 CAGR* % 2019-2023
Pet population 14,540.9 22,063.8 11.0 24,252.5 35,055.3 9.6
Dogs 12,584.6 19,412.7 11.4 21,422.2 31,405.1 10.0
Cats 1,214.3 1,713.7 9.0 1,839.0 2,436.2 7.3
Fish 525.9 708.8 7.7 758.0 961.7 6.1
Birds 143.0 153.0 1.7 157.0 173.6 2.5
Small mammals 61.0 63.1 0.8 63.7 65.7 0.8
Reptiles 12.1 12.5 0.8 12.6 13.0 0.8

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

In 2018, India experienced dog ownership growth at a CAGR of 9.4% from 2014 to 2018. This growth reflects an increase from 11.8 million households owning dogs in 2014 to 16.9 million households in 2018. The percentage of households owning dogs increased from 4.5% in 2014 to 6.0% in 2018. The number of households owning cats increased from 1.1 million in 2014 to 1.3 million in 2018.

Pet ownership in India: number of households in '000 and by % share
Category 2014 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018
Dogs 11,837.5 16,936.9 9.4
% Share 4.5 6.0 7.5
Cats 1,104.8 1,337.2 4.9
% Share 0.4 0.5 5.7

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

Retail market size

Major factors driving demand for pet food in India include increasing pet ownership, rising per capita disposable income and rising number of nuclear families, particularly in urban areas. In India, pet food predominantly includes packaged, ready-to-eat food products that are manufactured to provide complete nutrition to pets.

In line with the growing trend to humanize pets and the general desire to extend their life expectancy, many pet owners have started to regularly use pet healthcare and pet dietary supplement products. They are switching from traditionally home-made pet food to commercial packaged pet food with more nutritional ingredients. Pet owners feel it is more convenient to use pet food which saves their time too.

The retail sales value of the pet food market in India has doubled from US$139.0 million in 2014 to US$284.8 million in 2018 and is projected to double again to US$587.0 million by 2023. Every category will continue to contribute to the growth of pet food sales in India. In 2018, dog food accounted for the majority of the pet food market at 97.5%, followed by cat food at 2.3% and other pet food at 0.2%.

Pet food in India: historical and forecast retail sales in US$ million
Category 2014 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018 Share % 2018 2019 2023 CAGR* % 2019-2023
Total pet food 139.0 284.8 19.6 100.0 326.2 587.0 15.8
Dog food 134.7 277.6 19.8 97.5 318.4 575.7 16.0
Cat food 4.0 6.6 13.3 2.3 7.2 10.2 9.1
Other pet food 0.3 0.6 18.9 0.2 0.6 1.1 16.4

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

Company shares

In 2017, although over half of Indian pet food purchases were made from Mars Inc., its CAGR fell to −2.4% from 2013 to 2017. Indian Broiler Group increased its share from 8.5% in 2013 to 12.1% in 2017 at a CAGR of 9.2%. Other pet food companies such as Stylam Sydney and Russo Mangimi SpA tried to gain market share, but accounted for less than 2.2% in 2017.

Pet food in India: historical company retail market share % breakdown
Company 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Mars Inc. 59.4 62.1 59.1 57.2 53.8 −2.4
Indian Broiler Group 8.5 9.6 10.8 11.6 12.1 9.2
Stylam Sydney 1.9 2.4 2.2 2.2 2.2 3.7
Russo Mangimi SpA 0.1 1.1 1.2 1.5 1.6 100.0
Charoen Pokphand Group 1.1 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.3 4.3
Others 29.0 23.7 25.5 26.2 29.0 0.0

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate Data available to 2017

Brand shares

The top two brands, Pedigree and Royal Canin, both owned by Mars Inc., dominated the pet food market in India at 48.1%, followed by Drools by Indian Broiler Group at 12.1% in 2017. Other brands accounted for only marginal shares below 2.2% in 2017. Mars Inc. has been building credibility in India through promotional activities, awareness raising and advertising, even though the growth of Pedigree and Royal Canin decreased at a CAGR of −2.0% and −3.6%, respectively, from 2013 to 2017. Royal Canin pet food is produced in France and imported into India, and there was a shortfall in raw materials in late 2016 and early 2017.

