Friday, February 26, 2010

How consumers view petfood ingredients

Megan Gill, territory manager for Hill’s Pet Nutrition, and Dr. Megan Williams, a veterinarian with Clear Lakes Animal Wellness, explained how consumers view petfood ingredients.
Corn is one ingredient that is seen as “bad” by consumers but is actually good: It has healthy fatty acids, protein, antioxidants, energy and it’s highly digestible,
according to Gill.
Williams stated that preservatives also aren’t harmful and are even necessary in order to keep petfood safe.

Menu Foods reports increased net income

The Menu Foods Income Fund reported net income for its fiscal year 2009 as US$13.7 million, a substantial improvement compared to a loss of US$6.8 million in 2008. In addition, the pet industry fund reported EBITDA of US$33.3 million for 2009, which is an increase of 46% from 2008.
"Our strong performance in 2009 marks the first time since 2006 that the fund has been profitable in each quarter of the year and results in 2009 being the third most profitable year since the fund went public in 2002," stated Paul Henderson, president and chief executive officer, Menu Foods GenPar Limited.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

AFIA hosts 2 Salmonella webcasts

The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) and its Pet Food Committee have designed two educational webcasts for this spring to help feed and petfood industry personnel better understand how to control and manage Salmonella.
The first webcast,
Controlling Salmonella in Your Facility, will take place March 23 from 2 to 4:30 pm EDT with Dr. Frank Jones, professor emeritus of the University of Arkansas.
The second webcast,
Management Considerations for Salmonella/Microbial Control, will take place April 22 from 2 to 4:30 p.m. EDT with a representative from the Food and Drug Administration's Center for Veterinary Medicine; Richard Sellers, AFIA vice president of feed regulation and nutrition; and Jarrod Kersey, AFIA Pet Food Committee liaison.

Retailer donates petfood on WellPet’s behalf

Pet specialty retailer Buster’s Natural Pet Supply in Conifer, Colorado, USA, distributed Eagle Pack food on behalf of the WellPet Foundation to the Intermountain Humane Society, Park County Animal Control, Ark -Valley Humane Society, Odaroloc Sled Dogs and Leadville Humane Society, each of whom are providing care to the rescued dogs.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Column suggests food allergy cause of cat’s UTI

Dr. Michael Fox of the Pocono Record recently addressed the cause of a long history of urinary-tract inflammation in a reader’s 6-year-old neutered cat in his column. After two cultures and X-rays, the reader’s veterinarian had yet to find the cause.
Fox suggested that the cat “may have a food hypersensitivity that is causing inflammation in the urinary bladder and tract.” He went on to explain that corn is a common culprit, and corn-sensitive cats on a corn-free diet can still have a flare-up when a corn-based cat litter is used.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Canidae receives exporting award, partners with petfood bank

Canidae Pet Foods has received a 2010 Exporter of the Year award from Commercial News USA, the export magazine of the US Department of Commerce.
The company has also recently partnered with t
he Pongo Fund Pet Food Bank in Portland, Oregon, USA, to distribute superpremium petfood to anyone in need. Beginning with a donation of US$125,000 last year, the petfood company continues to assist the Pongo Fund by ensuring that families are able to feed their pets.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Friday, February 19, 2010

(w)holistic petfood

Despite the fact that I am a petfood veteran I find it very difficult to understand what (w)holistic is.
I saw a few definitions of (w)holistic petfoods, but the conclusion for the layman can only be: “so this is a complete food!”
The Oxford Thesaurus (1990) doesn’t provide a synonym, whereas the Concise Oxford Dictionary provides two alternatives for (w)holism:
the theory that certain wholes are to be regarded as greater than the sum of their parts; this philisophical theory seems to be a bit far-fetched to sell a bag og dog or catfood!
However the 2nd alternative I found may provide a bit more grip:
the treating of the whole person including mental and social factors rather than just the symptoms of a disease. This clearly has a medical background!
To which extent this can and may apply to pet animals is not for me to judge, but the 2nd description certainly leads to some more questions:
- is (w)holistic related to the food and the nutrients?
- or is it a human lifestyle which is transplanted into our companion animals? ...Read the entire forum post on

Thursday, February 18, 2010

What do you think about the new dog food from HSUS?

