The Industry Association for Pet Supplies (IVH) and the Central Association of Zoological Specialists in Germany (ZZF) have published a survey on pet trends across 2022 having interviewed 5,000 German housholds.

The results showed that larger households rather have a pet than smaller ones. 36% of households with at least 3 people keep a pet while only 29% of one-person housholds own a pet. 67% of German multi-person households have responded owning a pet.

“In an increasingly digitized and restless world, pets are an important anchor and haven of peace for many people — this is especially true for children, whose development can be promoted in many ways by animals,” stated Georg Müller, chairman of the IVH.

“The total number of pets kept in households in Germany has remained largely stable at a high level over the past few years,” explained Norbert Holthenrich, president of the ZZF. “We are extremely pleased about that. Keeping pets can greatly enrich people’s lives. It is important that the focus is always on the welfare of the animals and their needs.”

Along with the large pet population, also pet food sales have increased. Sales of prepared pet food in conventional stores increased by 9.5% to €4.03 billion. In 2022, 78% of all pet care sales accounted for pet food.

“In the pet food sector, sales increased for the most part,” Müller said. “This is mainly due to the current inflation. Like manufacturers of other everyday products, producers of ready-to-eat pet food have also had to raise their prices in view of the sometimes immense cost increases in energy, packaging and logistics.”

It is not a big surprise that cat food has experienced the highest sales growth with 12.5% (€2.01 billion ($2.22 billion USD)) while dog food sales increased by 7.8% to achieving €1.81 billion (nearly $2 billion USD).

IVH and ZZF has differentiated the brick-and-mortar channel into food retail and specialized trade retailers. 62% of pet foods were sold in food retail stores (€2.5 billion ($2.76 billion USD)) and 38% in specialized locations (€1.52 billion ($1.68 billion USD)).

“In retail, pet owners regularly asked about pet food and other everyday items, such as cat litter,” Holthenrich stated. “In the case of necessities and accessories such as dog beds or scratching posts, however, purchases were postponed in 2022. The effects of the tense financial situation of many consumers were increasingly felt here.”

E-commerce pet sales increased by 14% to €1.2 billion ($1.32 billion USD). In spite of the increase, the associations stated that “no differentiated, species-specific data on the online market is available.”

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