During the Corona period, the number of dogs and cats in this country increased by 10 percent. FOCUS online spoke to Pets Deli managing director Tania Moser about overcrowded animal shelters, proper nutrition and why saving at the wrong end leads to increased costs.

FOCUS online: In the pandemic, the number of corona pets increased significantly. Not bad for a pet food supplier, right?

Tanja Moser: Yes, during the pandemic, 1.8 million dogs and cats were added, a total of 17 million now live in Germany. But we at Pets Deli have grown faster and have grown 100 percent in each of the last two years.

But they haven’t been overwhelmed by demand like toilet paper suppliers.

Moser: Don’t say that. When ex-Chancellor Merkel spoke to the nation in March 2020, our dry food was sold out very quickly.

Animal shelters are now overcrowded. Is that why you created “Adopt dont shop”? And what is it all about?

Moser: Yes, animal shelters now have massive problems. Not only are they overcrowded, but they also get fewer donations. We therefore call on you to first look at the animal shelter and not go straight to the nearest breeder to look for a pet.

What do I have to pay attention to when I get an animal from the animal shelter?

Moser: I have to think about it beforehand and talk to experts. Which dog suits me, how much exercise does he need, what character does he have. In addition, what does my daily routine look like and how much space do I have for the fur nose, as we call the animals.

As a supplier of pet food, Pets Deli wants to be a problem solver. But honestly: how can you transport that via the feed?

Moser: We can do that for several reasons. On the one hand, almost only animal mums and dads work for us. We are experts. On the other hand, I maintain that no competitor is anywhere near as data-driven as we are.

What does that mean for me as a pet owner?

Moser: Based on our data, we know, for example, which breed has which intolerances and which product suits the animal. In general, 70 percent have diet-related problems with their dog. One in five is obese from overfeeding or improper feeding.

They mainly sell directly to the end customer. How does the advisory competence come about?

Moser: That’s right, we do 90 percent D2C (direct to consumer). People who don’t know our brand directly can often find us via Google when they ask about allergies, what to give to which breed, etc. Then we forward the customers to our online feed advisor, which works very well.

Can people still afford high-priced animal feed if they themselves have less money? Inflation and high energy prices are draining customers’ wallets.

Moser: The crisis in e-commerce is everywhere, but less so here than in the fashion sector. We do not yet see any reluctance to buy from existing customers. The price for acquiring new customers has gone up. But in the long run it will recover. In addition, we are in the premium range in terms of price, but do not have any luxury items.

Did you have to raise the prices?

Moser: So far we haven’t increased the range by 80 percent, but rather given up a bit of a margin. But the industry has had some troubles even during the pandemic. There was a shortage of raw materials and meat. In addition to the delivery delays, less was slaughtered, which has already made itself felt in price increases in our purchasing department.

If you are a real animal lover, treat your four-legged friend to something. Do you see a humanization trend?

Moser: Yes, we are definitely observing that. And this is what our food looks like when it contains chicken, carrots or zucchini. However, this is not a marketing gimmick on our part, studies have shown that there is no point in using cheaper raw materials and saving on feed. You then pay the bill later at the vet.

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