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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Consumer Wellness Concerns Drive Grocery Sales

Weight management concerns are top of the mind for a substantial portion of today's grocery-aisle cart-pushers -- consumers, that is. Weight control, weight loss, and obesity are topics that rank among the most urgent health-related drivers: as reported in Packaged Facts’ report, "Weight Management Trends in the U.S.", two out of five adults, representing 88 million consumers, are currently watching their diet to either lose or avoid gaining weight.

Weight concerns play out variously across the food and beverage aisles, in terms of the foods we seek out and those we try to avoid.

Wegmans supermarkets, for example, introduced its Greek yogurt in late 2011 following a two-year development period that included consumer input. The company launched six varieties under its Food You Feel Good About label, leveraging the high protein and low carbohydrate content of the yogurt, so that it would appeal to both health and weight conscious consumers. Wegmans’ product scored additional points for being free of artificial sweeteners, colors, flavors, preservatives or thickeners.

Consumers Demand Healthy Items 

Somewhat paradoxically, although many shoppers officially frown on highly processed or “artificial” foods, consumers continue to respond positively to the development and engineering of food and beverage products that are either explicitly designed to address specific health concerns and nutritional trends, or that amp up the intake of marquee nutrients that are widely associated with specific health benefits.

According to Packaged Facts survey data, nearly half of grocery shoppers like the idea of food and beverage products that are formulated to address specific health conditions or concerns, and two out of five like to use nutritionally enhanced food and beverage products.

In part to compete with the rising tide of store-brand products, “name” brands are increasingly innovating in the area of health and wellness. Many recently introduced national or specialty brand food and beverage products feature the addition of ingredients such as antioxidants, calcium, protein, or omega-3 to deliver more nutritional value—and to capture more consumer dollars.

More generally, processed food manufacturers and foodservice operators alike are focusing on offerings that deliver nutritional benefits consistent with the recommendations of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010. This focus notably includes a priority on children’s nutrition and obesity concerns.

Concern Over Children's Nutrition is  Paramount

In the National Restaurant Association (NRA) What’s Hot 2013 Chef Survey, four of the Top 20 trends relate specifically to children as diners:

  • Kids’ meals (#3 out of 20)
  • Children’s nutrition (#5)
  • Whole grain items in kids’ meals (#10)
  • Fruit/vegetable children’s side items (#15).

For grocery store shoppers, low-sugar, low-fat, and low-salt products continue to claim their place in the shopping cart.

According to the 2012 International Food Information Council (IFIC) Foundation Food & Health survey, for example, 78% of consumers are cutting calories by drinking water or low- and no-calorie beverages. In categories such as fruit juices and drinks, where commodity input costs have risen sharply in recent months, line extensions offering health benefits such as reduced calories from sugar are a key way to capture more sales from consumers, as noted in a Standard & Poor’s Current Environment Report (November 15, 2012).

At the same time, allergies and other food restrictions are increasingly in the spotlight—or rather in its glare—when it comes to ingredients that shoppers are seeking to avoid. Over a fourth of food shoppers agree that food restrictions, food avoidances or food allergies play an important role in what their households eat, according to Packaged Facts survey data. Gluten-free has been the most prominent trend here, with Packaged Facts estimating a compound annual growth rate of 28% over the 2008-2012 period for the gluten-free foods market in the United States.

Retailers & Producers Respond With Action

Food retailers are also thinking outside of the box (or package) altogether in addressing the specific wellness concerns of their customer base. Through its pharmacies, for example, Winn Dixie is offering free cholesterol and glucose screenings to Winn-Dixie Reward Card holders, as well as partnering with OneTouch, a manufacturer of blood sugar meters for diabetes management. This initiative is more than a general goodwill gesture: according to Simmons data, adult Winn-Dixie shoppers are half again (index of 149) more likely than U.S. adults on average to suffer from type 1 or type 2 diabetes.

It is also essential to note that, particularly in the wake of the Great Recession, consumer perceptions about wellness are undergoing a sea change, moving beyond purely personal nutrition, healthcare, and fitness goals and concerns to a more thoughtful consideration of the self in relation to the community, the environment, and the broader world. As such, local, organic, natural and sustainable remain key attributes and badges of honor within the broader context of health trends.

