The global silica cat litter market was valued at USD 2,570.44 million in 2018 and is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 3.1% during the forecast period (2020–2029).
Cat litter makes lives easier for cat owners around the world as it offers a great solution to trap waste material. The litter industry has recently observed a significant shift towards the utilization of silica gel as litter. Silica cat litter,also known as crystal litter, is the latest innovation in litter offering with improved odor control and superior moisture absorbency. It is an ideal pet waste cleaning material owing to its enhanced characteristics such as non-clumping nature, non-toxic, and produces no dust compared to other cat litters such as bentonite, pine, and wheat. Light crystal silica beads havea complex maze-like structure, wherein the inner framework of the pearl traps dampness along with the smell. The trapped moisture thereafter evaporates, leaving the smell fixed away. Silica litter is recognized as a cleaner, greener, and better choice as it can last up to one month, eventually resulting in a lower carbon footprint. Additionally, silica litter prohibits bacterial growth with its crystalline structure and helps dehydrate feces, which aids in keeping the litter box dry to sustain any growth. This further prevents kidney problems and any urinary tract infection in cats, permitting healthy growth in felines.
The silica cat litter market is expected to witness significant growth opportunities in the future since the product features several advantages over other cat litters currently available in the market. Silica cat litter product is in the growth stage of its life cycle in developed countries of North America and Europe along with some Asian countries such as Japan, Australia, and South Korea. In contrast, the markets in developing countries such as India, Brazil, China, and the Middle East and Africa are in an introductory stage or moving to the growth stage at a healthy pace.
Rising adoption of pets and increasing animal healthcare expenditure are favoring silica cat litter market growth. As per the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), 2017–2018 sourcebook, 31% of cats were adopted from a shelter or rescued. The same percentage was calculated to be around 47% by an APPA survey. In 2017–18, almost 61% of cats were adopted from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), up from 30% in 1999. The rising acceptance and trend to adopt or rescue pets than purchasing from breeders has intensified the growth of the silica cat litter market. Apart from a rise in the adoption rate of pets, the pet care industry has seen tremendous growth over the last decade.
Annual pet care expenses have escalated to a point where pet owners are willing to spend a huge amount on their pets since they are considered to be an imperative part of a family. This factor, in turn, has resulted in an increase in demand for pet foods, medicines, vaccines, and other accessories such as litter boxes. According to the APPA’s National Pet Owners Survey, the average dog or cat owner spends between USD 200 and USD 300 annually on pet food. The survey also claims that the number of pets is expected to rise in the coming years, representing a potential opportunity for the industry. Furthermore, the demographic shift towards smaller and nuclear households is compelling consumers to bridge the familial gap with a feline companion. Additionally, pet owners are progressively treating their pets no less than humans, which has created an opportunity to commercialize this trend into a vast range of goods and services, which will drive the growth of the silica cat litter market in the coming years.
The global silica cat litter market has been segmented on the basis of application and region.
Based on the application, the market has been bifurcated into pet store and household. Globally, the pet store application segment is more likely to grow at a significant CAGR of around 2.6%, whereas in Asia-Pacific, the household segment is projected to expand at a healthy CAGR of 3.7% during the forecast period, 2020–2029. The pet store application encompasses kenneling boards, pet shops, and hostel, among others. Since these places are mostly overcrowded with a large number of pets together, the need for litter boxes is high in order to maintain hygienic surroundings. Using litter boxes for felines has helped service providers reduce the time required for cleaning and offer enhanced customer service. Meanwhile, with the growing adoption of cats among families and millennials, the demand for cat litter boxes has grown, which is consolidating the market for silica cat litter. Growing pet associated expenses and access to a wide range of options are collectively driving the demand for silica cat litter. Individual pet owners are particularly attracted to silica cat litter due to its advantages such as less dust, higher absorption, superior odor control, and easier cleaning.
North America dominated the silica cat litter market in 2018 and is predicted to remain the largest shareholder during the assessment period.The regional market is expected to reach USD 1,782 million by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 2.8%. The U.S. leads North America as well as the global market. A high number of pet owners, deep penetration of pet associated industry, and high expenditure on pet care are among the key factors driving the growth of the U.S. silica cat litter market. According to the 2019–2020 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), 67% of U.S. households, i.e. about 85 million families, own a pet.More than three in five Americans have at least one pet in their household, with ownership highest among the two youngest generations (71% among Gen X and 65% among millennials).
Europe ranks secondas a pet-friendly region after the U.S. France, Germany, Russia, the U.K., Italy, and Ukraine are among the top ten countries with the highest cat population in the world. At the same time, other European Union countries with the largest cat population include Spain, Romania, Poland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Hungary, and the Czech Republic. Attractive employee pet policies integrated by companies such as Nestle Purina, Kimpton Hotels,Atlantic Health System, and HubSpot support the silica cat litter market growth in Europe. Traveling abroad with a pet has become more and more common in the recent couple of years.
Asia-Pacific is pegged to be a lucrative market with the highest growth potential. The regional market is estimated to grow at a healthy CAGR during the forecast period. The Asia-Pacific pet care industry has grown immensely during the last few years, largely due to the increasing pet population and rising awareness. Moreover, growing concerns associated with pet health on account of pet humanization and increased disposable income have led to an increase in spending power and strengthened market development. While the U.S. still ranks as the world’s largest pet care industry, Asia-Pacific is poised to witness global momentum for sales associated with the pet care market. Although Asia-Pacific accounted for lower sales value than North America, Europe, and Latin America in 2018, it recorded a higher CAGR (~12.5%) compared to any other region.
The silica cat litter market in Latin America has witnessed moderate growth and is likely to grow at a steady rate over the assessment period. Brazil accounts for the largest cat population in Latin America and ranks fourth globally after the U.S., China, and Russia,with approximately 14 million cats. Rising per capita per expenditure and increasing pet ownership are the factors uplifting the growth of the market in the region. Additionally, consumer inclination towards pet health and associated products has been overseeing positive growth in Latin America. Pet owners are ready to spend more on pet care and grooming products than ever before.
Key players in the global silica cat litter market include Nestlé Purina PetCare
With the rising acceptance of pet animals and desirable features of silica cat litter, the demand for the product is likely to increase during the forecast period, which will have a positive impact on the market. In anticipation of future demand trends, market players are constantly striving to expand their business. Manufacturers of silica cat litter are adopting various strategies such as marketing and branding, product launch, merger, and acquisition to penetrate the market and create a strong consumer base.For instance, in February 2019, Nestlé Purina, an American producer of pet food, treats, and cat litter announced the expansion of its Bloomfield factory in Southeast Missouri with a USD 115-million investment. This facility expansion was aimed at fulfilling the growing demand for cat litter. Another strategy undertaken by market players is hiking the price of products registering strong demand. In February 2019, Church & Dwightincreasedthe prices of around one-third of its product portfolio, including the Arm & Hammer Cat Litter product.
Along with direct sales channels, manufacturers are equally emphasizing the indirect sales channel by widening their distribution network. With advances and development in connectivity, digitalization has encouraged market players to not only explore offline but various online platforms for the sale of their products. Moreover, firms and organizations are offering instant, speedy delivery to better serve their consumers.
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