business news in context, analysis with attitude

The Associated Press reports that “U.S. pet owners are increasingly feeding fresh food to their dogs and cats. Some order pre-proportioned meals of meat and vegetables or frozen raw meat online. Others find them in refrigerators at big retailers like Walmart … younger buyers are fueling the trend, choosing pet foods they consider safer and more natural, says consulting firm Mintel.”

According to the story, “U.S. sales of fresh pet food in groceries and pet stores jumped 70 percent to more than $546 million between 2015 and 2018, according to Nielsen, a data company. That doesn't include online sales or people making their own fresh pet food. It's still just a fraction of the $25 billion U.S. pet food market.”

However, there is a big “but.”

The AP also points out that “some veterinarians question the trend. They say established pet food companies … are backed by decades of research, while the verdict is still out on fresh food.”

And, “the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says raw pet food has a high risk of bacterial contamination. The agency is also investigating a link between grain-free diets that contain peas, lentils and potatoes and elevated levels of heart disease in dogs.”
KC's View: