Friday, May 31, 2013

Creator of Freshpet petfood ads wins award

    The Terri & Sandy Solution, a strategic and creative advertising agency located in New York, USA, won the Silver Effie for its campaign on behalf of Freshpet petfood brand. 
    The Effie recognizes advertising effectiveness. After the release of the “Protest” campaign, Freshpet sales grew 60 percent, making it among fastest-growing petfood companies in America. The campaign, developed by The Terri & Sandy Solution, highlights Freshpet’s benefit of fresh, all-natural dog food and contrasts the brand with other dog food brands. The television commercial, entitled “Protest,” features a variety of dogs wearing protest signs that read, “No Processed Food for Pooches,” “Pups Against Proplyene Glycol” and “Pomeranians Against Preservatives.” 

UK petfood manufacturer granted funding for expansion

    MPM Products was granted a £10 million (US$ 15.1 million) funding package from HSBC for significant expansion over the next two years.
    The manufacturer of premium dog and cat foods intends to use the development capital to expand its footprint in the petfood markets in the UK and overseas. The funding package, part of HSBC’s £5 billion (US$7.5 billion) International SME Fund, will be used to fund a product development program and geographical expansion. 
    James Bracewell, MPM ’s financial director, said, “This funding package will enable us to ramp up our growth strategy and ultimately allow us to achieve our mission – to feed as many dogs and cats as we can, wherever they are.”

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Natural Balance Pet Foods, Del Monte sign merger agreement

    Del Monte Foods and Natural Balance Pet Foods Inc. have signed a merger agreement. As part of the agreement, Natural Balance Pet Foods, makers of super-premium dog and cat food, will join Del Monte’s pet products portfolio.
    The merger includes the equity interest held by private-equity firm VMG Partners. 
    “Natural Balance will continue to offer pet parents super-premium, high quality formulas that they have come to know and expect, and we look forward to continuing to nurture our valued relationships with our customers and other partners,” said Joey Herrick, president and founder, Natural Balance.

Rural pet owners, couples with no kids spend more on petfood, pet supplies

    Pet owners ages 55 to 64 and couples without children are most likely to pamper their pets, compared to those pets owned by single pet owners and single parents, according to a new analysis by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
    In general, American pet owners spend about US$500 on average, about 1 percent of their annual pet budget. But, pet owners from 55 to 64 years old and couples without children spend hundreds of dollars more than pet owners in their 20s and 30s. This equated to Americans’ overall spending on pets of US$61.4 billion in 2012. 
    Spending on petfood in 2011 reached an average of US$182.75, compared to US$142.6 spent on veterinary care in 2011. Despite the higher overall spending on pets, one-quarter of pet owners said they didn’t visit the vet in 2011, according to the US Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook
    The analysis also found that rural pet owners spent more on their pets than urban pet owners, at US$716 per year, on average, about 48 percent more than pet owners in the city. 
    One explanation is that city pet owners spend money on other activities, such as movies or concerts, which may not be as widely available in the country. Another is that pet owners in rural areas spend more on petfood because they own more dogs and cats. In rural Maryland, USA, Bureau of Labor Statistics economist and report author, Steven Henderson, said, “People drop off pets out here. We have a changing number of cats that we feed.”

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Pedigree Feeding Project names two newest cities to receive free petfood

    Pedigree petfood brand named Erie, Pennsylvania, USA, and Detroit/ Flint, Michigan, USA, as the newest communities to participate in the Pedigree Feeding Project – a program that supplies shelters with 100 percent of their core dog food needs at no cost.
    Pedigree began the search for two new communities in January, asking dog lovers to visit the brand's Facebook page to nominate a community or shelter. Two winners were voted on among five finalists announced by Miranda Lambert in March. Along with Erie and Detroit/Flint, the Pedigree Feeding Project also feeds Nashville, Tennessee, USA, and Chicago, Illinois, USA. 

Bosch expands vertical form-fill-seal packaging test facility

    Bosch Packaging Technology, a supplier of processing and packaging technology solutions, completed expansion of its vertical form-fill-seal test facility in New Richmond, Wisconsin, USA. 
    The US$850,000 vertical expansion, which started in May 2012 and was completed in December, helps Bosch accommodate two full VFFS packaging lines that include secondary packaging, such as case erecting, loading and closing. The expansion also enables Bosch to provide customers with equipment training for a smooth start- and ramp-up of production, from hands-on operation during the Factory Acceptance Testing to Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute-certified classroom training. 
    The facility's expansion included several sustainable elements, such as windows with low-emissive glass, T8 flourescent lamps, incorporation of a point-of-use water heater, variable frequency drives and more. 

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Pioneer Natural Pet Foods expands production capacities

    Pioneer Natural Pet Foods is offering a new resource for private-label co-packing, thanks to the purchase of the Pied Piper facility in Hamlin, Texas, USA, by new ownership. 
    Pioneer Pet Foods upgraded the 148,000-square-foot facility and expanded its capacity for dry kibble dog and cat foods as well as baked and extruded biscuits. The facility, with three production plants, recently scored a 97 percent for cleanliness, food safety, pest control and sanitation from auditing company Randolph and Associates. 
    Learn more about the company's capabilities by contacting them at +1.325.576.3300 (Hamlin facility- Dwayne Hunter) or +1.805.416.5034 (corporate office- Dr. Elliott Harvey). 

Wet petfood manufacturer De Haan temporarily relocates production

    Wet petfood manufacturer De Haan Petfood BV has temporarily relocated its production after it was stopped following an incident on May 7
    The petfood company suspended production at its facility in Nieuwkoop, the Netherlands, after an explosion in a retort severely damaged the production line. The damaged part of the production line was removed and the facility was cleaned. 
    De Haan negotiated with colleague petfood manufacturers to temporarily relocate parts of its production until the line at its facility is repaired.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Pet Market Industry report available from Key Note Market Intelligence

    Key Note Market Intelligence published the latest Pet Market Industry market report, examining the pet market industry in the UK.
    The report reviews the UK's leading companies, as well as the wider economy the sector serves. The report is divided into the following sections:
    • Executive Summary
    • Market Definition
    • Market Size
    • Industry Background
    • Competitor Analysis
    • SWOT Analysis
    • Buying Behaviour
    • Current Issues
    • The Global Market
    • The Future
    • Benchmarking
    To order the report, please contact Adam Pharos of Key Note at +0203.405.1145.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Latest Victam publication includes info on 2014 animal feed conferences

    Victam International released its spring edition of Showtime, available for download online. This latest edition of Showtime contains information on animal feed production tonnages, rice consumption, technical articles, and information on the FIAAP, VICTAM and GRAPAS Asia 2014 exhibitions and conferences.
    In addition to information on the FIAAP, VICTAM and GRAPAS Asia 2014 exhibitions, Showtime contains information on the first ASEAN Feed & Rice Symposium and summits, held during the 2014 event in Bangkok, Thailand.
    Exhibitions for the events are more than 60 percent sold, including companies such as Alltech, Biomin, Cargill, Dr. Eckel, DSM, Kemin and Novos, which all already reserved their stands. The early bird discount for registration is till available until September 1. 
    The events will be held April 8-10, 2014. Petfood Forum Asia will also be co-located with the shows, taking place April 9, 2014, in Bangkok. 

Feed and Pet Food Joint Conference opens early bird registration

    Registration is now open for the Feed and Pet Food Joint Conference, taking place at the J.W. Marriott in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA, September 24-26.
    Petfood industry members interested in attending the conference may register online by Sunday, August 11 to take advantage of the early bird rate of US$390. Industry suppliers can register to exhibit at the Joint Conference and sign up to sponsor a function or item from the list of "Related Products."