Wellness and sustainability concerns will continue as hot topics across farms and food factories, grocery store aisles, and grocery shopping lists both because food and beverage manufacturers seek the higher margins that these value-added products can command, and because our persistently high obesity and chronic illness rates, and the overwhelming healthcare costs these trigger, demand it.

-- David Sprinkle

Friday, April 26, 2013

Puppy Love Helps Nation Heal After Tragedies

In the aftermath earlier this month of the Boston Marathon bombings and a huge factory explosion in Texas that left a nation dazed and confused, some Americans are finding solace in the embrace of helping paws.

ABC News reported on this phenomenon, dubbing it "Puppy Love Healing" in reference to a group of specially trained-golden retrievers provided to people in the communities of Boston, Massachusetts following the April 15 bombings during the Boston Marathon, to offer "cuddle comfort" for those in need (see the video here). The popularity of the "Puppy Love Healing" campaign is so great that some of the dogs associated with it even have their own Twitter accounts.

Packaged Facts' March 2012 Pet Owner Survey reveals that 84 percent of respondents agree that their pets have a positive impact on their emotional health, while 77 percent agree their pets positively impact their physical health. The fact that comfort dogs are such a visible part of the healing process following one of the most sinister assaults on U.S. soil since 9/11 speaks to how widely embraced the idea of pet therapy has become.

Pet industry experts--including those at Packaged Facts--have championed the game-changing long-term impact of pet therapy for several years, though 2009 marked a noticeable uptick in optimism surrounding the implications of the trend.

The basis for this optimism was the belief that the correlation between pet ownership and enhanced human health would continue to receive scientific support through clinical trials and become more publicly known, which would thus create a boon for the retail pet industry overall. 

Advances in the social acceptance of modern-day principles of pet therapy can partly be linked to the WALTHAM Centre for Pet Nutrition committing $2 million to a four-year research program in a joint effort with the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) for Human-Animal Interaction (HAI) in August 2009.

By early 2011, the pet industry took another giant step forward when American Pet Products Association (APPA) President Bob Vetere announced the formation of the Human Animal Bond Research Initiative Foundation (HABRI), which has ties with APPA, Petco, and Pfizer Animal Health.

Even Average Janes and Joes not in league with either big corporations or acronym employing associations have taken up the cause of gaining wider acceptance for pet thearpy. A self-described "edgy, twenty-something New Yorker", Bruce Goldstein published a boy-meets-dog memoir entitled Puppy Chow Is Better Than Prozac: The True Story of a Man and the Dog Who Saved His Life, in March 2008.

Goldstein's candidness about his personal struggles and the role his pet played in helping him triumph in life resonated with many Americans. It will be interesting to see what testimonial books--and blogs--discussing how "Puppy Love Healing" brought them through the storm to arise from the ashes of the recent major disasters in Boston and in West, Texas.

-- Daniel Granderson

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Veterinarians Are Key to Pet Medications Market

One of the more peculiar casualties of the Internet age has been the changing role of veterinarians when it comes to the sale of certain pet medication.  For instance, during much of the 20th Century, veterinarians did very well selling “ethical” (exclusive to the veterinary channel, though not prescription) brands of flea/tick spot-ons such as Frontline and Advantage.

However, during the past decade, a large chunk of those sales have shifted online with the rise of websites like PetMed Express (1800PetMeds). Despite the commitments of manufacturers, sales of key ethical brands have also migrated inexorably into brick-and-mortar or wholesale pet business channels. In some cases, this has left a bad taste in the mouths of veterinarians, who feel betrayed when brands they helped put on the map “defect”  to pet specialty and mass market retailers.

Unfortunately for veterinarians, they hold little sway to counter their waning influence. Some experts, including the analysts at  Packaged Facts, believe that as far as pet meds brands crossing over from veterinary to retail goes, the sales opportunities beyond the veterinary channel will easily outweigh the negative reactions from displeased veterinarians.

