the european pet food industry

Industry Background

The birth of the pet food industry can be attributed to James Spratt of Cincinnati, Ohio towards the end of the 19th century, who was travelling to London to sell lightening conductors.

Apparently on arrival at the quayside in London and watching dogs scavenging on discarded biscuits, he saw the need for specially prepared food for animals and focused on producing biscuits for dogs. And so the prepared pet food industry was born. The first canned foods for dogs were produced in the USA. This was followed on a commercial scale by Chappel Brothers in the UK in the 1930s who began canning a meat and cereal for dogs.

With the expansion of knowledge about pet animal nutrition and food technology, the industry has continued to develop and diversify.

More than 100 years later on, more than half of all owners in Europe feed their pets on prepared pet food and, as the benefits are increasingly recognised, the trend continues to grow.