U.S. Pet Market Outlook, 2023-2024
The “pandemic years” of 2020 and 2021 were boom years for the U.S. pet industry, with sales up 9.8% and 13.7%, respectively. During 2022, however, the market’s 9% growth was largely a function of inflation. Although the economic headwinds cooled sales in some of the more discretionary categories, the industry overall has fared well vis-à-vis other consumer markets. In Packaged Facts’ Surveys of Pet Owners, pet products and services are at the bottom of the list of household spending cutbacks, second only to human medicine and healthcare. Reflecting both the higher prices and Americans’ deep commitments to their pets, pet parents remain tenacious when it comes to pet care, with 68% spending more in February 2023 vs. January 2022 even as they looked for ways to economize.
With the industry continuing to trend in omnichannel and omnimarket directions, and M&A and investment activity still going strong, Packaged Facts anticipates ongoing advancement across all pet industry sectors through 2027, when sales are expected to top $190 billion. Characterizing a gradual return to normalcy during the forecast period will be the reinvigoration of trends including premiumization, health & wellness, sustainability, and all things digital including e-commerce, although the most positive short-term factor will likely be the expected gradual lessening of inflation.
Scope and Methodology
This report analyzes current and projects future retail sales and trends across the U.S. pet industry. It examines collectively and separately four sectors of products and services – pet food, non-food pet supplies, veterinary services, and non-medical pet services (including grooming, boarding, daycare, sitting/walking, and pet insurance) – paying particular attention to the impact of the post pandemic economy, omnichannel and omnimarket strategizing, and consumer mindsets and product and service preferences.
The information contained in this report was obtained from primary and secondary research. Our consumer analysis draws mainly on two sources:
Packaged Facts’ Surveys of Pet Owners conducted on a regular basis, including four surveys conducted between November 2022 and March 2023. These surveys have samples of 1,350-2,000 U.S. respondents age 18 or over, with the aggregate sample of each survey representative of the national population by the primary demographic measures of gender, age bracket, race/ethnicity, geographic region, household income bracket, and presence of children in the household.
MRI-Simmons booklet-based consumer surveys of a large and random sample of approximately 25,000 consumers through Fall 2022, who in aggregate represent a statistically accurate cross-section of the U.S. population. Note that MRI-Simmons releases correspond to an approximately 12-month roll-up of survey fielding ending in the quarter indicated; the respondents and results for adjacent surveys are therefor partially overlapping, rather than mutually exclusive.
Our primary research also includes interviews with pet market experts and participation in pet industry events including the American Pet Products Association’s Global Pet Expos, Petfood Industry/Watt Publishing’s Petfood Forums, the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council’s Pet Industry Leadership Summit, and the North American Veterinary Community (NAVC) VMX Veterinary Conferences and Media E-Commerce Summits, The analysis also reflects on-site examination of retail and service provider venues and internet canvassing.
Secondary research includes information- and data-gathering from consumer business and trade publications including Pet Age, Pet Business, Pet Product News International, Petfood Industry, and Veterinary Practice News; company profiles in trade and consumer publications; annual reports of companies in the pet market; and information culled from Packaged Facts’ extensive pet market research database and report collection. Our estimates of market size and company performance are based on reported revenues of pet product manufacturers, retailers, and pet services providers; background sales data from syndicated sales-tracking sources; surveys of independent and chain pet store retailers; government data including U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Surveys; and figures from other market research sources.
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