Nutritional science, as well as consumer and feline preferences, drive trends and variety in the cat food aisle.
By LaRue Palmer
Published: 2017.09.01 10:30 AM
The finicky nature of cats is legendary, which can make it challenging for a pet owner to maintain a healthful diet for them. Pet food manufacturers are burning the midnight oil trying to create the right formula of food that will satisfy not only the nutritional needs for every life stage given cats picky nature, but also the humanistic values and tastes of the doting pet owner.
The category is expanding with new options as manufacturers seek to meet customers varied demands.
The cat food category is clearly following in the footsteps of dog food, with an increased number of natural offerings and unique protein sources, said Ann Hudson, vice president at Whitebridge Pet Brands in St. Louis. The pursuit of the perfect feline diet has led manufacturers to new sources of meat and fish, and new ways of processing to be able to incorporate more fresh proteins into dry foods. Everyone knows cats are carnivores, but figuring out how to get the perfect carnivore diet into a can or bag is still a challenge for most manufacturers.
Dry cat food continues to dominate sales in the category. According to a report published by Statistaan online statistics company based in Hamburg, with regional headquarters in London and New Yorkin 2016, U.S. premium dry cat food sales topped $534 million in sales, compared to just $219 million for the wet varieties.
Dry food is certainly still favored for its convenience and palatability, said Tracey Hatch-Rizzi, vice president and co-founder of Radagast Pet Food Inc. in Portland, Ore. But balancing that dry food with wet food is more widely recommended now. Consumers are also showing more interest in formulas that address their cats specific lifestyles or life stages.
Hudson agreed that dry foods are more popular with customers.
The wet category is clearly under-penetrated in pet specialty. Its an enormous opportunity for pet specialty retailers, and a high-quality range of nutritious wet foods gives [pet specialty retailers] a way to effectively compete, she said, adding that Whitebridge recently released its Tiki Cat After Dark wet food line, with unique proteins and real organ meat in a safely prepared and ready-to-serve package.
Raw foods are also gaining traction for cats with consumers. In fact, Leasa Greer, manager of nutrition and regulatory affairs for Solid Gold Pet based in Chesterfield, Mo., said raw feeding is not merely a trend, but a movement among cat owners.
More and more people are catching on to the fact that its a cats evolutionary diet, Greer said. Cats were the ones that would be put into the granary not to eat the grain, but to eat the vermin that would eat the grain. In the end, at least feeding your cat a little bit of raw is better than none at all.
Still, Hatch-Rizzi said there is a great of deal misinformation circulating in the cat-owning community about raw food diets.
It is really because the veterinary community is much divided about raw food diets, but when you walk into your local independent pet store, you see raw diets all over the place, she said. So youre left wondering why there is division on one side, but the healthful pet stores are all carrying all kinds of raw, raw freeze dried and even kibble with raw incorporated into it.
Stephanie Catalfio, store manager for Lous Pet Shop in Grosse Pointe Woods, Mich., for 48 years, sees a trend toward high-end premium cat food choices that carry a reputable, trustworthy name.
Personally, I feed my cat raw food and freeze dried, Catalfio said. We usually recommend the higher-quality brands of canned for our customers who we know would appreciate it. If theyre going to go dry, we have brands like Fromm Family Pet Food or Champion Petfoods, for example.
Despite the increasing popularity of raw foods, kibble is still a mainstay in the cat food category, and many consumers appreciate the convenient format.
It is correct to say that carbohydrates are not an essential nutrient for cats, said Rick Rockhill, executive vice president of Lucy Pet Products in Thousand Oaks, Calif. They need protein, fat and fiber. Yet carbohydrates fulfill a function in that they provide texture and they are literally what gives the kibble its form by pulling all the other nutrients together.
Rockhill said he believes that sometimes people forget that cats have been domesticated for thousands of years and no longer live in the wild, which is why manufacturers continually strive to create nutrient-dense formulas that are healthful and pleasing to the cat, and easy to deliver for the pet owner.
Dr. George Fahey Jr., the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign professor emeritus who helped developed formulas for Lucy Pet, pointed out that, occasionally, diets are tailored to address particular issues, such as hairballs.
We know how to control that with a specialized diet that prevents it from happening, he said.
