Pet Food grows packaging industry

IPACK-IMA 2009 Milan

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IPACK-IMA 2009 will be strategic to the growth of the pet food industry. According to a press release from the organizers, this market is in fact dodging the crisis that is affecting the entire industry of consumer goods. The latest surveys by international institutes such as Iri and Euromonitor International report only a slight decrease in this industry over the last months. The growth rate over the last five years has been a yearly 5% on average, in particular +5,2% in 2007. IPACK-IMA, the reference exhibition for packaging and agro-food processing technology on stage at FieraMilano from 24 to 28 March, will feature a specific thematic area dedicated to technology and materials for the pet food industry.

Pet food production and distribution play an important role in the packaging industry. The pet food market is becoming increasingly diversified in term of preparations and segmentation between standard and upscale products. In terms of quantity, the Italian market, of which 90% is made up of cat and dog food, has a volume of approximately 500,000 tons per year, 58% of which is imported and 42% produced domestically. In terms of money the market was worth more than 1,300 million euros (approximately 8,450 crore INR) in 2007 (source: Assalco Report 2008), including pet \””snacks and treats.\””

The industry employs a wide range of packaging types and strongly focuses on the handiness and ease of use of the packages to increase market share. The industry is expected to grow especially on the domestic market since Italy is rapidly filling the gap with other countries where keeping pets is a more widespread habit, in terms of regular use of packaged food. According to the most recent data available (source GN Research), in Italy 61% of pet owners feed them with packaged food compared to an average 85% in the most advanced European countries and the USA.

The thematic area \””Feed and Pet Food\”” in IPACK-IMA 2009 today features 85 exhibiting companies displaying leading-edge technological solutions, both in terms of machinery and materials — for pet food industry professionals, and marketing managers from distribution chains since private brand products account for more than 20% of the market.

Different kinds of pet food employ aluminum and steel cans, aluminum trays, flexible polylaminate bags, paper bags, cardboard boxes and polylaminate cellulose containers; snacks and treats also employ processing and packaging techniques used for human consumption.

The successful performance of the pet food industry is exceptionally important for packaging manufacturers on account of the general decrease in the demand for consumer goods. Along the exhibition, IPACK-IMA will host a meeting promoted by ANFIMA (National Association of Manufacturers of Metal Packaging and Related Products) focused on this subject and the opportunities thus created: “Petfood and metal packaging: the reasons for its success.”