The pet food industry remains healthy with the value of pet food in 2014 growing by £10m to hit £2.8bn. Volume-wise, however, the total pet food market saw a slight dip of 2% to 1,476,000 tonnes.
The figures were released by the Pet Food Manufacturers Association in its latest annual report, whose 67 members account for more than 90% of the UK market. Its data is therefore based on actual production figures. The figures are consistent with falling pet ownership, it said.
Strong growth has been demonstrated in the dog and cat treats category. Dog treats showed growth of 5% in volume and 7% in value in 2014 to reach £395 million. PFMA chief executive Michael Bellingham said: “The market in 2014 is twice as big as in 2002 in terms of value.”
Cat treats continued its double-digit growth with a 17% increase in value, and is nudging £120 million.
The dog food market saw a slight dip in volume to 830,000 tonnes, with value staying on par at £1.3 billion. This works out to an average of £150 per dog per annum, with 35% of dogs being fed wet, and 50% fed dry food.
In the cat food sector, volume has seen a dip of 2% to 405,000 tonnes. Multi-serve wet cat food saw the strongest drop of 7% in volume, down to 102,000 tonnes, while single-serve cat food continues to grow in favour among owners and registered a modest 1% rise in volume to reach 209,000 tonnes.
Value of the total cat food market remains constant at just over £1 billion, which equates to spending approximately £130 on each cat per year. Wet food is the preferred food of owners, with 75% of cats being offered wet against a 22% figure for dry food; the wet cat food sector is valued at £707 million.
The small animal market has remained fairly constant, with total volume for rabbits, guinea pigs and rodents hovering around the 75,000 tonnes figure. Value has seen a slight drop of about 2% to £73 million. The rabbit category remains dominant with 53,000 tonnes, and is valued at £52 million.
Other PFMA figures show the wild bird market is valued at £210 million (150,000 tonnes), caged and aviary birds has a value of £12 million (13,000 tonnes), and fish is £72 million (3,000 tonnes).
The PFMA says there has been a slight decline in volume of caged and aviary bird food of 2%, while value of sales fell by 4%, but this reflects the wider fall in pet population seen over the past two to three years. However, the PFMA notes that the relatively small size of the pet bird population means it is difficult to give a certain estimate.