Pet ownership is huge and growing. An estimated 66% of US households (or 86.9 million homes) now own a pet, an increase of 56% from three decades ago, according to statistics from Forbes Advisor. Researchers also found that Americans spent $136.8 billion on their pets in 2022, up from $123.6 billion the year before.

Pet food takes up a significant share of this annual spend. In the case of dogs, Forbes found that owners shelled out on average $339 per year on food, while for cats the average spend reaches $310 per year. The research further concluded that Gen Z owners (aged 18-25) are likely to allocate even more on special treats for their pets.

With all this in mind, it’s clear the pet food market offers an enormous opportunity to processors and JBT is here to help. Wet or raw, JBT has a solution for your pet food production needs.

Our experience in designing, manufacturing and installing processing lines for moist pet food is second to none. Whether it’s filling and closing of canned pet food, in-container sterilization of cans, pouches, chubs and trays or High Pressure Processing (HPP) technology for more innovative processors, we provide the solution.

Complete line solution

From preparation, cooking and chilling & freezing through to packaging and preservation, JBT can deliver a complete pet food processing line.

A case in point are the range of solutions available from JBT FTNON covering the length of the processing line, which include the Product/Emulsie hopper, Color injection, Extruder, Steaming tunnel (DCC), Cooling tunnel, and Cutting and Accumulation system.

These solutions can be complemented by the Meat Feed and Dosing System from JBT CAT. Designed to transfer product with vacuum and dump it into a hopper scale controlled by pounds per hour software, the VACCAT Pump System allows customers to regulate up to 11,000 lbs per hour.

If injection and marination is required, the range of solutions from JBT Schröder are ideal for  processing meat, poultry, fish, as well as other food products.

Further down the line, JBT Stein’s ProGrill can combine with JBT Formcook Contact and Combi Cookers to achieve optimum results in pet food processing. The ProGrill can be used before the oven line to sear product surfaces and can also be used to fully cook low profile products with flat horizontal surface areas.

Filling and food safety

For increasingly popular pouches and ever-reliable cans, JBT also provides a full range of winning solutions. The Unifiller offers unmatched product versatility: from low viscosity products without particles, to high viscosity products with particles; both cold and hot filled.

Meanwhile JBT Seamers meet the industry’s need for lower maintenance, higher up-time, easy clean-ability and faster can format change-over combined with reliable performance and enhanced operator comfort and safety.

To keep our furry friends in good health, food safety is just as vital for pet food as it is for human food, and here JBT sterilizers play an important role. JBT Batch Retort Sterilizers offer the best way to sterilize small-to-medium volumes of pet foods in a wide variety of containers, while there is simply no better means of sterilizing high volumes of foods in cylindrical metal containers than the JBT Continuous Rotary Pressure Sterilizer.

Also available is the JBT Hydromatic sterilizer (pictured above), an ideal solution for processing products that require long cook and cool times, high throughputs and little or no agitation.

For added safety and improved shelf-life without compromising on taste, High Pressure Pasteurization (HPP) from JBT Avure is an excellent option. Highly effective for inactivating foodborne pathogens as well as extending shelf-life, HPP delivers product ready to be sold as refrigerated or frozen pet food, or sent to a clean room to be formed into shapes such as nuggets, bones, or biscuits.

FIND OUT MORE about JBT Pet food solutions