The primary caveat of this sea change is that veterinarians may be a bit harder to recruit as promoters and retailers of ethical pet medications.

Through it all, there exist other promising industry segments where veterinarians remain influential in the pet care landscape. In truth, veterinarians’ health expertise and ability to recommend products to consumers are a huge plus yet to be exploited to full advantage across much of the pet products market. Although the pet product retailing picture varies from one veterinary office to the next, for the most part the selection is limited to a few high-grade foods and treats and a small selection of nonfood products displayed in the waiting room. And while most veterinarians carry specialized diets, nutritional (or “holistic”) therapeutic food is still a relatively new concept.

The therapeutic food segment appears capable of sustaining significant growth if traditional veterinarians become more enthusiastic about recommending specialized foods, as is the case with holistic veterinarians. Further underscoring the growing demand and need for medical diets both the American Animal Hospital Association and the World Small Animal Veterinary Association in 2011 released guidelines for the nutritional assessment of pets as part of routine physical examinations.The guidelines were created to emphasize the essential role nutrition plays in promoting optimal pet health and to help vets effectively use their expertise in evaluating a patient's nutritional status.

Making the most of the AAHA guidelines to help drive therapeutic pet food sales, Hill’s created a website called Directed at veterinarians, the website emphasizes the AAHA recommendation of nutrition as “the 5th Vital Assessment,” along with temperature, cardio function, respiratory health, and pain. Also boding well for therapeutic foods, one of the leading U.S. pet insurance providers, Trupanion, announced that its pet insurance policies would begin covering the foods on a limited basis.

Undoubtedly, the therapeutic pet food market will be one worth watching throughout the remainder of 2013 and in the years to come.

-- Daniel Granderson

Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Power of Prune Juice

When defined in terms of overall dollar sales and volume consumption, the market for fruit juices and juice drinks has remained remarkably stable for years.  Packaged Facts estimates that between 2007 and 2012 dollar sales of fruit and vegetable juices and juice drinks barely budged and that the volume of juices and juice drinks consumed by households hardly kept up with population growth.

Yet, underneath its apparently placid surface, the market for packaged juices and drinks has been roiled by undercurrents of constant, unpredictable change.  Traditional consumption patterns are rapidly changing as consumers continue to turn away from classic products such as frozen orange juice. 

As they reject the traditional, consumers are embracing new juices and juice drinks with wildly innovative forms and flavors.  Many of the products achieving the highest growth rates are those riding the wave of trends and fads driven by juice bars and smoothie chains that have had a seemingly overnight impact on the tastes of health-obsessed juice consumers. 

As a result, the market for packaged fruit and vegetable juices has been upended.  No longer do consumers need to frequent juice bars or natural and specialty gourmet retail channels to find novel blends and flavors.  They only need to cruise the aisles and perimeter of their nearest supermarket to find a wide range of cutting-edge products such as exotic blends of fruit juices, unexpected combinations of fruit and vegetable juices, smoothies, coconut water, aloe vera juice, and juices made from mysterious, antioxidant-rich “superfruits.”

Yet, consumers still make room in their refrigerators and pantries for tried-and-true juices and juice drinks.  As Packaged Facts’ April 2013 report on Fruit and Vegetable Juices: U.S. Market Trends  points out, despite the rush to create new and exciting flavors and textures for juices and juice drinks, many of the most old-fashioned flavors and products still have a hold on American consumers.  Apple is a juice flavor used most by 65 million households, and orange juice still reigns as king of the mass market, with $2.6 billion in sales for the 52 weeks ending January 27, 2013.  Juices and juice drinks with cranberry flavors racked up $851 million in dollar sales, while apple juice and apple cider registered dollar sales of $748 million during the period. 

As might be expected, when it comes to traditional juice flavors there are significant differences between the preferences of younger and older consumers.  For example, consumers 55 years old and over have a higher likelihood of preferring cranberry juice and cranberry juice blends, while consumers under the age of 35 are more likely to favor tropical, pineapple, lemonade, lemon/lime, grape, fruit punch and cherry flavors.

