While demand for immune support products increased on the human supplement side in 2020 for obvious reasons, perhaps surprisingly, similar spikes in demand for pet supplements were also seen.
Considering that, due to the increase in precaution to go out and avoid contagion of Covid-19 and quarantines, the number of visits to veterinarians was reduced. However, this was not a deterrent to dog owners becoming increasingly concerned about the nutrition and well-being of their pets. And, with the boom in online shopping during lockdown, their owners conducted more searches on the Internet for a key emerging ingredient in pet food: probiotics.
According to the presentation by Lumina Intelligence, a British firm specialized in information on the food, beverage and nutrition market, at the Probiota Digital Summit held earlier this year, the lockdown had two effects on consumers when they moved to the shopping environment online: On one hand, users of probiotics for dogs who generally obtain them from their veterinarians seemed to try to obtain their probiotics online. On the other hand, as people spent more time with their pets during isolation, their well-being and bowel movements problems became paramount.
In this presentation they highlight how the increase in searches for probiotics was linked to the interest of the owners in improving the health and well-being of the dog.
Specifically, Lumina says, searches for "probiotics for dogs with diarrhea" increased between March and September 2020, in both English and Spanish.
"The unpleasantness of being locked up with a dog with diarrhea means that consumers quickly turn to the online probiotic space, in search of a remedy and COVID has greatly accelerated this trend", highlights the firm.Lumina Intelligence
Ewa Hudson, Lumina's Chief Knowledge Officer, added that searches for probiotics in spanish worldwide averaged 4,400 per month: Mexico led searches with 29.1%, followed by Colombia with 14.5% and Chile with 13.8%, while in other Latin American countries they collectively reached 15.3%.
The magazine All Extruded, a british magazine with international information specialized in products for pet food, complements this data by indicating that in Spain these searches increased by 22.5% and that in the United States these searches increased by 4, 8% in the spanish language.
How will pet food producers respond to more searches for probiotics?
It is not yet clear how producers will join the wave of probiotics in their pet food formulas, especially for non-premium formulations. However, one thing is for sure: Pet owners gained a deeper understanding of their nutritional requirements during confinement, a factor that is likely to inform and shape upcoming trends in pet food demand.
As an alternative, Fortcell Feed® Pets is a specific formulation with probiotics, prebiotics and essential oils that, due to its patented coating technology, it can withstand extreme pH and temperature conditions, making it the ideal ingredient to include in compound animal feed and snacks for dogs and cats in their different stages of development, as there are proven results of recovery in the gastrointestinal tract and stabilization of the microbiome even after being subjected to pelletizing, extrusion and/or baking processes.
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