Global pet food market: Pet shops remain crucial retail outlets in emerging markets

Press release   •   May 01, 2013 14:14 BST

Looking at the most important retail format for pet food - based on 2012 retail value sales – it is notable that pet shops remain crucial for many national markets worldwide. They are especially important in emerging markets, especially in Asia Pacific, Eastern Europe and Brazil.

By contrast, non-specialist supermarkets and hypermarkets dominate pet food distribution in developed markets across Western Europe, as well as in Canada. This reflects the well-established presence of modern grocery retailers in these markets, with pet food typically purchased with other groceries.

That said, the importance of pet superstores in the US is striking, thanks to the likes of PetSmart.

Over recent years, global pet care has not experienced a massive shift in terms of retail distribution. Non-grocery retailers maintain a healthy lead over other formats, thanks to pet specialist retailers, including pet shops, pet superstores and veterinary clinics. More importantly, retail value sales continued to grow steadily year-on-year between 2007 and 2012.

However, non-grocery retailers' aggregate retail value share has been declining steadily in recent years. Part of this is down to increasing competitive pressures from hypermarkets, supermarkets and discounters. These retailers have generally outperformed their specialist rivals thanks to their lower prices, increasing ubiquity (notably in emerging markets), extended opening hours and other modern conveniences.

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