More than 50% of pet food and treat purchases in the US contain functional food ingredients.  It’s more important than ever to communicate healthy pet food/treat content.
More than half the time, pet food consumers are searching for functional ingredients listed on the label.
Pet Food Industry Magazine released this infographic this week; the data is based on the March 2016 Packaged Facts Report on pet food in the US. While each functional food category in the chart has relatively low percentages, in sum total they amount to more than 50% of purchases for dogs and cats. If conversations start at home, through newsletters and social media, pet owners will know what they’re looking for before they ever get to the purchase point. Furthermore, staff training on the benefits of functional foods by the food retailer sales staff, will only benefit product sales.
As you know from your own conversations with consumers, it is not until pet owners either perceive or recognize health problems exist for their pets that they will seek food cures for their dogs and cats. However, once these pet owners realize the benefits of superior ingredients, they are converts for life – meaning the life of the owner and their future generations of pets.
One method to catch the eye of consumers is to promote health benefits of each functional food ingredient used in your brand. Constant reinforcement of what consumers are doing right builds brand loyalty. Explaining the health benefits of functional food ingredients translates into encouragement and positive reinforcement of future purchases.
Has your company made a list of all of your functional ingredients? One suggestion would be to feature one ingredient each week and explain its benefits – social media is a great outlet for this. By communicating with your customers, you join them in the same healthy pet food reality, improving their affinity for your product.
More and more, pet owners will study labels for the presence of functional foods in treats and pet food. Because members (actual and future) of Next Gen PFMA already use these ingredients, talk them up!
A future benefit for members of Next Gen PFMA: this content can be created for you. Of course, always following the guidelines put forth by state and federal regulatory agencies.

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