Top ten brands of pet food, % breakdown, 2013-2017
Brand 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Pedigree (Mars Inc.) 35.6 35.0 34.3 34.4 32.8 −2.0
Royal Canin (Mars Inc.) 17.7 18.2 18.0 16.6 15.3 −3.6
Drools (Indian Broiler Group) 8.5 9.6 10.8 11.6 12.1 9.2
Stylam Choostix (Stylam Sydney) 1.9 2.4 2.2 2.2 2.2 3.7
N & D (Russo Mangimi SpA) 1.0 1.1 1.4 1.5 14.5
Jerhigh (Charoen Pokphand Group) 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.2 1.3 6.8
Whiskas (Mars Inc.) 1.5 1.4 1.3 1.3 1.2 −5.4
Hill's Science Diet (Colgate-Palmolive Co.) 1.3 1.2 1.1 1.2 1.2 −2.0
Eukanuba (Mars Inc.) 2.7 1.1 1.1 1.1 −25.9
Glenand (Glenands Group) 0.5 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.7 8.8

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate Data available till 2017

Market segmentation

Dog food

With the increase in the dog population, dog food in all price ranges performed well in 2018. From 2014 to 2018, dog food sales experienced a significant increase, from US$134.7 million to US$277.6 million, with a CAGR of 19.8%. Dry dog food represented 88.3% of total dog food sales in 2018, grew at a CAGR of 20.2% from 2014 to 2018 and is forecast to grow at a CAGR of 16.5% from 2019 to 2023. All categories had positive growth from 2014 to 2018 (economy dry dog food recording the highest CAGR of 23.9%) and are forecast to grow from 2019 to 2023, with the economy dry dog food category once again expected to record the highest growth of 19.3%. Premium dry dog food retail value sales grew at a rate of 13.1% in 2018. Dog treats continued to see strong growth in 2018, with a CAGR of 17.1% from 2014 to 2018.

Dry dog food: the favourite type in India

Dog owners in India consider many factors when purchasing dog food, including storage, buying in bulk versus buying smaller packages, shelf life, lifecycle needs and dietary needs. Dry dog food emerged as a clear solution, since it can be stored in a dry place at room temperature, lasts longer than wet dog food and can be bought in bulk, unlike wet dog food, which tends to come in smaller packages in India.

Increasing dog adoption boosts dog food sales

Indians have become more attached to dogs for a variety of reasons, including companionship. This is particularly apparent in cities, where pet dogs are more common and where many dog lovers adopt stray dogs and puppies as their first pet, or already own a pedigree dog, but want to adopt a second.

With their busy lifestyles, people prefer to buy in large quantities, possibly taking advantage of discounts and limiting store visits. Because Indian dog owners tend to lack knowledge about the canine diet, they are greatly influenced by veterinarians who suggest certain types and brands of dog food.

Growth leads to more international players to India

In January 2018, Nestlé announced it would launch packaged dog food in India. Starting with premium packaged dog food, the company entered India with a new entity, Purina Petcare India Pvt Ltd, which will operate as a subsidiary of Nestlé SA.

