Part 3 of a new blog series that features industry segments and explores how to use the Branded Program to its fullest potential. This post is about Pet Food.
by John Eppinger, Branded Program Associate, Food Export-Northeast
International sales are more important than ever to grow your business and diversify risk from the U.S. domestic market. Marketing support is essential to grow those international sales. Food Export’s Branded Program recognizes marketing’s essential role and helps make it possible by reimbursing Midwest and Northeast food and agricultural suppliers for 50% of their international marketing expenses.
In this blog series we feature a new industry segment each month and give specific examples per industry segment of how suppliers can utilize the Branded Program to the fullest of its potential.
What if I told you that the “food” in Food Export did not just represent food for humans? While most of Food Export’s companies produce food for human consumption, there are a lot of pet food producing companies as well.
Since 2018, suppliers of pet food have been reimbursed over $5.6 million for 50% of their international marketing expenses.
We reimburse a variety of creative international promotions in the Branded Program, and promotion of pet food is no exception. Here are a few popular types of promotions for pet food:
The pet food sector has the unique opportunity to utilize cute animals when marketing their products. In the photo below, you will see how U.S. pet food producers often adapt their product to the foreign market they are targeting. In this case, they ran Facebook ads in Hong Kong.
Export Packaging & Labeling
Foreign countries almost always require U.S. companies to change their packaging to meet the importing countries rules and regulations. We can reimburse for the design, translation, printing, and stickering of your pet food product packaging. You can learn more about developing foreign market complaint labels in our recent blog.
Food Export participants have utilized creating ads for a variety of mediums; this includes in magazines, on websites, and even in television programs. Below you will see a screenshot of a video advertisement made by Chicken Soup for the Soul targeting the Canadian market. (Note the U.S. origin statement on the right. For international marketing it is always required.)
The exhibition cost of presenting at a trade show is an eligible expense in the Branded Program. This includes trade show booth design, shipping trade show materials to the show, and the travel costs for international shows.
Popular pet food shows that companies attend and receive reimbursement for include the following:
Giveaway items are a great way for companies at trade shows to leave potential customers with something to remember you by. These come in all shapes in sizes, the one below is a to-go bag from Annamaet Petfoods. Don’t forget, all reimbursable give-away items must include a U.S. origin statement!
Check out these companies who’ve successfully utilized the Branded Program to support their international sales:
In 2020 Grandma Mae’s Country Naturals, utilized Food Export – Northeast’s Branded Program to build new relationships including 68 new distributorships and even a first-time sale to China. Through utilizing the program they also earned sales of over $2 Million to Hong Kong, Taiwan, China, and South Korea.
Since 2011, Best Breed Inc., has been a prosperous Branded Program participant, and that growth continued in 2019 where they reported yet another increase in new export sales to South Korea. The supplier also reported that they expect sales over the next 12 months to continue with positive growth. In addition to these excellent sales numbers, Best Breed Inc. also announced a new agent partnership in the South Korean market while utilizing their allocated Market Access Program (MAP) funding.
How Can We Help?
Are you promoting pet food products in foreign markets? We’d love to work with you! Get started today with a pre-qualification here.
We’d also encourage you to reach out to other organizations that offer export development programs focused specifically on your industry:
Make sure to check out the social media accounts for the partner organizations listed above to get the most up to date info on their events and efforts in the industry!
Upcoming Food Export Pet Food Events
Your Connection To Growth®
©2023 Food Export Association of the Midwest USA and Food Export USA–Northeast. All Rights Reserved.
Food Export–Midwest and Food Export–Northeast prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, familial/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity. (Not all bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require reasonable accommodations or alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact us. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.
To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online https://www.ascr.usda.gov/filing-program-discrimination-complaint-usda-customer.
Food Export–Midwest and Food Export–Northeast reserve the right to deny services to any firm or individual which, in the sole opinion of Food Export–Midwest and Food Export–Northeast, does not comply with FAS, MAP or Food Export–Midwest and Food Export–Northeast regulations or policies, or otherwise offer the best opportunity to achieve its mission of increasing food and agricultural exports. Submission of any false or misleading information may be grounds for rejection or subsequent revocation of any application or participation. Food Export–Midwest and Food Export–Northeast are equal opportunity employers and providers.