There is just one fruit juice flavor with the power to cross generational boundaries.  Younger Millennials (those in the 18- to 24-year-old age group) are about as likely as those in the 65+ age group to say that prune is a juice flavor they use most. 

The Top 10 FAQs About Profound

Profound, from, is one of the largest and most trusted corporate market intelligence providers on the web. Subscription to the service includes access to a wide variety of market research reports from multiple verticals and the ability to slice and dice reports as needed. Here are the top 10 frequently asked questions about Profound.

1. What categories do Profound research reports cover?

Subscription to the service gives clients access to a constantly updated collection of more than 725,000 leading-edge market research reports from 203 of the top publishers in the world. Reports span 700 industry segments, from Life Sciences, to Energy, to the Food & Beverage industries. Companies from all over the world come to Profound to gain expert insight on market dynamics in key growth industries, thereby sharpening their competitive edge.

2. What is the Profound advantage?

Profound’s most unique characteristic is its buy-by-the-slice functionality, which gives subscribers the option to purchase either full-length reports or specific sections – charts, graphs, or chapters – at a fraction of the cost of a full report.

The service utlizes a state-of-the-art search engine, which ensures a straightforward search process and superior accuracy.

Another of Profound’s far-reaching benefits is its exceptional customer service. In-house support staff are on hand to complement the optimized search process and help customers along the way, guaranteeing a fast, pleasant, and hassle-free user experience.

3. Is Profound the right solution for my company?

Yes - professionals across numerous verticals can expect to find the research they are specifically looking for. With a collection that exceeds 725,000 research reports and spans 700 industry segments - ranging from Life Sciences and Heavy Industry to Consumer Goods and Technology - Profound is guaranteed to suit the specific needs of a wide variety of companies. Reports cover both major and niche sectors, including global, regional and country specific markets.

4. What are the financial benefits of Profound?

Profound tailors its products to its customers’ specific needs and budgets. It is the only market intelligence provider that enables subscribers to purchase specific sections of a report, be it a graph, a chart, a table, or even a specific chapter. This unique option to buy quality research “a la carte” is a cost-effective alternative to purchasing full-length reports, as you can purchase nuggets of information and analysis at the fraction of the cost of a full report.

5. What are the terms of a subscription to Profound?

Profound operates on a commitment basis. A subscription to Profound provides unlimited access to the most comprehensive database of market research reports purchasable either in full-length or “a la carte”, depending on each client’s specific needs. It offers flexible payment options for all budgets and circumstances, and the support staff are here to assess each customer’s specific needs to help them find the best payment option for them.

6. Is the service easy to navigate?

Profound’s superior search tool, in combination with high-quality search assistance, ensures a fast, simple, and highly effective search process.

Profound’s sophisticated search engine is designed to suit both desktop users and expert searchers, catering to customers’ varying degrees of experience. Its highly-effective search technology enables users to find targeted search results in no time and hassle-free.

Yet Profound also understands that there can be situations in which clients might appreciate assistance along the way.

7. What if I have specific questions regarding the data?

Profound works as the direct link between customers and publishers. If questions arise regarding the methods used to retrieve data or the clarity of a specific report, Profound ensures effective communication between the clients and the publishers in order to avoid any confusion or ambiguity.

8. Who within my business could use Profound?

Each and every part of a business would benefit from using Profound. Making it possible for subscribers to give specific levels of access to all their users, the service will meet any requirement.

9. Does Profound help me stay in the know?

Profound’s extensive collection is constantly updated with new market research. In order to help its clients stay ahead of their competition, Profound uses a system of “alerts” whereby users receive notifications each time a new report is made available in their field. It also sends its customers quarterly updates to ensure they are aware of new publishers coming into Profound.

10. Is Profound a good investment for me?

Profound allows companies from all over the world to stay ahead of their competition. Whether they’re looking for new product trends or in-depth analyses of specific markets, professionals across disciplines are guaranteed to expand their knowledge with cutting edge reports from leading research experts. Gaining a wider and wiser outlook regarding market dynamics in key growth industries undeniably gives companies a leg up in the market.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Which Research Report: Primary or Secondary?

