Organic Pet Food Poised for Expansion, says Packaged Facts

Press Release
Aug 4, 2017
Rockville (MD), August 4, 2017 - Ten years ago, organic pet foods appeared to be ready to take the pet world by storm. Organic was just beginning its meteoric rise in mainstream human food categories, and with the simultaneous entry of natural pet foods into mainstream pet channels, the time looked ripe for organic options to establish a greater presence in the pet food market. However, despite the optimism expressed by the Organic Trade Association (OTA)—among others—organic pet food has yet to hit its stride. That is about to change, according to Natural, Organic, and Eco-Friendly Pet Products in the U.S., 6th Edition, a report by market research firm Packaged Facts.

In the report, Packaged Facts identifies a few main reasons why organic pet food has yet to achieve significant market penetration:

  • Supply issues: The recent growth in popularity of organic foods in human markets means that suppliers are already stretched thin. Add to this the issue that many ingredients in pet foods, such as fish and other more novel proteins, are not readily available in organic form, and simply finding enough organic ingredients can be problematic for pet food makers seeking entry into the organic segment.

  • High prices: As anyone who has purchased human organic food products knows, organic products cost more. Higher quality ingredients mean higher prices, and pet food companies may be gun-shy about marketing what could amount to a super-superpremium product price-wise.

  • Organic regulations complicate: With no firm federal mandate dictating what constitutes an organic pet food, pet food marketers seeking to use the organic label must adhere to human organic food standards. Rather than face regulatory scrutiny, pet food marketers may instead decide that it’s easier to label a product “natural” and call it a day.

As mentioned, there are signs, however, that at least some of the challenges facing organic pet food may soon be remedied. From the regulation standpoint, there are signs that organic pet food standards are moving through the approval process in the National Organic Program. Additionally, demand from the human side of the market has been prompting more interest in organic agriculture and manufacturing practices, possibly increasing the supply of organic products.

Packaged Facts believes that as the obstacles to organic pet food diminish, the likelihood that organic will become the “next big thing” in natural pet food increases exponentially. On the human side, retailers Kroger and Costco have taken the extraordinary step of investing in farms to ensure long-term supply of store-brand organic products, and under Nestlé Purina, Merrick’s well-established organic brand, Castor & Pollux, has gained access to the resources of one of the largest pet food producers on the planet. As natural pet food marketers seek to distinguish themselves from the rest of the natural pack, offering organic options may soon become a next logical step.

About The Report

Building on the analysis presented in the previous five editions of this report, this fully updated sixth edition of Natural, Organic and Eco-Friendly Pet Products in the U.S. covers historical and projected retail sales estimates through 2021, competitive strategies of key players, and trends in new product development such as grain-free, grass-fed, superfood ingredients, human-grade, raw pet food (including freeze-dried and dehydrated), eco-friendly nonfood pet products, corporate sustainability initiatives, and retail channel trends. Featuring exclusive data from Packaged Facts’ National Pet Owner Survey, the report homes in on food and non-food purchasing trends across multiple categories, as well as attitudes and demographic characteristics of natural and organic pet product purchasers. View additional information about Natural, Organic, and Eco-Friendly Pet Products in the U.S., 6th Edition, including purchase options, the abstract, table of contents, and related reports at Packaged Facts’ website:

More Packaged Facts reports on pet products and services are available for purchase at:

About Packaged Facts

Packaged Facts, a division of, publishes market intelligence on a wide range of consumer market topics, including consumer demographics and shopper insights, consumer financial products and services, consumer goods and retailing, consumer packaged goods, and pet products and services. Packaged Facts also offers a full range of custom research services. Reports can be purchased at our company website and are also available through

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