North America has largest pet food market and an impressive pet population. According to The US National Council on Pet Population Study and Policy, in 2013, around 83.3 million dogs and 95.6 million cats owned by US households and this figure will increase over the forecasted period. Pet foods are mainly sold in pet stores and supermarkets. Pet foods are mainly packaged in boxes or cartons, cans, pouches, bags and others. Bags are the most commonly packaging type used for pet food in the U.S. In the U.S. quality of pet food is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Pet food market can be segmented into pet type: cat food, dog food and others. On the basis of food type pet food market can be segmented into: Nutritious food, dry food, wet or canned food and snacks or treats and others. Cat food and dog food represent the largest category of the U.S. pet food market. Dry food is the largest segment of pet food market followed by snacks or treats.
North America continued its dominant position in the global pet food market. U.S. represents the largest market for pet food in the North America region. Increasing pet humanization, increase in pet ownership, emergence of private label store brands and growing urbanization are some of the major driving force that are propelling the growth of North America pet food market. Due to the increase in pet humanization, pet owners become more concerned about the food their pet eats. Due to the pet humanization major changes can be seen in the pet food production and packaging. Development of functional food to address specific health needs of pets. The introduction of functional pet food has also affected the packaging of the pet food. By new packaging material and shapes, pet food manufacturer’s tries to convey the premium nature of the product through new package design. With the result of this plastic containers and laminates are becoming more popular. Now the moist food is packaged in retort pouches or plastic trays with peelable lids instead of metal cans. The factor like this will boost the pet food market.
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Some of the major companies operating in the North American pet food market include Nestle, Proctor & Gamble Co., Del Monte Foods Co and Mars Inc.