SWITZERLAND- Nestle recently released its quarter one 2023 financial results, with Purina PetCare emerging as the largest contributor to its organic growth, owing to good momentum for science-based and premium brands Purina ONE, Purina Pro Plan, and Friskies. 

According to the results released on 25th April, Purina PetCare sales reached US$5,267 million in the first quarter, compared to US$4,629 million posted in the same period last year. 

Similarly, Purina PetCare led growth worldwide for Nestle in the fiscal year 2022, with sales reaching US$19.385 billion, up from US$16.659 billion in FY21.

Purina PetCare performed similarly in the North American region, which includes the United States and Canada. Pet food gained market share, with broad-based demand across channels, particularly e-commerce. 

In Europe, Purina PetCare also gained market share and significantly contributed to Nestle’s overall growth. Premium brands Felix, Friskies, and Gourmet drove this growth, with a new celebrity campaign for Felix resonating with consumers.

In the Asia-Pacific region, Purina PetCare drove growth in Japan and Oceania, with double-digit growth led by Supercoat, Purina ONE, and Felix. 

In China, Purina PetCare gained market share and grew by double digits, driven by Purina Pro Plan dry cat and veterinary products. Similar results characterized Latin America, with double-digit growth registered in Colombia.

The beverages category, including Coffee Mate, Nescafé, and Starbucks products, posted high single-digit growth. 

Coffee saw high single-digit growth, with positive sales developments for Nescafé, Starbucks, and Nespresso. Water saw a sales decrease as temporary capacity constraints for Perrier outweighed strong growth for S. Pellegrino. 

Additionally, sales for Nestlé Professional and Starbucks out-of-home solutions grew at a strong double-digit rate, supported by distribution expansion. 

Similarly, sales in confectionery grew at a double-digit rate, with impressive growth for KitKat and seasonal products. 

Frozen food saw mid-single-digit growth, based on strong demand for Stouffersa, Tombstone, and Jack’s Pizza. However, in February, Nestle decided to wind down its frozen meals and pizza business in Canada starting in the second quarter. 

Nevertheless, Nestlé formed a joint venture with private equity firm PAI Partners for Nestlé’s frozen pizza businesses in Europe, to be headquartered in Germany, operating two facilities, one in Nonnweiler, Germany, and the other in Benevento, Italy.

Growth in the Infant Nutrition segment reached a double-digit rate, with broad-based contributions across geographies and segments. Gerber baby food reported double-digit growth and gained market share. 

Purina to research human-animal bonding 

In other news, Nestle’s Purina announced that its scientists and pet experts will welcome grant proposals from researchers (Ph.D. students) interested in studying the human-animal bond. 

This bi-annual Purina Sponsorship for the Human-Animal Bond studies program gives up to US$30,000 in research funding per project.

Everything we do at Purina is based on science and research and working with the scientific community to grow our collective knowledge about the power of pets in society is part of our DNA,” said Francois Martin, MA, PhD, manager, global pet behavior and welfare at Purina, in a company release.

According to the release, preferences for the proposals are in mental health, shelter pets and adoption, and pets and their role among youth. 

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