Brendan Sykes, a sales representative for Specialty Pet Supplies in Plymouth, Mich., recommended specific diets for certain ailments.
We go to a specific hairball control formulation, which, usually, will be higher in fiber, making it easier for a cat to pass a hairball rather than them having to throw it up.
Fahey added, Others may be predisposed to renal issues, but prescription as well as over-the-counter diets can address these problems or prevent them from developing. Making these informed choices is up to the pet parent, so educating them is critical.
Manufacturers are often more than willing to help educate pet owners.
When consumers reach out to Solid Gold with pet nutrition questions, they talk to our consumer engagement specialist, Greer said. The consumer engagement specialists job is to keep our customers and sales reps properly educated and trained in the nutritional needs and functions of cats.
Read more here:
A Bountiful Assortment - PetProductNews.com
- Question about keto and metformin? MyFitnessPal.com - October 4th, 2019
- A Ketogenic Diet for Beginners The Ultimate Keto Guide ... - October 2nd, 2019
- Weight Loss, Loss weight fast, Diet Safely - Part 5 - September 12th, 2019
- Diabetes diet: Create your healthy-eating plan - Mayo Clinic - September 12th, 2019
- How Long Can Your Body Stay in Ketosis Safely? - September 12th, 2019
- How to diet - NHS - September 7th, 2019
- The Mayo Clinic Diet: A weight-loss program for life ... - September 6th, 2019
- The truth behind the most popular diet trends of the ... - July 27th, 2019
- Is the ketogenic diet safe for diabetics? ( ... - July 25th, 2019
- Ketosis for Seniors: What Should You Know? - Perfect Keto - July 22nd, 2019
- Is the Keto Diet Safe? How to Avoid Common Issues - June 21st, 2019
- drbdiet.com - Bernstein Diet & Health Clinics - May 21st, 2019
- What Is the Keto Diet (and Should You Try It)? Health ... - May 21st, 2019
- Calcium: An Important Mineral For Women - Women's Health - May 21st, 2019
- Beyonce Diet aka The Master Cleanse or Lemonade Diet - May 16th, 2019
- What should I feed my backyard chickens? RSPCA Knowledgebase - May 16th, 2019
- Eating a Plant-Based Diet: Safely Going Vegan | Nerd Fitness - April 25th, 2019
- Is the Ketogenic Diet Safe Long Term? Potential Dangers to ... - March 31st, 2019
- Weight loss: Choosing a diet that's right for you - Mayo ... - March 30th, 2019
- Ketogenic Diet Benefits (& How to Do It Right) | Wellness Mama - March 12th, 2019
- Are low carb diets safe to follow? | All Natural Ideas - March 12th, 2019
- Find Out How to Diet Safely - Food Without Fire - March 9th, 2019
- Keto Diet for Women: Food List & Tips to Overcome Side ... - March 8th, 2019
- 11 Fruits can you Eat Safely in a Ketogenic Diet - Cool ... - March 7th, 2019
- HCG Diet | HCG Drops | HCG Diet Information | Your HCG - March 6th, 2019
- All About Cat Diets How and Why to Put Your Cat on a ... - February 12th, 2019
- Foods You Can Safely Eat Past The Due Dates | ActiveBeat - January 28th, 2019
- Is The Ketogenic Diet Safe for People with Diabetes? - Dr ... - December 20th, 2018
- Is the Keto Diet Safe? 4 Potential Dangers to Be Aware Of ... - December 19th, 2018
- Is the Keto Diet Really Safe? - thedailymeal.com - December 19th, 2018
- The Vegan Diet Done Safely - Parsley Health - November 18th, 2018
- Ketogenic diet: Is the ultimate low-carb diet good for you ... - October 31st, 2018
- Keto Diet Beginners Guide: Understanding the Ketogenic Diet - October 2nd, 2018
- Is the Keto diet Safe? 10 Myth-Busting Arguments for the ... - August 8th, 2018
- Diet - Safety Talk Ideas - August 6th, 2018
- The Carnivore Diet: Can Eating Only Meat Supercharge Your ... - August 1st, 2018
- Diet and Weight Loss Safety Tips (UPDATE: Jul 2018) | 2 ... - July 26th, 2018
- What Is the Keto Diet, and Is It Safe? - May 24th, 2018
