Building pet food consumer goodwill and loyalty –

Here’s yet another interesting phenomenon emerging from the ongoing coronavirus pandemic: Consumer trust in famers, agriculture and other food sources continues to rise. Does this have any implications for pet food?

In a recent “Feed4Thought” survey conducted by Cargill, 84% of consumers in the U.S., Vietnam, Brazil and Norway expressed confidence in farmers to meet demands for food and feed for growing populations. “More than half of consumers indicate they feel positively toward/appreciative of farmers, with one-third saying their perceptions have improved compared to pre-pandemic,” read a Cargill press release. That jibes with two-thirds of the consumers (of 2,500 surveyed in the four countries) acknowledging increased pressure on livestock farmers to supply “safe, affordable protein” since the pandemic began.

The survey followed one conducted by Gallup in August 2020, which saw U.S. consumers ranking farming and agriculture as the top industry in terms of positive impressions, which were up 11% over July 2019. While the industry has always ranked relatively high, “this is the first time in Gallup’s 20 years of tracking views of business and industry sectors that farming and agriculture have overtaken the former top ranking industries of restaurants and computers,” wrote Victoria Broehm and Lacie Dotterweich in a blog post for the American Feed Industry Association.

As they alluded, the restaurant industry has previously ranked higher; despite so many restaurants having to close (permanently, in some cases) due to pandemic-driven lockdowns, the industry still came in third in the latest