Dog food in India: historical and forecast market segmentation in US$ million
Category 2014 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018 Share % 2018 2019 2023 CAGR* % 2019-2023
Total dog food 134.7 277.6 19.8 100.0 318.4 575.7 16.0
Dry dog food 117.2 245.0 20.2 88.3 282.0 518.9 16.5
Economy dry dog food 74.4 175.1 23.9 63.1 207.5 420.6 19.3
Premium dry dog food 38.6 63.11 13.1 22.7 67.2 88.0 7.0
Mid-priced dry dog food 4.2 6.8 12.8 2.4 7.3 10.2 8.7
Wet dog food 2.0 3.6 15.8 1.3 4.0 6.5 12.9
Mid-priced wet dog food 2.0 3.6 15.8 1.3 4.0 6.5 12.9
Dog treats 15.5 29.1 17.1 10.5 32.3 50.3 11.7

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

In 2017, Global pet food manufacturer Mars Inc. recorded a 53.3% share in the Indian dog food market, although its growth decreased at a CAGR of −2.5% from 2014 to 2017. Indian Broiler Group had a 12.4% market share in 2017 and a CAGR of 9.3% from 2013 to 2017. Russo Mangimi SpA had the highest CAGR of 103.1% from 2013 (0.1% share) to 2017 (1.7% share). The share of all other companies in the dog food market was below 1.3% in 2017.

Top five companies' retail market shares in dog food, % breakdown
Company 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Mars Inc. 58.9 61.6 58.7 56.8 53.3 −2.5
Indian Broiler Group 8.7 9.9 11.0 11.9 12.4 9.3
Stylam Sydney 2.0 2.5 2.3 2.3 2.3 3.6
Russo Mangimi SpA 0.1 1.1 1.3 1.6 1.7 103.1
Charoen Pokphand Group 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.2 1.3 6.8
Others 29.3 23.8 25.5 26.2 29.0 −0.3

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

The top two brands, Pedigree and Royal Canin, are owned by Mars Inc. and accounted for 48.8% market share in 2017, although both brands' growth decreased at a CAGR of −2.2% and −3.6%, respectively from 2013 to 2017. The third biggest brand, Drools (Indian Broiler Group), represented 12.4% market share in 2017 and grew at a CAGR of 9.3% from 2013 to 2017. The market share of the other brands were all below 2.3% in 2017.

Top five brands of dog food, % breakdown, 2013-2017
Brand 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Pedigree (Mars Inc.) 36.8 36.1 35.3 35.4 33.7 −2.2
Royal Canin (Mars Inc.) 17.5 18.0 17.9 16.5 15.1 −3.6
Drools (Indian Broiler Group) 8.7 9.9 11.0 11.9 12.4 9.3
Stylam Choostix (Stylam Sydney) 2.0 2.5 2.3 2.3 2.3 3.6
N & D (Russo Mangimi SpA) 1.0 1.1 1.5 1.5 14.5

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

Cat food

Cat ownership in India is 10 times lower than dog ownership due to religious and vegetarian reasons. Most Indians (Hindus in general) do not own cats as pets because in Hindu mythology, cats are regarded as a bad omen.

Most vegetarian families in India avoid cats as they are perceived as being strictly carnivorous, unlike dogs, which are more of an omnivore and can eat various types of food and survive in most cities and villages without much of a problem. Vegetarians consider cats to be impure since they eat only non-vegetarian food like meat, flesh, rats and other small mammals, and young birds and animals.

People who have pet cats usually feed them milk and home-made food leading to lower purchases of cat food. In addition, people believe cats are usually raised to catch mice and feed themselves. While cat lovers tend to consult veterinarians about how to feed cats and usually purchase the cat food they suggest, such cat owners are very small in number and usually live only in urban regions of India. Cats are very particular about the kind of food they consume, and cat owners are therefore often obliged to buy very specific types of cat food.

Recently, Indians living in cities have been adopting more cats as companions, often purchasing expensive foreign breeds as a status symbol. With the population of pet cats growing in India, demand for cat food is expected to increase over the forecast period.

Cat food sales grew strongly from 2014 (US$4.0 million) to 2018 (US$6.6 million) at a CAGR of 13.3% and is forecast to grow at a CAGR of 9.1% from 2019 (US$7.2 million) to 2023 (US$10.2 million). Dry cat food represented 84.8% of cat food sales in 2018 and recorded a CAGR of 14.1% from 2014 (US$3.3 million) to 2018 (US$5.6 million). In the dry cat food category, mid-priced dry cat food recorded the highest retail sales of US$4.9 million in 2018 and had a CAGR of 13.0% from 2014 to 2018. In the wet cat food category, premium wet cat food recorded the highest sales of US$1.1 million. There are many mid-priced cat food brands that compete against international counterparts. Mid-priced cat food is affordable, but over time, consumers are expected to trade up to premium food.

