What’s The Deal With Pet Food Prices?
Americans love their pets. Many of us would do anything to keep them happy. Apparently, pet food manufacturers know this. How else can you explain the absolute extortion happening in pet food prices?
While, the prices of everything have been going up, pet food prices seemed to me to be going up way faster than almost any other food items. When prices rise fast, there is usually a reason. Bread prices went crazy, because of the wheat shortages caused by the war in Ukraine. The pandemic caused labor shortages that drove up the costs of computer chips and everything including new cars that rely on them.
So what is the deal with pet foods? First of all, it is not just a perception that pet food prices are rising faster than other foodstuffs. A new truthaboutpetfood.com survey confirms it. They compared the prices of common grocery items with pet foods. Here is some of what they found.
Their survey found that Honey Nut Cheerios cereal rose 38.8% in the last two years, Campbells Chunky Steak and Potato soup went up 26.9% and Nature Valley Granola bars are up 19%
Prices on pet foods are going up much more on average. Merrick Adult Grain Free Chicken dry cat food increased by 103.8% in the last two years. Another Purina pet food brand, this time Purina Pro Plan Focus Sensitive Skin and Stomach formula increased more than 85%.
A Pet Age report says, while manufacturing prices have stabilized, inflation in pet food retail prices have accelerated, particularly canned cat foods and dog foods. Since most pet foods are rated as Feed Grade by the Food and Drug Administration, meaning they use inferior quality of ingredients and less restrictive transport regulations and refrigeration requirements, increased costs for pet foods shouldn't be as significant as human food products. Yet, they are rising faster in many cases.
This points to a distinct likelihood that some of these price increases are just an old fashioned case of price gouging.
Add this to astronomical veterinarian rates and the simple joy of owning and loving a pet is getting out of reach for many people. Maybe that's why we're seeing huge over-crowding in pet shelters around the country. Sadly, our beloved pets are often paying the price for greed.