- How to Safely and Effectively Come Off the Keto Diet ... - May 7th, 2018
- Care Guide: Diet - April 2nd, 2018
- Eat Wheat: A Scientific and Clinically-Proven Approach to ... - March 16th, 2018
- Can Probiotics Make It Safely To Your Intestines? - February 19th, 2018
- How to safely and healthily use supplements in your diet ... - February 17th, 2018
- Liquid Diet: Facts About Plans and Effectiveness - February 17th, 2018
- 11 Low Carb Vegetables That You Can Safely Eat on the ... - February 7th, 2018
- Is the Ketogenic Diet Safe for Everyone? - Diagnosis:Diet - January 20th, 2018
- Best Weight Loss Pills For Women Reviewed - Top 8 Best ... - December 25th, 2017
- Safe Diets and Healthful Weight Loss - healthline.com - November 6th, 2017
- Can I diet while breastfeeding? KellyMom.com - October 15th, 2017
- How to Use Diet Pills Safely: 12 Steps (with Pictures ... - October 13th, 2017
- How to Lose Weight Quickly and Safely (for Teen Girls) - October 13th, 2017
- Chinese red viagra sildenafil citrate - Viagra and red bull safe - Red ant viagra review - Black Hills Today - September 6th, 2017
- The What IF Plan: all you need to know about the new DNA weight loss programme - Evening Standard - September 6th, 2017
- Coca-Cola Offering $1 Million for Natural Sugar Substitute - Newsmax - September 6th, 2017
- 'Global event' in Ames this fall to focus on digital literacy - Radio Iowa - September 6th, 2017
- All the Apps and Websites You Need When You Have a Kid With Food Allergies - Lifehacker Australia - September 6th, 2017
- Cheap female viagra pills - Name of female viagra tablet - Twin Cities Arts Reader - September 4th, 2017
- 'Diet guidelines biased against poor nations' - The News International - September 4th, 2017
- World-renowned Alzheimer's expert takes state fair stage - KARE - September 4th, 2017
- 10 new nutrients you should be eating right away - DailyO - September 4th, 2017
- Why West's low-fat diet advice could be deadly for Asia's poor, because they'll likely eat even more carbs - South China Morning Post - September 2nd, 2017
- Battling the deerfly - Stowe Today - September 2nd, 2017
- Levitra professional mail order - Levitra professional pills - Laughlin Entertainer - September 2nd, 2017
- Don't talk about diets in front of your daughters, deputy head at top London school warns parents - Evening Standard - September 1st, 2017
- Diet guidelines biased against poor nations: study - Capital FM Kenya (press release) (blog) - September 1st, 2017
- Sponsor spotlight: Harbor Square Athletic Club Healthy Lifestyle Tip good protein sources - My Edmonds News - September 1st, 2017
- Viagra soft tabs uk buy - Viagra soft tab generic - Forward Florida - September 1st, 2017
- The Most Weight You Can Safely Lose In A Month By Only ... - August 30th, 2017
- Diet guidelines 'biased against poor nations' - New Vision - August 30th, 2017
- Nutrition: Tips to a healthful State Fair - Duluth News Tribune - August 30th, 2017
- How does a high-salt diet affect your body? - Reports Healthcare - August 30th, 2017
- Healthcare Startup Claims It Can Defeat Diabetes With Nutrition Alone - Futurism - August 30th, 2017
- Buy kamagra soft usa - Forward Florida - August 30th, 2017
- Diet guidelines biased against poor nations: study - Geo News, Pakistan - August 29th, 2017
- Men who get fit in middle age can halve their risk of strokes - Telegraph.co.uk - August 29th, 2017
- Can you really lose your belly fat with just 15 minutes of HIIT a day? Yes. - Metro - August 29th, 2017
- Viagra capsule in hindi - Viagra capsules price in india - Laughlin Entertainer - August 27th, 2017
- Extension Connection: Petscaping Your Yard - Canton Daily Ledger - August 27th, 2017
- Ketogenic diet loved for fast results, but does it work? - Gears Of Biz - August 27th, 2017
- The case for complete streets - Prince Rupert Northern View - August 27th, 2017