In France in 2010, nearly 18 million households owned a pet. As a result, France is the world leader in the proportion of domestic animals per capita. In 2015, the pet market is worth around 4.2 billion euros, of which 3 million euros will be devoted to food. The market turnover amounts to 1.6 billion euros, including more than one billion euros in exports, and the sector provides more than 6000 direct jobs. It is the cat sector that is driving the market the most with +3.4% growth, while pet food for dogs is only up 0.4%. The budget for animal feed continues to increase, with most owners spending between 15 and 75 euros per month. More than 80% of pet owners now buy industrially prepared food.
The French pet food market is highly concentrated, the two main players being Nestlé, which owns the Gourmet, Felix, Friskies and Fido brands, and Mars, with its Petcare division and its subsidiary Royal Canin. The two animal food giants have a turnover of 1.7 billion euros. In addition, the animal food range is increasingly segmented according to breed and animal needs (sterilised cats, senior dogs, etc.) and the range is constantly increasing. The aspect of health and nutrition is becoming essential for consumers, who are increasingly opting for recipes that improve digestion or combat obesity. Snacks are also growing considerably, becoming the most dynamic segment of the market. Snack products, such as biscuits, or oral hygiene products account for nearly 11% of dog food sales.
The main way of distribution for animal food is the mass distribution channel, which makes up 55% of the market. However, specialized channels remain important, and the share of "hard discounts" is growing significantly.
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