As the pet cat population increases, manufacturers expect that the number of cat owners will gradually increase and that more pet owners will begin to value the advice of specialist retailers. This trend is set to support the development of all types of cat food, targeting cat owners who regard their cats as family members and are concerned about the health of their pets. Cat treats and mixers have yet to pick up in India since dry and wet cat food is in its early formative stages. Treats and mixers are usually fed to pets between meals to reduce hunger pangs or sometimes to train or reward them. Since few cats are domesticated, cat treats sales have remained negligible.

Premium cat food is expected to maintain growth during the forecast period

Mars International India Pvt Ltd and Royal Canin India Pvt Ltd together dominated premium cat food value sales with most coming from dry cat food in 2017. However, the companies saw low production volumes due to lack of availability of raw materials, which resulted in their falling short of meeting the demand for Indian cat food in 2017. Hence, overall premium cat food saw much slower retail value growth in 2017. However, in the last few months of 2017, these companies invested in procuring raw materials in a timely manner to satisfy the growing needs of premium cat food across the world, including India. Many cat owners shifted from economy and mid-priced cat food to premium products, and demand for premium cat food is expected to continue to grow during the forecast period.

Cat food in India: historical and forecast market segmentation in US$ million
Category 2014 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018 Share % 2018 2019 2023 CAGR* % 2019-2023
Total cat food 4.0 6.6 13.3 100 7.2 10.2 9.1
Dry cat food 3.3 5.6 14.1 84.8 6.0 8.5 9.1
Premium dry cat food 3.0 4.9 13.0 74.2 5.3 7.3 8.3
Mid-priced dry cat food 0.3 0.7 15.0 10.6 0.7 1.2 10.7
Economy dry cat food N/C N/C N/C
Wet cat food 0.7 1.1 12.0 16.7 1.2 1.6 7.5
Premium wet cat food 0.7 1.1 12.0 16.7 1.2 1.6 7.5
Cat treats and mixers N/C N/C N/C

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

N/C: Not calculable

The top company in the cat food category, Mars Inc., accounted for 77.3% of the market share in retail sales in 2017, although its growth decreased slightly to −0.9% from 2013 to 2017. The market share of the rest of the companies was below 2.6% in 2017.

There was also considerable movement between mid-priced, economy and premium cat food based on the number of cats owned and the owners' budgets. This was due to the fact that a large group of cat owners usually feed their cats homemade food or milk and seldom purchase prepared cat food. Hence, mid-priced cat food companies like Perfect Companion Co Ltd and Indian Broiler Group saw good growth in their mid-priced cat food products in India.

Top five companies' retail market shares in cat food, % breakdown
Company 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Mars Inc. 80.1 83.2 78.9 78.2 77.3 −0.9
Indian Broiler Group 1.9 2.1 2.4 2.5 2.6 8.2
Charoen Pokphand Group 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.6 1.6
Petsmart Pet Products Pvt Ltd 1.9 1.7 1.5 1.3 1.3 −9.1
Venkateshwara Hatcheries Pvt Ltd 0.6 0.6 0.5 0.5 0.5 −4.5
Others 14.0 10.9 15.2 16.0 16.7 4.5

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

The top two brands, Whiskas and Royal Canin, are owned by Mars Inc., accounting for 70.0% market share in 2017. Growth of both brands decreased slightly at a CAGR of −0.7% and −1.8%, respectively, from 2013 to 2017.

The market share of other brands were all below 2.6% in 2017. It is worth noting that the third largest brand, Drools (Indian Broiler Group), grew at a CAGR of 8.2% from 2013 to 2017.

