March 22-24, 2023
Orange County Convention Center
Orlando, FL
American Pet Products Association (APPA) Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA)

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March 13, 2009
Tierra Griffiths / Julie Rowe/ Kerry Sutherland

World’s Largest Annual Pet Products Trade Show Strong Despite Recession

-Global Pet Expo 2009 Lives Up to the Industry’s Reputation of Being Recession Resistant With Growth in Attendance over 2008 -

(Greenwich, CT., March 13, 2009) — Last month's Global Pet Expo in Orlando, Florida is proof that the pet industry is managing to swim in a sinking economy. While retailers in most industries may be worrying about the possibility of the worst year in generations, those in the pet products industry are finding themselves in a bright spot among much of the gloom of American business.

After compiling the final show numbers, leaders from The American Pet Products Association (APPA) and Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA) announced that Global Pet Expo 2009 exceeded expectations in nearly every aspect with thousands of vibrant, innovative and useful new pet products introduced, more buyers attending the show than last year, and a record number of retailers from around the rest of the world.

“With so many stories in the news of decreased attendance at meetings and trade shows in the United States, we were unsure of how the current economic environment would affect our industry and Global Pet Expo 2009,” said Andrew Darmohraj, APPA Senior Vice President. 

And for good reason, according to a survey of its members, UFI, the Global Association of the Exhibition Industry found that 62 percent of show organizers around the world saw their businesses decline in 2008. Nearly 70 percent said they expect at least a 10-percent decrease in revenue in the first half of this year.

But, that was not the case for Global Pet Expo, held February 12-14 in Orlando, Florida, with 779 exhibiting companies, 2,306 booths and total attendance up this year by 2%. That totals more than 4,100 buyers – a positive indicator that despite the economic downturn, this industry continues to stand strong.

“This year’s show both in terms of numbers and energy was an extraordinary example of the resilience of the pet industry and reinforced our research that Americans value their pets. No matter the economic climate pets remain a top household priority,” said Darmohraj.

Furthermore, Global Pet Expo 2009 truly was global this year with international attendance higher than ever before, at nearly 25% of the total buyer attendance rate, representing 65 countries from around the world.  

“Global Pet Expo is always an important part of our sales and marketing strategy,” said Alan Cook, President of Lucky Litter LLC d/b/a/ Brilliant Pet.  “This year was no exception. We received substantial interest in our new products, and were pleased at the record interest and traffic from international retailers.”

This sentiment is backed by another recent study that shows promoting your product or service at a trade show is still one of the best ways to grow. The Center for Exhibition Industry Research found that even though attendance and exhibit space may decrease in recessionary periods, key buyers continue to attend trade shows and the percentage of attendees that actually have plans to purchase remains high. 

“A huge number of exhibitors and visitors left this year’s Global Pet Expo with a renewed sense of buoyancy and a spirit of new momentum,” said Darmohraj.

Global Pet Expo’s success is reflected by industry spending figures announced at the show. As projected, industry spending in 2008 hit $43.2 billion and is projected to grow another 4.9% to $45.4 billion in 2009.

Global Pet Expo is a gathering of attendees from around the world representing the leading retail chains, pet superstores and mass-market retailers, distributors, wholesalers and independent retailers. These attendees spend three days surveying the hottest pet products before they hit store shelves. This year they witnessed everything from a product that teaches fish to perform tricks and a growing number of organic and eco-friendly products, to a lost dog tracker and intelligence graded dog puzzles. Each year thousands of new products are launched and debuted at Global Pet Expo.

Global Pet Expo 2010 will be held March 25-27in Orlando, Florida at the Orange Country Convention Center.



Global Pet Expo, the pet industry’s largest annual trade show, is presented by the American Pet Products Association (APPA) and Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA). The 2009 Show featured 779 exhibitors, 2,306 booths and more than 3,000 new product launches. 4,100 pet product buyers from around the world attended. In 2010, Global Pet Expo will take place March 25-27 in Orlando, FL. Global Pet Expo is open to independent retailers, distributors, mass-market buyers, and other qualified professionals. For more information, visit