Petfood Innovation Workshop opening session – Pet Food in the Age of Pet Parents: Consumer Mindsets and Assumption Missteps – presented by David Sprinkle, research director for Packaged Facts
The pet parenting mindset is most influential in the most elemental of categories in our industry: pet food. This impact is readily apparent in pet nutrition product claims and formulations such as grain-free, organic, exotic meat protein, paleo, limited ingredient, antioxidant- or probiotic-rich, and grass-fed. A varying combination of palatability, nutritional, environmental, and pampering issues are front-of-mind for pet parents in their pet food and pet treat choices, which are essential to the all-important bond between human and pet.
Drawing on new data from Packaged Facts National Pet Owner Surveys and other sources, this kick-off presentation sets the stage for exploration of the critical product purchase drivers of pet owners who define themselves as pet parents, beginning with an analysis of their usage patterns for dry vs. wet pet foods and relative interest levels in fresh, frozen, and freeze-dried pet foods as alternative formats. The exploration of pet parents’ impact on the evolution of the pet food market will continue in the Pet Family Feud workshop activity at K-State Olathe.
Sprinkle sets the direction for Packaged Facts’ pet product market and shopper insight reports and manages the firm’s pet owner survey program. In this context, he has presented on the pet market at conference events including Petfood Forum, Global Pet Expo, PIJAC’s Top2Top, Private Label Manufacturers Association Pet Industry Panel, SupplySide MarketPlace, SupplySide West Animal Nutrition Summit, PIJAC Canada National Pet Industry Trade Show and VetHealth Global. Prior to PackagedFacts, Sprinkle worked for the Marigny Research Group as an analyst, editor and research coordinator for consumer product and demographic reports. He also taught business communications at Tulane University’s Freeman School of Business, where he earned his MBA.