Although sales of pet healthcare and pet dietary supplements remained relatively low both in actual terms and in their share of pet products, the increasing humanisation of pets and product launches boosted sales in 2019. This is likely to continue, especially with the growing interest in raw feeding (BARF) which calls for supplementary products.
It has been legal to take a dog into certain consumer foodservice premises in Finland since 2012, and this is encouraging the humanisation trend for dogs. Some establishments have even gone a step further and are even offering dog-specific items, such as dog beer.
Even academic researchers have woken up to the business opportunities afforded by expanding humanisation crossed with smart technology offerings. Since 2017, Best Friend Group, for example, has been partnering with research organisations and other pet industry players such as Vetcare Ltd and Kaunila, a company that produces dog activity trackers, in the Turre ja Toivoset 2.
Best Friend Group continued to lead pet products in 2018, benefiting from its wide distribution network and extensive range of cat litter and other pet products. Its Best Friend brand of cat litter has a strong presence in modern grocery and mixed retailers, while lacking a significant presence in pet shops.
A long-standing feature in Finland is that many pet owners are projecting their own lifestyle choices onto their pets, with owners who are switching to organic products in their diets often also preferring their pets to have less processed alternatives in their daily food intake. The same is true in dietary supplements, and manufacturers are trying to respond to this demand by launching products specifically for pets aimed at improving general health and wellbeing, bone and joint health or providing digestive remedies and cures.
Private label held a relatively small share of pet products in 2018, and its presence was limited to cat litter, in which it held a reasonable share. Even so, its share was significantly lower than its shares in the economy categories of dog and cat food, where its consolidated shares often placed it in leading positions.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Pet Care market research database.