Because of the trade war between China and America, Chinese cat and dog owners are struggling to get their hands on American cat and dog food. The more discerning Chinese pet owner is buying American pet food because they simply cannot trust the Chinese stuff.
And frankly, judging by the stories on the Internet over many years of imported Chinese pet food being contaminated, I don’t blame them.
Pet food industry people say that Chinese officials are taking revenge on America by delaying shipments at customs of cat and dog food. One Chinese dog owner in China, Mr Ren, said:
“I have nightmares that wake me up with anxiety about not being able to buy Canidae any more”.
Another Chinese citizen living in Guangzhou has been stocking up American cat food for his orange tabby cat. He is expecting that his favourite American brand of Food is going to be held up at customs. This means it will be held up for a very long time while countless inspections take place. In short the market for American cat food in China is being strangled at customs.
Chinese pet owners are realising that the trade war is affecting them and they are becoming very concerned. The Independent newspaper say that Beijing have taken creative retaliatory steps in tying up imports at the docks.
Pet spending in China has surged eightfold since 2010. It is currently worth about $25 billion annually.
Mr Ren says that he even tastes the pet food himself to check whether it is rotting and poisonous. He claims that some Chinese pet food smells or tastes like rotting fish, decomposing chicken or other unpleasant tastes. It can taste like stale like cooking oil with fat.
It appears that there are no studies available about the quality of Chinese pet food. It also appears that the Chinese authorities have a weak hold on quality standards. You may remember the pet food jerky scandal in America. It concerned the importation of Chinese pet food in the form of jerky which as I recall allegedly poisoned very many dogs.
Contaminated Chinese imports to US
In 2007 waste chemicals from plastics manufacturing were found in Chinese pet food exported to America. The chemicals were used as filler. A poodle owner in a town near Shanghai said that “domestic pet food is poisonous”.
There’s definitely a trust problem amongst Chinese citizens regarding their domestically manufactured pet food. Although the authorities say there is little difference in quality between imported and domestic league produced pet food.
China exported $148 million worth of pet food to the US in 2017 but imported only $6.5 million worth of pet food. I’m surprised to read those statistics. It indicates that many Americans are unaware of the low quality of Chinese pet food products.
The restrictions on the importation of American pet food into China began in May 2018. EPet, a Chinese online marketplace, said:
“Sadly, our pet food industry has been influenced by the trade storm”.
An import agent in Shanghai for American pet food said that his products were inspected at least six times in two months. Before the trade war inspections were much less frequent at less than once a month.
Halo, a pet food producer in Florida said that they were having a tough time entering the Chinese market because of much tighter customs inspections and 25% tariffs.