Did you hear the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) is coming out with a line of dog food? It's called Humane Choice , and HSUS says it is cruelty free, all natural and certified organic. The main protein source is soy.
I’m not surprised by the type of product HSUS is launching nor its professed reasons: “to offer consumers a wholesome and nutritious dog food that does not contain animal-based proteins or support the factory farming industry,” according to a press release. “It’s an opportunity to support our work confronting animal cruelty,” a spokeswoman added.
But I have to confess surprise that an organization like HSUS would even enter this marketplace. ..Read the full blog on

Louisiana SPCA introduces 'Biggest Loser Doggie Style'

The Louisiana Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is hosting “Biggest Loser Doggie Style” to help local pets lose weight, according to The Times-Picayune.
For eight weeks, 15 dogs will be evaluated by a pet nutritionist, given exercises designed to increase their mobility and learn the path to being thinner, healthier dogs.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Cesar treats win petfood product of the year

Product of the Year USA announced its selection of Cesar Treats as the Pet Food Category Winner for 2010.

Purina, Martha Stewart team up for US petfood tour

Purina has partnered with Martha Stewart to launch the Purina ONE's Tour for Heroes & Pet Food Giveaway.
The tour began in San Francisco, California, USA, on Feb. 3 and will continue to travel across the US setting up food banks at local shelters to give away petfood to those in need until Feb. 26.
About 24,000 pounds of dog food have been donated to shelters so far.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Nature's Variety issues raw diet recall

Nature's Variety has initiated a voluntary recall of its Chicken Formula Raw Frozen Diet for dogs and cats with a "Best If Used By" date of 11/10/10 because the products may be contaminated with Salmonella. The products affected are limited to chicken medallions, patties and chubs.
The affected product was distributed through retail stores and internet sales in the US and in limited distribution in Canada.
No pet or human illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this lot code.

Proposed legislation to prevent petfood contamination

After the case of the melamine-laced petfood that killed thousands of pets three years ago, US Congress is stepping in to propose legislation that will help prevent petfood contamination from happening again.
Food Safety Modernization Act is intended to amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act but is still awaiting debate in the Senate.
In the House, the
Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009 was passed July 2009 and would give the Food and Drug Administration more power to prevent contaminations.
Michael Markarian, chief operating officer at the Humane Society of the United States, told the
Scripps Howard News Service that the bills will give the FDA additional authority to control recalls and to make sure poisonous materials don't come in from abroad.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Pet industry grows 5.4% in 2009

The American Pet Products Association released its annual review of spending data and reports, which shows that overall spending in the pet industry grew by 5.4% from 2008 to 2009 and is projected to increase by 4.9% in 2010 to US$45.4 billion.
The petfood sector was up by 3.6%, going from US$16.8 billion in 2008 to US$17.4 billion in 2009.
The continued growth for petfood is credited to pet humanization that can be seen in petfood trends following human food and diet trends.

FDA seizes petfood stored in unsanitary conditions

The US Food and Drug Administration confiscated more than 1,500 cases of human and animal food products stored at Mid-States Closeouts, a distribution warehouse in Ellsworth, Wisconsin, USA, under a federal warrant investigating pest contamination.

China to regulate petfood

The Executive Yuan of China has passed the eighth draft amendment to its Animal Protection Law to regulate petfood products and suppliers, according to The China Post.
The draft states that petfood manufacturers, processors and importers will be under the regulation of the government, have to register their products and provide proof of their products' safety.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Pet helpline offers tip list to owners

In honor of Valentine’s Day, the Pet Poison Helpline has compiled a list of 14 ways pet owners can help their pets stay healthy and safe.
The list recommends owners cut back on petfood by 10-25% of the current amount they are feeding their pets to curb pet obesity and give guests treats to feed owners’ cat or dog when they come over to prevent them from feeding other foods which may be harmful.

Tainted petfood case ends in fine, probation

Stephen and Sally Miller, the couple who imported tainted melamine from China that killed or sickened thousands of pets in 2007, were recently sentenced in Missouri, USA, according to the The Kansas City Star.
The judge fined the couple and their company ChemNutra Inc. US$35,000 in addition to placing them on probation for three years and barring them from importing
petfood ingredients.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

9Lives finds cats not getting proper nutrition

A survey commissioned by 9Lives of US cat owners found that 94% are confident they feed their cats the most nutritious meals possible. However, 48% admit they’ve fed their cat table scraps, which do not provide the essential nutrients cats need.
In order to help owners be aware of the nutrition cats need, 9Lives is offering its online
Nutrition Simulator, which provides nutritional advice and information on selecting the proper peffood for a cat.

UK domestic cat and dog population larger than thought

A new study has found that the UK domestic cat and dog population is larger than previously reported by industry figures.
The paper published in The Veterinary Record by Dr. Jane Murray in the
Department of Clinical Veterinary Science at Bristol University and colleagues aimed to estimate the number of UK domestic cats and dogs and identify the characteristics of their owners.
The study also found the following:

*The likelihood of dog ownership increased as the household size increased;
*Dogs were more likely to be owned by households with gardens and rural households and less likely to be owned by households with someone educated to degree level and households with cats or children less than 11 years old;
*Female respondents and those less than 55 years old were more likely to own a dog than others; and
*There are a similar numbers of pet cats and dogs.