Top five brands of cat food, % breakdown, 2013-2017
Brand 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Whiskas (Mars Inc.) 49.3 48.7 48.2 48.4 48.0 −0.7
Royal Canin (Mars Inc.) 23.7 24.3 23.5 22.4 22.0 −1.8
Drools (Indian Broiler Group) 1.9 2.1 2.4 2.5 2.6 8.2
Me-O (Charoen Pokphand Group) 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.6 1.6
Top Cat (Petsmart Pet Products Pvt Ltd) 1.2 1.1 1.0 0.9 0.8 −9.6

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

Other pet food

The other pet food category grew well from 2014 to 2018, with a CAGR of 18.9%, and is forecast to continue at a CAGR of 16.4% from 2019 to 2023, reaching a retail sales value of US$1.1 million by 2023.

Fish food made up the majority (66.7% in 2018) of the other pet food sales. It grew at a CAGR of 18.9% from 2014 to 2018 and is expected to continue to grow at a CAGR of 8.8% from 2019 to 2023. The fish food market is fragmented and disorganized in India, as many regional manufacturers provide a variety of fish food products, including popular products such as flakes, pellets, dried worms, plankton, krill, fish formula and seaweed. In addition to fish, other aquatic animals are kept as pets, such as mini crabs, molluscs, shrimp and snails. The diets of these aquatic creatures differ not only by species but also by size, with companies such as Tropical Industry and Pacific Blue Taiwan specializing in catering to the fish food needs of all varieties. Fish food will continue to perform well during the forecast period as more people keep fish as pets and many fish sellers come to the cities with both domestic and international fish varieties. Demand for premium fish food is also set to grow as people look for exotic fish species to keep at home and will want to feed them the best food.

Bird food growth remained unchanged from 2014 to 2018 with its small retail value of US$0.1 million in 2018, but is expected to grow at a strong CAGR of 10.7% from 2019 to 2023. Pet birds are a long-standing tradition in India, where birds such as pigeons are raised for flying competitions and cocks are raised for fighting. These birds are fed high quality dry nuts and protein rich food. Since most bird owners rely on fruit, millet, seeds and other such protein-rich diets, they rarely buy food manufactured specifically for birds. However, in urban regions, birds are preferred as pets to dogs and cats, since they are smaller, easier to take care of, and cost far less to maintain. Food for birds also differs according to species. Hence, the bird food market is highly disorganized and many regional manufacturers specialize in providing food for certain species of birds only. The future for bird food looks bright as many people opt for birds as pets, which will effectively help maintain strong performance during the forecast period.

With India's increased exposure to foreign cultures and lifestyles, small animals such as chipmunks, rabbits and guinea pigs that are quiet and easy to take care of have become popular pets. These animals require less space, are usually kept caged and are given to young children as pets. Food for such animals usually consists of vegetables, fruit and grains, and there are few companies specializing in providing such food in India. Therefore, small pet owners depend on international brands such as Zupreem and Vitapol for food for their pets. Very few people in India keep reptiles, such as turtles, frogs and toads, as pets, but if they do, they seldom buy prepared food for such animals and mostly feed them fresh vegetables, fruit, eggs and live worms. Since the population of small mammal/reptiles is small, the demand for food for that category of pets had the slowest growth rate (CAGR: 0.1%) from 2014 to 2018.

Other pet food in India: historical and forecast market segmentation in US$ million
Category 2014 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018 Share % 2018 2019 2023 CAGR* % 2019-2023
Total other pet food 0.3 0.6 18.9 100.0 0.7 1.1 16.4
Fish food 0.2 0.4 18.9 66.7 0.5 0.7 8.8
Bird food 0.1 0.1 0.0 16.7 0.2 0.3 10.7
Small mammal/reptile food 0.0 0.1 N/C 16.7 0.0 0.1 N/C

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

N/C: Not calculable

The top five companies accounted for 38.4% of the retail market share in 2017, with Tropical Industry taking the lead (12.1%), followed by Vitakraft Pet Care GmbH & Co KG (8.2%), Pacific Blue Taiwan (8.2%), Indian Broiler Group (5.6%) and Spectrum Brands Holdings Inc. (4.3%).

