Russian pet food makers stated their opposition to the invasion of Ukraine through their national pet industry business-to-business publication, Zooinform. The Russian companion animal industry called on pet food and treat exporters to continue supplying Russian markets.
“We, pet industry people, are against the invasion to Ukraine, it’s not us who started this aggression,” Zooinform’s editors wrote in an open letter, presented on behalf of their domestic pet industry. “We don’t support it and there is nothing we can do to stop it. What we can do is to keep doing what we can – to voice our disagreement and pray the war stops, to protect our families, to work and bring happiness to this world, to make it a better place for humans and their pets.”
The letter’s author stated that Zooinform had consulted with major pet industry companies in Russia before making their statement.
The author asked that global pet food, treat and other product suppliers restore or maintain trade with Russia.
“All 70 million pets in Russia need your products,” they wrote. “Pets are not involved in politics, they are not responsible for conflicts or wrong decisions made by somebody else and they should not suffer because of those decisions.”
Russian pet food production growing
Earlier this month, Zooinform reported Rosstat (Federal State Statistics Service) data on pet food production in Russia. In December of 2021, Russian facilities produced 125 thousand tons of pet food, up 17.3% from December 2020 and 11.8% higher than November 2021. Russia’s pet food production volume grew 10% in 2021 over the previous year.
Cat populations in Europe 2020, Russia #1
Cats remained the most populous pet in Europe and Turkey in 2020, beating dogs by approximately 20 million animals, according to data from the European Pet Food Federation (FEDIAF).
Overall, 88 million households in Europe owned a pet in 2020, or 38% of all households. That breaks down into approximately 110 million cats, 90 million dogs, 52 million birds, 30 million small mammals, 15 million aquaria and 9 million reptiles in Europe. Approximately one-quarter of European households included at least one cat or dog in 2020.
Sales of food for those pets reached EUR21.8 billion, with a 2.8% growth rate. By volume, companies sold 8.5 billion metric tonnes of pet food products in 2020. Approximately 150 pet food companies ran 200 plants in Europe. In 2020, those plants employed an estimated 100,000 people.