My name is Rob Kaminsky. As a Research Specialist at, I spend my days (and nights) helping clients find the best market research reports for their business needs. Clients frequently find multiple reports that seem relevant to their current needs, but are often uncertain which would be the best fit. Choosing the right reports often comes down to the appropriate combination of primary research and secondary research that answers questions they want answered.

For example, a large financial institution investing in a medical device company and a medical device company looking to expand their market may be looking at the same field, but what they need is entirely different.

A large factor in determining the appropriate report is the way in which the information is gathered. An analyst writing a report will always use a mixture of primary and secondary research to provide accurate information and conclusions, so the issue is really how much of each would be better.

  • Primary research is information gathered through surveys, interviews and other direct contact with industry experts and participants. So, if the analyst has contacted the CEO of several top medical device manufacturers to get their opinion on where the market for their products is heading, that would be primary research.

  • Secondary research is information gathered from previously published information. This includes analyzing company reports, searching trade association documents and industry journal articles. So, looking at the top medical device financial filings would be an example of secondary research.

To help my clients determine what type of research reports would provide the best results, I address two main issues: the type of questions they are trying to answer and the relationship they have with the industry they are investigating. The questions will be either qualitative or quantitative, and the client will either be an industry outsider or and industry insider.

  • Qualitative questions like: Why is the industry moving in a certain direction? or How is this going to take place? are most often answered through primary research. Having someone gathering up to the minute information from key experts within an industry is a very effective way to get accurate feedback on trends and developments.

  • Quantitative questions like: How large is the market? or How much has this market segment grown compared to other segments? are more numbers oriented and are usually best answered through secondary research. Published numbers from an industry are often the most concrete data that can be used to estimate the size and projected growth of a market.

The final step I take to help my clients find the right report is figuring out whether they are an Industry Outside or Insider.

  • Industry Outsiders are clients who are trying to gain information on industries or markets they have done little or no business in. The financial company mentioned earlier is likely to be an industry outsider. For outsiders, the insights and conclusions provided by primary research will often be the key to success.

  • Industry insiders are organizations with a great deal of prior experience in an industry such as the medical device manufacturer. Secondary research can be a better focus for this type of client since they already know the inner workings of the industry. They often need numbers much more than analysis.

In the end, no matter what information is needed, both primary and secondary research will have value and almost every report is a mix of the two. So, when helping my clients, my goal is to provide a report recommendation that will strike the right balance and allow them to make the most effective business decisions.

If you want to learn more about Market Research Reports and specifically how they can help you in your business, check back for more blogs down the road.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Horsegate, Pink Slime, Farmers Markets and the Locavore Movement

Horsegate is the name that has been given to the scandal currently rocking the global meat industry, in which horsemeat has been mixed in with beef in everything from prepared frozen meat dishes to packaged ground meat to the Swedish meatballs served up in IKEA furniture stores. Horsemeat is not unhealthy and is eaten in many countries including Italy, France, and Belgium. But horsemeat intended for human consumption is only supposed to come from animals that have not been given certain chemicals which can be harmful to human health, especially the types of drugs used to euthanize horses.  But even if the horsemeat found so far in the foods in question came from horses that were drug free, there is still plenty of scandal simply on the basis of the mislabeling.

To date no horsemeat has turned up in the U.S. meat supply.  But we did have our own meat scandal in 2012 when the news media reported on the widespread use of lean finely textured beef (LFTB) as a filler in ground beef. LFTB had been approved by the Department of Agriculture a decade ago despite the use of ammonia to process the ingredient. While there are health organizations that disagree with the USDA as to the safety of that process, the real problem was the nickname given by meat inspectors to this legal ingredient: pink slime.  But as the news reports came out, that description alone was enough to turn off the public, leading many foodservice companies and retailers to drop the use of any ground beef that contained the filler and driving at least one LFTB manufacturer into bankruptcy.

