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Fido is big business in N.J.: Pet industry has billion-dollar-plus impact

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Our pets all have major impacts on our lives, but — more surprisingly — the pet industry has a growing economic impact on the U.S. that reaches well into the billions of dollars.

And that impact is more than $1 billion in New Jersey alone, according to Mike Bober, president of the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council.

“The responsible pet industry produces almost $1.85 billion for the New Jersey economy, contributes over $190 million in taxes to the state and to local governments and employs almost 25,000 people,” he said. “This is just a fraction of the 1.3 million jobs and $60 billion-plus in wages the industry provides to hard-working Americans throughout the nation.”

According to the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University, the pet industry is one of the fastest growing sectors in the country, a fact that correlates to an upswing in pet ownership.

A study by the center found that the U.S. pet industry generated $221.1 billion in total economic activity in 2015, with an economic output of $3.5 billion in New Jersey alone.

The study found that, in New Jersey, pet food manufacturing produces $585 million in sales, while pet services and products produce $694 million in sales combined.

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