Pacific Blue Taiwan and other companies offered premium fish food products, which are tailored to specific species, and many vendors import foreign brands to meet the demand for premium fish food products in India.

Top five companies' retail market shares in other pet food, % breakdown
Company 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Tropical Industry 9.3 9.0 9.6 11.0 12.1 6.8
Vitakraft Pet Care GmbH & Co KG 7.8 8.2 8.2 2.5
Pacific Blue Taiwan 7.9 8.0 8.0 8.1 8.2 0.9
Indian Broiler Group 5.1 5.8 5.9 5.6 3.2
Spectrum Brands Holdings Inc. 4.4 4.4 4.4 4.4 4.3 −0.6

Source: Euromonitor International, 2018

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

The top brand, Taiyo, had 12.1% market share in 2017, followed by Sun Seed (8.2%), Toto (8.2%), Drools (5.6%) and Tetra (4.3%). Taiyo is India's No. 1 selling fish food brand. Sun Seed had the highest CAGR of 56.1% from 2013 to 2017.

Top five brands of other pet food, % breakdown, 2013-2017
Other pet food 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 CAGR* % 2013-2017
Taiyo (Tropical Industry) 9.3 9.0 9.6 11.0 12.1 6.8
Sun Seed (Vitakraft Pet Care GmbH & Co KG) 7.8 8.2 8.2 56.1
Toto (Pacific Blue Taiwan) 7.9 8.0 8.0 8.1 8.2 0.9
Drools (Indian Broiler Group) 5.1 5.8 5.9 5.6 3.2
Tetra (Spectrum Brands Holdings Inc.) 4.4 4.4 4.4 4.4 4.3 −0.6

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

Distribution channels for pet food

In 2018, pet shops were the largest distribution channel (41.9%) in India, followed by veterinary clinics (39.9%). However growth in pet shops decreased at a CAGR of −2.9% from 2014 to 2018. Although online retailing had only 0.9% share in 2018, it grew at a CAGR of 10.7% from 2014 to 2018. Customers can buy pet food online at Amazon India and other websites such as Petsworld. Hypermarkets (8.3% share) and supermarkets (7.4% share) grew at a CAGR of 3.6% and 3.3%, respectively, from 2014 to 2018.

Distribution channels in % share 2014-2018
Channel 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018
Store-based retailing 62.1 61.8 60.6 59.0 59.2 −1.2
Grocery retailers 14.5 15.2 15.7 16.5 16.7 3.6
Hypermarkets 7.2 7.6 7.8 8.2 8.3 3.6
Supermarkets 6.5 6.8 7.0 7.4 7.4 3.3
Other grocery retailers 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.9 0.9 3.0
 Non-grocery specialists 47.6 46.6 44.9 42.5 42.5 −2.8
Pet superstores 0.3 0.4 0.4 0.5 0.5 13.6
Pet shops 47.2 46.2 44.4 41.9 41.9 −2.9
Health and beauty specialist retailers 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.1 0.0
Non-store retailing (Internet) 0.6 0.7 0.7 0.8 0.9 10.7
Non-retail channels (veterinary clinics) 37.3 37.5 38.7 40.2 39.9 1.7

Source: Euromonitor International, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

Indian imports of pet foods

In 2018, India imported US$45.3 million in pet food from global suppliers. In terms of value, the top two exporting countries, Thailand and France, accounted for 60.8% of the total imports. Thailand's exports to India grew at a CAGR of 37.5% from 2014 to 2018. Canada was India's eighth-largest pet food supplier. Pet food imports from Canada doubled from US$379,059 in 2017 to US$763,826 in 2018 and accounted for 1.7% of India's total pet food imports. Other countries entered this market, including South Africa (starting in 2017).