So what do these scandals have to do with farmers markets and the locavore movement? Survey after survey indicates that consumers are increasingly concerned about the safety of the foods they eat, including meat and poultry. As reported in Meat and Poultry Trends in the U.S., Packaged Facts’ 2013 Consumer Survey found that nearly 60 percent of consumers said that food safety/contamination is a major concern when they buy fresh meat, poultry, or seafood. And while many producers of meat and poultry are launching lines that stress their products were raised naturally, without the use of antibiotics or other chemicals, as well as under humane conditions, nearly half of the Packaged Facts Survey respondents indicated they simply don't trust a lot of the 'natural' labeling.

These concerns have been a contributor to the growth of the locavore movement that has consumers seeking out foods and other products that come from local producers. There is no firm definition of what local means in this context, although some sources place a 100-mile limit to it. While the movement has been motivated by environmental issues, food safety has also become a major motivator in buying locally—especially at a farmers market where the farmer or rancher is standing across a table from you, able to answer your questions about how the meat or poultry you are purchasing was raised and perhaps even inviting you to come see for yourself. We have to think that knowing the producer as a neighbor, being able to meet him or her face-to-face and look them in the eye has a value that transcends an advertising claim on a package label. 

Some locally produced foods can be found in independent groceries and even some supermarkets are promoting their locally grown sections. But farmers markets are the mainstay of the locavore movement. According to the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service, the number of farmers markets in the U.S. has more than doubled over the past decade, from 3,137 in 2002 to 7,864 in 2012. The increase from 2011 to 2012 alone was nearly 10 percent.

The Centers for Disease Control has made it clear that foodborne illnesses have dropped dramatically in recent years thanks to the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act and the food industry’s positive response to the act. Nevertheless there is a mood upon large swathes of the American people to distrust large institutions, whether the government, banks, or corporations. It is not hard to imagine that another food safety scandal, even though isolated from the overall quality of our food supply, will serve to drive the further expansion of the locavore movement and the growth of farmers markets.

From Acting Student to Research Ace: Jeff Miller

Jeff Miller, a Senior Research Specialist at, hails from a quintessential "Small-town America" location, Columbus, Ohio.

He now lives in New York -- another classic American city although clearly miles apart from the small-town feel of his origins.

Still, in his work helping clients locate precisely the best research for their needs, Jeff draws on his traditionalist roots. They are enhanced by experience that spans many years and includes higher education with a decidedly sophisticated and intuitive focus: Acting!

We asked Jeff to share more about himself.

Q: What is your hometown?

A: I'm originally from Columbus, Ohio.

Q: How many siblings do you have and where do you stack up among them (youngest, middle, oldest child)?

A: I'm an only child.

Q: What did your parents do for work?

My Mother was a stay-at-home Mom, my father worked in the Superabrasives division of General Electric.

Q: What college(s) did you attend and what was your major? A: I studied acting at the Lee Strasberg Institute before joining the American Theater of Actors as both an actor and director. Great memories!

Q: What is your favorite cultural activity?

A: I enjoy travelling to new cities large and small and discovering new food, art and music.

Q: What is your favorite city to visit? (domestic or international)

A: That's a hard one! Domestically, I'd have to say my new favorite city is New Orleans. Good music. Good food. Good people. Internationally, it is definitely Paris. Or anywhere in Italy!

Q: How did you make that first step on the ‘career ladder?”

A: Many moons ago I worked part-time selling Find SVP's various market research offerings -- consultancy, publishing, etc.. It was during this time that I learned something about myself: I enjoy discussing clients' projects and crafting solutions that help them make important business decisions.

Q: In your work at MRDC over the years, please share an anecdote or two of your interacting with clients that you feel best demonstrates your creativity and dedication.

A: Here is an example: I had a pet products client who was tasked by their board of directors with finding data that was unavailable in a syndicated market research report.

I worked closely with the client to prioritize their requirements, explore their options, and, using the client's feedback, crafted a customized research solution that was both cost-effective and flexible enough that we could shift resources mid-project if need be.

The client was very happy with the results and used their new proprietary data in closing the largest deal of their existence - partnering with a competitor for a hefty profit.

Q: Can you give an example of an instance where you helped a client who had a request that was challenging?

