Consumers regard hygiene as more important than other considerations when purchasing pet products, according to new independent research by online market research panel Toluna.

Consumers regard hygiene as more important than other considerations when purchasing pet products, according to new independent research by online market research panel Toluna.

Concern over cleanliness was ranked higher than ease of use, simple assembly and price, according to findings by Toluna for antibacterial protection specialist Microban Europe.

69.8% of pet product consumers classed hygiene as their main consideration.The sample product chosen for the study was a plastic cat litter box. The overall results from more than 350 consumers when asked to rank features by importance were:

  1. Hygiene (69.8%)
  2. Ease of use and convenience (52.8%)
  3. Simple assembly and disassembly (42.7%)
  4. Carbon filter to minimise odour (40.4%)
  5. Price (36.2%)
  6. High quality plastic (25.4%)
  7. Portability (20.9%)
  8. Colour and look of the product (12.7%)

Despite that the results are possibly as you would expect for a litter tray, Microban Europe‘s business development director Mike Langley claimed the results were a good indication of the priorities of consumer buyers in the pet sector on a range of products.

He said: “The spread of bacteria from pets is a concern to owners which is why they are concerned about hygiene […] Having antibacterial protection built into pet beds, carriers, litter trays, litter scoops, food and water bowls gives products an added level of protection against cross-contamination.”

According to the company, these new pet sector results are broadly in line with general consumer product research carried out by Toluna earlier this year, which showed that 54.2% of consumers “strongly agree” that they would prefer to buy a product with built-in antibaterial protection while a further 18% “agree” – a total of 72.2%.

Mr Langley said: “This shows that there is a definite appetite among consumers for products of all kinds that have antibacterial protection, probably far in excess of the number currently available in most market sectors including pets.”

  • Antibacterial protection from Microban Europe is already used by pet product manufacturers, such as Pet Mate in the US where protection is incorporated into a range of bed and feeding products.
Image iStockphoto.com/hutchyby
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