Thursday, May 23, 2013

AFIA names former Pet Food Committee leaders as 'Co-Members of the Year'

    The American Feed Industry Association named Jarrod Kersey, PhD, Nutro Co., and Jason Vickers, P&G Pet Care, as "Co-Members of the Year," at the board of directors' meeting May 14. Both have provided leadership to AFIA’s Pet Food Committee during the last two years, each serving a term as chair. 
    Jarrod Kersey is the director of health sciences and regulatory affairs, Mars Petcare US and Nutro Co. He is responsible for the strategic development of the health sciences and regulatory affairs teams for Mars Petcare US, including oversight of the Pet Health and Nutrition Center at the Regional Innovation Center in Thompson’s Station. Kersey developed a category-leading nutritional strategy centered on canine lifestages, breed size and activity levels. Prior to Mars, Kersey was AFIA’s director of state and regulatory affairs, following a seven-year career with P&G Pet Care in various roles related to regulatory sciences.  
    In 1998, Vickers joined the department of strategic research in the research and development division of the Iams Co. His research focus included the areas of gastrointestinal health, obesity and diabetes as well as the clinical application of innovations within these areas. In 2001, he transferred to the department of regulatory affairs and is currently in the role of section head with responsibilities for North American regulatory compliance. 
    During their times as chair of the Pet Food Committee, both Vickers and Kersey challenged the committee to be proactive in addressing the topic of petfood safety, helping to form the Pet Food Manufacturing Facility Certification Program. “Pet food safety is a noncompetitive issue. Despite their companies being professional competitors, Jarrod and Jason worked together and led the charge, bringing leadership to the issue,” said Joel G. Newman, president and CEO, AFIA.

New Del Monte Meow Mix Facebook app awards cash prizes to users daily

    Petfood maker Del Monte Foods recently launched a Facebook application for its Meow Mix cat food brand. 
    The app allows users to upload a photo of their cat, map out facial features and then watch the cat perform a rendition of the Meow Mix jingle. Those who use the app are entered to win a US$100 prize, awarded daily, and a US$10,000 grand prize. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Pet Food Institute redesigns website for consumers, members

    Pet Food Institute has redesigned its website,, which now features updated, consumer-friendly information, enhanced profiles for PFI members and improved functionality. 
    For the public, the new site includes information on how petfood is made, ingredients that go into it, nutrition petfood provides, safety practices companies must follow and more. New features include petfood myth busters, information on consumer confidence and a video about the petfood making process.
    The Members-Only section features enhanced functionality, with access to industry documents, allows members to manage their profiles and more.

Petfood Forum China 2013 topics and speakers announced

    Petfood Forum China 2013, scheduled for August 23 in Shanghai, will feature industry experts covering the latest research on functional ingredients, protein sources and palatability; information and insights on the Chinese and global petfood markets; a new study on how pet owners choose petfoods; systems to control pathogens and other contaminants in a petfood factory; ways to save energy and ensure safety in drying extruded petfood; and more. Full descriptions and speakers are available here.
    The conference, held at the Shanghai World Expo Exhibition and Convention Center, will also include tabletop exhibits from leading industry suppliers and several networking opportunities, including lunch. It will again be co-located with Pet Fair Asia, one of the leading pet trade shows in China, scheduled for August 22-25.
    Participants who register for Petfood Forum China 2013 by June 15 will save 15% or more.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Nestle unveils solar array at petfood manufacturing facility in Atlanta, Georgia, USA

    Nestle Purina PetCare unveiled the company's largest solar array at its petfood manufacturing facility in Atlanta, Georgia, USA. 
    The solar array, designed and installed by United Renewable Energy, is comprised of nearly 1,900 solar panels, which will produce more than 585,000 kilowatt hours of clean, sustainable energy each year. The energy will be used to power equipment in various areas of the petfood production facility, including processing, packaging and warehouse. 
    The solar array produces enough energy to power nearly 52 average-sized homes annually, or about 5,000 light bulbs for a year. A solar array of this size has a carbon offset that equates to a CO2 emissions reduction of approximately 16 million pounds.
    Nestle Purina purchases its electricity from Georgia Power Company, which derives 7 percent of its total electric energy from renewable sources, including solar, wind and biomass.
    Additionally, Nestle Purina donated US$5,000 to the Douglas County, Georgia, K9 Unit in celebration of the solar array. 