A: My goal in representing over 750 publishers is to be as unbiased as possible in identifying or qualifying the most relevant reports available. That being said, many of my clients appreciate our very own Packaged Facts reports for not only their excellent coverage, but their flexibility with post-sales support.

I recently had a client who purchased a report, loved much of the content, but required a couple more figures to complete their project. I worked with both the client and the publisher in crafting a supplemental chart that included a few data points that assisted the client in completing their project. This convinced the client that Packaged Facts was a publisher with integrity -- and the next month they purchased a subscription.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Top 10 Pet Industry Trends in 2013

The Pet Industry contracted slightly in the great recession, but is poised to experience several points of growth this year, according to David Lummis, a leading analyst at PackagedFacts.

Here are some important sector trends for pet industry manufacturers, retailers and marketers to watch for in 2013:

1) Pet owners will spend less overall than in pre-recession years but more on organic food and other premium products.

2) Sales of ‘natural,’ or organic pet products are expected to increase; in 2011, sales of ‘super-premium’ dog food increased by 5.2 percent over 2010.

3) Sales of dog and cat treats will continue to climb, based on recent data: in 2010-2011, sales of treats at natural supermarkets increased by 12 percent. (SPINS, Inc.)

4) Premium-priced refrigerated pet food will continue growing in market share: During 2011, unit sales of frozen/refrigerated dog food rose 11 percent, with the comparable figure on the cat side at 44 percent. (SymphonyIRI.)

5) Sales of pet medications are expected to climb during the next five years, with annual percentage gains anticipated to increase from 7% in 2012 to 10% in 2015.

6) The ‘humanization’ of pets will continue to gain popularity among pet owners, with growing numbers of non-pet food manufacturers seeing increased sales in ‘high-style’ products such as dog and cat strollers, car seats, ‘cribs,’ and safety gates.

7) Pet owners are getting younger: in 2011, The 18-24 age group saw the largest increase growing by more than 14 percentage points, followed by the 25-34 age group, which grew by 6 percentage points.

8) Fewer households will own more than one pet: multiple-pet households have declined since 2006, falling from 38% of households to 34% in 2011.

9) More people are owning pets: From 2009 to 2011, the overall rate of pet ownership increased from 53.6 percent of U.S.households to 55.9 percent.

10) Generation Xers, those in the age range of 30-44, are expected to continue outpacing Baby Boomers and Seniors in pet ownership. In 2011, 30 million Gen Xers were pet owners, 5 million more than their Boomer elders.
To get more hot pet industry data, click below to download our latest slideshare.

Amy Alexander
Writer/Sr. Content Manager

Monday, April 1, 2013

Greek Yogurt Craze Ups the Advertising Ante

For years, the yogurt industry has made a splash with its advertising. 

In the 1970s, Dannon ran its famous “In Soviet Georgia” commercials, sometimes credited with revolutionizing yogurt sales in the U.S.  In the commercials, an announcer would explain some variation of the following:  “In Soviet Georgia, there are two curious things about the people.  A large part of their diet is yogurt, and a large number of them live past 100.”  (One example from the campaign can be viewed here:

Next came Yoplait’s introduction into the United States in the late 1970s, calling itself The Yogurt of France. 

The two brands have fought for yogurt supremacy in the U.S. – and worldwide – ever since.

And without much of a challenge from anyone else.

Until late 2007. 

That was when an upstart Greek yogurt brand Chobani first began appearing in stores.  At that time, Greek yogurt barely had a presence in the market.

Fast forward to the evening of February 5, 2012.  With a Greek yogurt craze in full swing in the U.S., Dannon decided that it had better signal its reaction on the biggest stage possible:  The Super Bowl telecast.  It launched “The Tease,” a commercial starring John Stamos that is said to be the first yogurt commercial to air during the Super Bowl telecast.

And for the last year, while the market for Greek yogurt has continued to grow, reaching 35% of the overall yogurt market by the end of 2012, a period of frantic competition for share of voice and share of wallet has ensued.

Packaged Facts new report The Yogurt Market and Yogurt Innovation: Greek Yogurt and Beyond examines this and other trends in the U.S. and global yogurt markets.

--George Puro