Nestlé India aims to improve pet food and child nutrition

Nestle India stepped up its premiumization efforts with the acquisition of Purina PetCare India’s pet food business and the launch of its global premium toddler nutrition brand, Gerber. According to Nestlé, both categories have a large market with significant growth potential. The pet food market, for example, is worth around Rs 4,000 crore and growing at a rate of 25%, making it one of the fastest growing categories. The toddler nutrition market is worth Rs 3,500 crore and growing.

“Premiumization is one of our growth drivers, and the premium pet food and toddler nutrition business is moving in that direction,” said Suresh Narayanan, President and CEO of Nestlé. India, to analysts on an earnings conference call. For example, if the pegged price of Maggi noodles is Rs 100 per kilogram, the average pet food is around ‘140 and Gerber’s is Rs 700. ‘That’s the kind of premiumisation we’re talking about with these brands, which is significant,’ Narayanan said.

While Purina was introduced in India in 2018, Nestlé India steered clear of it as Nestlé built the business through a specialized pet distribution network, and none of Nestlé India’s products being sold through this channel, the Indian branch stayed away and let the parent invest in the business to get it started. Over the past four years, Purina’s business has been driven by a specialized distribution network in 46 cities with 50 distributors and 185 suppliers.

However, Narayanan said the market has evolved since then. “With the adoption of pets on the rise following the pandemic, there are approximately 30 million pets in India and growing at an annual rate of 11% across all classes of cities, which means that three million pets are added each year”. Since dogs are the most popular pet in India, dry dog ​​food accounts for 75% of the market, making it the largest segment. “Interestingly, wet cat food is also a strong opportunity growing at a rate of 35%,” he said.

Sales growth accelerated, with an increase of 68% to 31.2 crore in 2021 and a 51% increase to Rs 46.3 crore in the first six months of 2022. In 2018, the company has achieved sales of Rs 11.5 crore. The channel has shifted from a focus on niche channels to omnichannel, with e-commerce now accounting for around 14% of sales.