Mintel releases 'Pet Food in Mexico' report

    Mintel Global Market Navigator released a report on "Pet Food in Mexico," with annual year-end market size data, most recently updated in 2012. 
    The report covers packaged, prepared dry and wet food for dogs and cats. It includes data on market size, historical data, socio-economic data for Mexico and industry forecasts. The petfood market report can be purchased online. 

Monday, May 20, 2013

Affinity Petcare enters Brazil petfood market in joint venture with Mogiana

    Affinity Petcare, part of the Spanish petfood manufacturer Agrolimen Group, is forming a new joint venture with Brazil's Mogiana Alimentos SA.
    Affinity Petcare will enter into the Brazilian petfood market with its purchase of a 50 percent stake in Mogiana Foods, a Brazilian animal feed producer. The joint venture is based in Campinas, Brazil, and is comprised of two manufacturing plants, one in Campinas and one in Bastos, Brazil.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Alltech offers live streaming of International Symposium, May 19-22

    Alltech's 29th Annual International Symposium is set to take place May 19-22 in Lexington, Kentucky, USA. For those that are unable to attend in person, the event will have live-streaming and on-demand videos of select presentations, blog posts, photos and more daily on the Symposium Live! Web page. 
    Sessions will be streamed live during the following times: 
    • Monday, May 20: Opening Session at 9:00 a.m. ET, Press Conference at 11:30 a.m. ET
    • Tuesday, May 21: The Food Session at 8:30 a.m. ET
    • Wednesday, May 22: Closing Session at 9:00 a.m. ET
    Resources will be made available in both English and Spanish.

Pet Food Manufacturers Association asks pet owners to help pets lose weight

    The Pet Food Manufacturers Association is asking pet owners in the UK to take part in its "Weigh in Wednesday" campaign, which began May 8, in an effort to encourage pet owners to help their pets lose weight and become healthier.
    The campaign comes after new research from the association shows the mismatch between pet owners' perceptions of their pet's body condition and the reality of it. The campaign encourages pet owners to identify their pet's body condition and then work towards the ideal body condition. Pet owners can chart their pet's progress using specially designed tools and share their experiences on Twitter using the hashtag #weighinweds. The campaign involves all those in the pet industry, including pet owners, petfood manufacturers, groomers and animal welfare groups. 
    According to veterinarian Zara Boland: “The issue of obesity is rapidly reaching a crisis point. Obesity has been linked to health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease, whilst it’s inflammatory effect is known to worsen problems like arthritis. With estimates of up to 50 percent of pets exceeding their ideal body condition and recent reports highlighting that 18.5 million dogs and cats in the UK are regularly fed inappropriate diets, the need for pet owner’s education and positive action is now. Collectively we can achieve far more than working alone.”

Aller Petfood Group reports earnings increase for fiscal 2012

    Aller Petfood Group reported earnings of DKK14 million (US$2.5 million) at the end of fiscal 2012, up from DKK9 million (US$1.6 million) in 2011. 
    The petfood company's success is attributed to strong market share in the private-label market, where the company says it owns 50 percent in Russia. 
    ”We have stuck to our strategy, optimised production, expanded the organisation and improved our sales and performance,” said CEO Henriette Bylling. ”Consumers have become more prudent and appreciate good quality ingredients. Their dogs and cats are part of the family and, just like the rest of the family members, must have a good and nutritious diet. Despite the economic crisis, consumers have become more quality conscious. However, they have found out that they can get high quality at a reasonable price, and this is exactly what we deliver, and it is a major reason for our success."

