Pet healthcare witnessed a regulatory shift over the review period, which entailed the reclassification of flea/tick treatments containing anti-parasitics to be categorised as medicine, and therefore only be available through pharmacies and veterinary clinics as over-the-counter products. Following this disruption, the category slowly stabilised, as more manufacturers launched flea/tick treatments based on natural ingredients that were therefore available in pet shops and pet superstores.
Mirroring the healthy living trend in packaged food, Belgians are becoming ever more mindful about what they put into their own bodies as well as those of their pets. The emotional wellbeing of their pets has become a particular focus area, with consumers concerned about the stress levels of pets living in small urban spaces.
Belgian pet owners are showing themselves to be increasingly willing to spend more money on their pets and this is leading to non-pet care manufacturers diversifying into this category. For example, in 2018, the furniture and home furnishings retailer IKEA and other stores like Maisons du Mondes started to trial new collections of pet accessories for the home, which they plan to roll out across the EU in 2019.
Beaphar focuses its efforts on pet dietary supplements and pet healthcare products. Following very intense innovation in dietary supplements and healthcare earlier in the review period, the company focused on broadening its offering in cat treats.
Cat litter is witnessing the launch of more products in the premium segment. Premiumisation in this category is taking the form of all-natural, soft on the skin/fur, high quality and eco-friendly products.
Tapping into the premiumisation and pet humanisation trends, pet product manufacturers are treating pets more like children, for example by involving them in more family occasions such as Christmas, birthdays and family meals. Flamingo Pet Products, the leading player in other pet products, offers a Christmas range for pets, comprising products such as Christmas stockings for cats, advent calendars featuring various treats and cat danglers.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Pet Care market research database.