AFIA petfood conference largest in event history

The American Feed Industry Association’s (AFIA) Pet Food Committee and USPOULTRY's Poultry Protein & Fat Council organized and sponsored the Pet Food Conference during the 2010 International Feed Expo.
The two-day Pet Food Conference, the largest in the event's history, included speakers such as Dr. Dan McChesney of the
US Food and Drug Administration's Center for Veterinary Medicine and Dr. Frank Jones of the University of Arkansas. Both addressed topics related to controlling Salmonella in the production of petfood.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Evanger’s works with special needs program

Evanger’s Dog and Cat Food Co. has partnered with Keshet, an organization that provides educational, recreational and vocational programs for teenagers with special needs, in Chicago, Illinois, USA.
Program participants practice their motor skills, counting capabilities and more by bagging Evager’s dog food and interacting with real customers in the petfood store.

HSUS launches organic petfood

The Humane Society of the United States is launching an all-natural and certified organic dog food called Humane Choice.
The HSUS said it developed the product to offer consumers a wholesome and nutritious dog food that does not contain animal-based proteins.

RedMoon offers customizable petfood

RedMoon Custom Pet Food now offers custom-blended petfood based on specific nutritional needs of individual pets that owners can order online, have named after their pets and receive on their doorsteps.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

MBA student looking for petfood case study

I am an MBA student at Seton Hill University in Greensburg, PA, and I'm looking for a petfood company that I can use as a case study for my final project.
It involves a strategic look at the company including posting financials and an in depth look at business as a whole. It is presented in April to a panel of professors and peers.
If you are interested please contact me at

Dog magazine releases its pet health tips

K9 Magazine recently released its 50 tips for keeping dogs healthy.
The list included recommendations for owners to feed dogs raw, fresh foods; avoid petfoods with by-products and preservatives; and give dogs a bone or non-chemical dog chew.

PetSafe set to fund behaviorist position

PetSafe, a manufacturer of pet safety and behavior products, will fund one of the few veterinary school behaviorist positions in the USA.
The newest Chair in Veterinary Behavior will work at the
College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Tennessee.
The position was formed to research and gain understanding of animal behaviors that may jeopardize a pet remaining in a home environment. The ultimate goal of an animal behaviorist is to help protect the bond between a human and companion animal.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Nutritionist releases petfood cookbook

Lucy Postins, pet nutritionist and founder of The Honest Kitchen, an all-natural, human-grade pet products company, announced the release of her first petfood cookbook, "Made out of Love."
Made out of Love includes recipes for toppings, treats, main dishes, and raw cuisines that owners can make for their pets at home.

Profits from bracelet to help Haitian animals

Best known for its I'm Tired of... bracelets, ITo launched a Haiti Animal Aid bracelet and will donate 100% of the profits to Best Friends Animal Society to support its rescue effort in Haiti.
“We launched our first Haiti bracelet last week to support Doctors Without Borders and now it’s also critical that we help the animals in Haiti,” said Dan Hoffman, ITo co-founder.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Companies join forces for pet store grand opening

My Perfect Pet, a frozen fresh petfood company, will help kick off the grand opening of the newest location of Unleashed by PETCO – a small concept pet store – later this month in Chula Vista, California, USA.
My Perfect Pet will offer pets and their owners samples of all-natural dog food.

Study suggests incorrect labeling on weight-loss petfood

The Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University conducted a recent study on 100 commercially available weight management diets and found that information on the back of the petfood bags may not be reliable.
A wide variation existed in recommended calorie intake, kilocalories and cost for diets marketed for weight loss in pets.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Merrick continues donating petfood to shelters

Merrick Pet Care has donated about 400,000 pounds of petfood to 16 no-kill shelters in the past several months as part of its efforts to combat the effects of the economy on smaller, no-kill shelters that do not necessarily have the means to promote themselves and secure funding for petfood and supplies.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

SPCALA needs petfood donations

The Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals Los Angeles is almost depleted of petfood for the 4,000 dogs and cats living at its shelters, and it is asking for emergency contributions of money and food from individuals.
Donations have dwindled to less than 10% of what they were before the recession, president of SPCALA, Madeline Bernstein, told the
Los Angeles Times.

Kitchenware for serving petfood now available

Australian designer Belinda Jennings has released her line of exclusive kitchenware for serving petfoodMuttlery & Catlery.
The range currently includes a pet spoon and pet cup designed to make serving wet and dry food easier for the pet owner.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Monday, February 1, 2010