Thursday, May 16, 2013

New survey looks at pet adopters' petfood brand choices

    Pethealth Inc. published aggregate results for its third online survey of new cat and dog adopters. The April 2013 Adopter Survey revisits and provides an update on the company's first survey on petfood and pet specialty retail purchasing behavior of new pet adopters, published in May 2012.
    The survey aimed to determine the difference in purchasing behavior between those who adopt from an animal welfare organization and those who adopt a pet from the same organization's satellite location within a pet specialty retailer; determine if shelter petfood programs, which feature the distribution of free bags of petfood to new adopters, create loyalty among adopters for those brands, and if animal welfare organizations or pet specialty retailers have a greater impact on that brand's loyalty; and determine the degree to which pet adopters purchase pet supplies and petfood items online.
    The survey found that about 83 percent of pet adoptions took place in animal welfare organizations, nearly unchanged from a year ago. At the point of adoption, 33 percent of pet owners said they were provided a bag of complimentary petfood, 5.2 percent of which said they were subsequently contacted by the petfood company. Of those who received complimentary food, Hill's Science again remained the leader at 45 percent.
    However, 78 percent of respondents indicated that they now purchase a different brand of petfood from what they were provided at the time of adoption. Purina continued to lead as the top food manufacturer with pet adopters, 16.7 percent of whom indicated they feed newly adopted pets Purina Pro Plan or Purina ONE, followed by Science Diet (11.8 percent) and Blue Buffalo (9.4 percent). 
    More than 7,000 pet owners completed the survey. Survey respondents included new adopters of dogs and cats during the 13-month period from March 2012-13. 

De Haan Petfood stops production in the Netherlands after explosion

    Wet petfood manufacturer De Haan Petfood BV has temporarily stopped production as a result of an incident in the petfood production facility in Nieuwkoop, the Netherlands. 
    In the afternoon on May 7, an explosion occurred in one of the retorts in which under-pressure cans are sterilized. One employee was slightly injured in the blast, and other damages and consequences are currently being assessed.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Pet obesity correlated with human obesity, vet says

    Dr. Richard French, DVM, dean of animal studies and Allerton Chair of Animal Health Sciences at Becker College, is urging pet owners to pursue healthy lifestyles in honor of May as National Pet Month. The bond between human owners and their pets may affect the health of both, he says, especially for health concerns associated with obesity.
    "In the veterinary sciences field, we have observed that the epidemic of overweight humans is being mirrored in the population of pet cats and dogs," says French. "According to the US Food and Drug Administration's Center for Veterinary Medicine, obesity is just as threatening to the animals as it is to their owners."
    Diseases being diagnosed in obese pets "are eerily similar to those reported for people," according to the center, citing an annual study by the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention. Obesity is a leading epidemic in the US for both humans and pets, with more than two-thirds (68.8 percent) of adults considered overweight or obese, and 53 percent of adult dogs and 55 percent of cats considered overweight or obese by their veterinarian, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association. Veterinarians say this equates to more than 100 million pets. 
    "Pets are family members, and we often treat them as loved ones, with all the benefits of a great home life. But our pets are, sadly, falling victim to one of the biggest health issues facing their human owners," French says.
    A large part of the problem with pet obesity is the "fat pet gap," the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention says, because many owners are unaware that their pets are overweight. In many cases, this correlates to obesity in people, too.
    "When we see dogs that are overweight, we essentially should see a child that's at risk for excess weight," says French. "Think about the lifestyles of many of our young people, and then we can readily see how their pets are emulating those lifestyles. If a child is playing video games all day, the dog isn't outside playing. Rather, the pet is sitting at her feet or on the sofa. If the child is lying around snacking on high-calorie treats, chances are the dog is sharing in those same excess calories—and is also likely to get something from the dinner table."

