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Crisis-proof pet sector?

Updated: 2 days ago

A blog post by Stefano Pettinella - Partner und Pet Industry Lead

Last week, my partner Michael Witt explored the question of whether one should dare to change jobs "in uncertain times". Here, of course, the question arises whether there are perhaps particularly "crisis-proof" industries? Of course, we know that seasonal, cyclical or geopolitical fluctuations are normal. What many people don't realize, however, is that some industries are more "recession-resistant" than others. And this undoubtedly includes the pet industry, which I can fully confirm after 25 years of working internationally in this industry.

But why is that? We know that the number of pets has been growing unabated for decades. Currently, there are almost as many pets as people in the EU plus the UK: around 407 million. In the EU, the three largest markets are Germany, France and Italy. Over the past decade, pet food sales in the EU have doubled, growing twice as fast as food. Even during the pandemic, the pet food industry has proven to be crisis resistant - despite many challenges such as the turbulence in the commodity markets, logistics or the boom in online retailing.

Underlying these very impressive figures are weighty trends. It is undisputed that pets are increasingly regarded as members of the family. But not only that. Sometimes they are even regarded as "child substitutes", which then gives dogs and cats in particular a much higher status within families. This trend is very much driven by "Millennials" and "Generation Z". In this role, however, pets also take on other important social tasks, according to the results of a long-term study on grief management. When older people lose their life partners through separation or death, pets such as dogs and cats help them cope better with phases of depression or loneliness or even overcome them.

Another trend is "premiumization," which results from the desire of many consumers, especially younger ones, to give their four-legged friends the best quality and the best nutrition. This is, of course, coupled with an increasing willingness to spend more for the right nutrition.

Would you like to learn more about opportunities in the pet industry?

Feel free to contact us. Our advice on professional and career issues in agribusiness and the pet industry in particular is free of charge and we will help you answer all your questions - regardless of whether you have many years of experience or are just starting out in your career.

Based on our many years of personnel and industry expertise, we will provide you with competent support to ensure an excellent 'match' between you and our clients.

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