Nurturing pet food and pet healthcare as national strategic industries
Public Relations Division
The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (Minister Chung Hwang-keun, MAFRA) announced the "Pet Care Industries* Fostering Strategy" jointly with relevant ministries at an emergency economic ministerial meeting on August 9. *Pet care industry or pet care market encompasses various sectors related to the care and nurturing of pets, including but not limited to pet food, veterinary care, grooming, funeral services, pet accessories and pet insurance.
The pet care market has been expanding and becoming more sophisticated due to the increasing population of pet owners and the elevated status of animals. It is also emerging as a high-employment growth industry. *The domestic pet ownership figures have risen from 3.64 million households and 5.56 million animals (dogs and cats) in 2012 to 6.02 million households and 7.99 million animals in 2022. The domestic market size is estimated to be around KRW 8 trillion in 2022, accounting for approximately 1.6% of the global market size. The domestic market is still growing mainly through domestic consumption, but there is an overall lack of policy support for suitable classification, labeling, evaluation systems, and infrastructure for the pet-related industries. *Global/Domestic Market Size: (in 2022) $378.1 billion / $6.2 billion → (estimated in 2032) $776.2 billion / $15.2 billion (Annual Average Growth of 7.6% / 9.5%↑)
The government aims to foster the pet care industries to generate new production and consumption and expand exports. It will actively pursue three main strategies: (1) Promoting four key industries, (2) Establishing infrastructure for growth, and (3) Expanding overseas exports. A new framework for implementation will also be formed. Minister Chung emphasized, "The pet care industries are widely developed in advanced economies, and are considered to be in early-stage development in South Korea. Given the rapidly changing market dynamics demonstrated by pet humanization and technological innovation, and the perspectives of domestic and international pet owners, fundamental improvements in the pet-related industries, including pet food, are crucial." He added, "Through the development of the pet care industries, we will make the domestic market more vibrant and expand into the global market, with promotion of exports."