Mars Petcare to expand German petfood production facility

    Petfood maker Mars Petcare's German subsidiary will invest €17.4 million (US$22.8 million) in its plant in Verden an der Aller, Germany. 
    The company says the money will be spent to expand petfood production facilities that manufacture single-serve pouches. Investments will be made in new filling systems, autoclaves, high-bay storage systems and a new packing line. Capacity is expected to increase by more than 10 percent.
    The expansion will also create 28 new jobs. The new facility is expected to be finished in January 2014. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Court rules FDA failed to comply with FSMA rulemaking schedule

    On April 22, a Federal Court sided with two nonprofit organizations when it ruled that the US Food and Drug Administration failed to comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act's mandatory rulemaking schedule.
    After failing to meet a July 2012 deadline that required FDA to promulgate seven new regulations covering extensive food safety topics, the Center for Food Safety and the Center for Environmental Health filed a complaint against FDA in the US Federal District Court for Northern California.
    In the complaint, the two groups alleged that FDA had unlawfully delayed issuance of the new rules and asked for relief. FDA argued that it has been working diligently on the regulations and broke no law.
    However, according to the court's ruling: "FDA is correct that the purpose of ensuring food safety will not be served by the issuance of regulations that are insufficiently considered, based on a timetable that is unconnected to the magnitude of the task set by Congress.” Noting that any schedule the Court were to set “will necessarily be arbitrary,” the Court ordered the parties “to meet and confer” and to submit to the Court “a joint written statement setting forth proposed deadlines” by which the regulations will be issued by May 20.
    Parties may submit written comments to the proposed rules up to May 16. 

Five packaging companies to form one business

    Five packaging companies in North America and Europe announced their intent to combine and operate as one global company, under the name Exopack Holdings Sarl, a Luxembourg-based company. The combined business will have 63 plants and 8,650 employees.
    Joining Exopack, a US-based producer of flexible paper and plastic packaging, will be four Europe-based companies: Britton Group, a flexible plastic packaging manufacturer; PACCOR, a rigid plastic packaging company; Kobusch, a producer of tailor-made flexible and rigid packaging systems; and Paragon Print & Packaging, a provider of private-label packaging solutions. 
    The combined company will be led by Jack Knott, who will serve as CEO; along with Mike Alger, chief financial officer; Dieter Bergner, CEO of PACCOR (Global Rigid business); and Michael Cronin, CEO of the Global Flexibles business.
    “By joining together to form this new entity, we will be better able to serve the needs of our global customers through a manufacturing base spanning North America, Europe, the Middle East and China that enhances our ability to deliver outstanding service,” said Knott. “The larger scale will enable us to accelerate the development and commercialization of new and differentiated products that offer our customers a competitive advantage.” 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Hill's forms petfood distribution network to aid pets during emergencies

    Hill's Pet Nutrition has established a Disaster Relief Network through the Hill's Food, Shelter & Love program, which will enable Hill's to quickly deploy petfood resources in case of an emergency. 
    The Network consists of nearly 100 participating shelters across the US that Hill's can coordinate with to distribute emergency food supplies to pets in need.
    "The Hill's Disaster Relief Network formalizes the work Hill's has done with shelters throughout the country. Together, we can respond as quickly as possible when animals and their communities are impacted by disaster across the country. We are very proud of our strong relationships with shelters. When disasters happen, Hill's is ready to respond with emergency food shipments within hours," said Kostas Kontopanos, president of Hill's Pet Nutrition US.
    Hill's is also working to educate pet owners on what they can do to help keep pets safe and healthy when a disaster hits, leading up to National Animal Disaster Preparedness Day, May 11. 
    "Because owners have such strong bonds with their pets, we want to encourage pet parents to think about how their pets factor into their evacuation plans. Taking precautionary steps can help avoid delays in the event of an emergency," said Dr. Dan Aja, director of US professional and veterinary affairs at Hill's. 
    Hill's advises pet owners to take the following steps to prepare their pet for an emergency:
    • Ensure your pet can be identified by either a microchip or collar ID tag, with updated contact information.
    • Prepare an emergency box of pet supplies that is readily accessible in the event of an evacuation. Emergency kits should include: first aid supplies and guide book; a three-day supply of petfood in a waterproof container and bottled water; a safety harness and leash; waste clean-up supplies; medications and medical records; a contact list of veterinarian and pet care organizations; information on your pet's feeding routine and any behavioral issues; comfort toys; and a blanket.
    • Display a pet rescue decal with veterinarian contact information on your front door or window to let first responders know there is a pet in the house.
    • Identify a location to take your pet if you need to leave the immediate area – keep in mind that disaster shelters for people may not be able to shelter pets.
    • If you need to evacuate, consider taking a pet carrier or crate if possible for transport and safe-keeping.
    • Carry a good picture of your pet with you in the event of separation during evacuation. Learn where your pet likes to hide in your house because pets may hide if they are scared.