Indian pet food imports from top 10 countries in US$ (Harmonized System codes: 230910, 100830)
Country 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 CAGR* % 2014-2018 Share % 2018
World 19,524,499 21,294,126 23,810,015 32,745,947 45,258,297 23.4 100.0
Thailand 5,368,380 7,031,647 8,099,945 12,359,779 19,180,626 37.5 42.4
France 10291417 10,851,537 9,829,126 11,344,268 8,339,977 −5.1 18.4
South Africa 0 0 0 803,047 6,178,087 669.3 13.7
Italy 602,747 707,976 970,444 1,690,698 2,218,056 38.5 4.9
Spain 226,006 284,293 1,154,746 1,627,543 1,848,199 69.1 4.1
United States 227,784 88,411 75,823 196,816 1,155,233 50.1 2.6
China 317,956 461,797 547,574 654,477 958,125 31.8 2.1
Canada 143 100 191,184 379,059 763,826 754.9 1.7
Australia 141,324 97,231 0 0 627,156 45.1 1.4
Germany 139,285 141,290 97,843 202,373 593,808 43.7 1.3

Source: Global Trade Tracker, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

From 2014 to 2018, three Canadian provinces exported pet food to India, led by Alberta at US$809,157 in 2018, accounting for 97.6% of Canada's total pet food exports (US$829,127) to India, followed by Saskatchewan (US$19,970). Canada almost doubled its pet food exports to India from US$453,907 in 2017 to US$829,127 in 2018, with a CAGR of 181.9% from 2015 to 2018 (as only "0" in 2014).

Canadian pet food: historical export by province to India in US$ (Harmonized System codes: 230910, 100830)
Province 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 CAGR* % 2015-2018
Total 0 37,019 565,968 453,970 829,127 181.9
Alberta 0 37,019 181,588 371,886 809,157 179.6
Saskatchewan 0 0 384,380 54,781 19,970 −77.2
Ontario 0 0 0 27,303 0 N/C

Source: Global Trade Tracker, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

N/C: Not calculable

A total of 303,519 kilograms (kg) of pet food was exported to India from Canada's three provinces in 2018, with Alberta accounting for the largest share of exports (256,469 kg), followed by Saskatchewan (47,050 kg).

Canadian pet food: historical export by province to India in kilogram (Harmonized System codes: 230910, 100830)
Province 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 CAGR* % 2015-2018
Total 0 22,866 821,732 254,783 303,519 136.8
Alberta 0 22,866 70,842 125,318 256,469 123.8
Saskatchewan 0 0 750,890 120,840 47,050 −75.0
Ontario 0 0 0 8,625 0 N/C

Source: Global Trade Tracker, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

N/C: Not calculable

Opportunities and challenges for Canada

The Indian market is segregated into urban and rural markets and is a major attraction for global corporations. Over 871.4 million Indians live in rural areas, compared to 449.7 million in urban areas (Euromonitor International 2019). While the urban population is growing at more than double the rate of rural areas as migrants move to cities in search of opportunity, it will likely be several decades before India's urban population becomes the majority.

Given the expected continued growth in the pet food market in India, Canadian pet food producers have an opportunity to expand their exports to that country. That said, it is important for Canadian exporters to work closely with their importing partners to ensure that India's import requirements are met and that the necessary documentation is provided.

Basic Market Entry Strategies

Canadian companies looking to enter the Indian market should act on the following points before making major investments and other commitments:

Pet trade show in India

The India International Pet Trade Fair (IIPTF) is the largest pet trade show in India. IIPTF is partly a B2B (Business-to-Business) and partly a B2C (Business-to-Consumer) event, as it showcases a wide range of pet products, along with being a platform for pet-pertinent services from all across India as well as from overseas. IIPTF is an endeavor to spread awareness of the Indian pet market's potential, among global industry members. The Canadian High Commission in India is planning to coordinate a Canadian presence at IIPTF 2019. For more information, companies interested in participating in IIPTF 2019 should reach out to india.commerce@international.gc.ca.

The AgriMarketing Program

The AgriMarketing Program is a Canadian government program that provides grants designed to support export expansion projects undertaken by agri-food and beverage companies. It offsets a portion of eligible expenses to help small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to reach export markets and perform strategic marketing projects such as participation in trade shows or government-led trade missions. As part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP), the AgriMarketing Program will provide support to agri-food and beverage companies through 2023. Interested Canadian SMEs are encouraged to apply for this grant/funding.

Product launch analysis

Between January 2014 and December 2018, 737 pet food products were launched in India, 307 of which were new products, 283 were new varieties/range extensions, 120 were new packaging, 17 were relaunches and 10 were new formulations. New packaging had the highest CAGR of 81.7% from 2014 to 2018.

Pet food launch types in India, 2014-2018
Launch type 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 Total sample CAGR* % 2014-2018
New product 41 58 50 63 95 307 65.4
New variety/range extension 42 38 57 65 81 283 61.1
New packaging 11 13 24 31 41 120 81.7
Relaunch 0 3 5 3 6 17 78.3
New formulation 0 1 2 4 3 10 44.2
Total sample 94 113 138 166 226 737 67.3

Source: Mintel, 2019

*CAGR: Compound Annual Growth Rate

From 2014 to 2018, most of the new launches were dog snacks and treats, with 437 releases, followed by dry dog food (101), dry cat food (74), wet cat food (61), wet dog food (42), and cat snacks and treats (27).

Top six sub-categories vs launch types in India, 2014-2018
Sub-category New product New variety/range extension New packaging Relaunch New formulation Total sample
Dog snacks and treats 179 175 62 11 5 432
Dry dog food 51 35 9 2 4 101
Dry cat food 20 34 19 1 0 74
Wet cat food 19 23 18 1 0 61
Wet dog food 20 10 9 2 1 42
Cat snacks and treats 18 6 3 0 0 27
Source: Mintel, 2019

Of the 737 pet food products launched from 2014 to 2018, Teeth & Tartar Prevention (functional pet) were the number one claim (259) among all sub-categories, followed by other (functional pet) (247) and skin & coat (functional pet) (197).

Top 10 claims in top six sub-categories in India, 2014-2018
Claim Dog snacks and treats Dry dog food Dry cat food Wet cat food Wet dog food Cat snacks and treats Total sample
Teeth and tartar prevention (functional pet) 183 34 25 2 13 2 259
Other (functional pet) 122 60 43 5 11 6 247
Skin and coat (functional pet) 54 57 52 9 22 4 198
Vitamin/mineral fortified 91 45 27 10 10 10 193
Joints, bones and muscles (functional pet) 76 46 32 3 17 3 177
Pet - adult 14 56 47 29 15 7 168
Functional pet - digestion 33 69 28 1 18 4 153
Premium 76 28 10 4 6 5 129
No additives/preservatives 72 24 7 17 5 2 127
Immune system (functional pet) 11 61 33 5 10 1 121
Source: Mintel, 2019

Conclusion

In India, dogs are more popular than other animals as pets. This creates a great opportunity for pet food companies to produce various food products for dogs. The dog food segment is expected to continue its dominance in the forecast five years, followed by the cat and fish food segments. Dry food is more popular category in the dog food segment.

For more information

International Trade Commissioners can provide Canadian industry with on-the-ground expertise regarding market potential, current conditions and local business contacts, and are an excellent point of contact for export advice.

For additional intelligence on this and other markets, the complete library of Global Analysis reports can be found on the International agri-food market intelligence page, arranged by region.

Resources

Sector Trend Analysis – Pet food trends in India
Global Analysis Report

Prepared by: Hongli Wang, Market Analyst

© Her Majesty the Queen in Right of Canada, represented by the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food (2019).

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