    To request assistance during an emergency, shelters can contact Hill's at 

Petcurean sponsors film featuring dogs, cats at Tribeca Film Festival

    Canadian petfood brand Petcurean commissioned director, Keith Hopkin, to create a film featuring dogs and cats for Tribeca Film Festival in New York, USA.
    Scenes within the film, shot in upstate New York and Southern California, USA, feature dogs and cats running through snow-covered farm fields and trails, swimming and diving into pools, playing and chasing birds. 
    Hopkin said he aimed to "capture, in a simple and pure way, the almost magical effect our pets can have on us by helping us see even small things from an entirely new perspective."
    Petcurean also created a Facebook page where consumers are encouraged to share stories, films and videos related to how they “savor every moment” with their pets. Entries with the most votes will be rewarded prizes, including being featured in a Petcurean ad campaign, a GoPro camera kit, and a year’s supply of Petcurean dog or cat food.

Friday, May 10, 2013

H.H. Backer renames fall pet industry show as Total Pet Expo

    Trade show organizer H.H. Backer Associates announced several changes to its annual autumn pet industry show in Chicago.
    Backer says the show will have new attractions, a fresh graphic look and a new name, Backer's Total Pet Expo. The event will be held on September 20-22 at the Donald E. Stephens Convention Center in Rosemont, Illinois, USA. It will feature more than 500 exhibitors on two floors. Backer's spring trade show, April 9-11, 2014, in Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA, will also be renamed Total Pet Expo.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Mars Veterinary develops at-home dog breed identification kit

    Mars Veterinary, which specializes in pet care and canine genetic breed identification, has developed a 3-in-1 do-it-yourself dog DNA test that allows owners to identify the breeds that make up their mixed-breed dog.
    The Wisdom Panel 2.0 from Mars Veterinary tests for more than 200 dog breeds and varieties, including all American Kennel Club registered breeds. Pet owners can use a cheek swab to collect DNA and mail back the sample in a pre-paid package. The test results help answer questions about their dog's appearance, behaviors, wellness needs and more.

Alltech Analytical Services Laboratory analyzes 1,000th feed sample

    The Analytical Services Laboratory powered by Alltech, established in September 2012, recently processed their 1,000th feed sample. The lab, which utilizes LC-MS/MS analytical technology, has allowed Alltech to gain valuable insights into mycotoxin levels and trends globally.
    “The most significant aspect of this milestone is the quality of data we have accumulated. Virtually 100 percent of the feed samples analyzed worldwide contain multiple mycotoxins. Individual mycotoxin levels detected by methods with less specificity and sensitivity than the technologies we use may not always identify the source of poor animal health,” said Steve Mobley, manager of the Analytical Services Laboratory.
    Alltech’s 37+ Program provides a tailored, species-specific risk assessment of the expected impact on animal performance based on the mycotoxins that are found during analysis. It then recommends a mitigation strategy through balanced nutrition, feed management and the addition of functional carbohydrates.
    “However, the cumulative, additive and/or synergistic effects of multiple mycotoxins in the diet, regardless of guideline or regulatory levels, can result in mycotoxicosis symptoms and detrimental erosion of animal productivity,” said Dr. Max Hawkins, Alltech Mycotoxin Management Team. “The need to detect and quantify multiple mycotoxins at low levels should be the industry’s key concern and, from the tremendous response to Alltech’s 37+ Program, I believe the industry is taking heed.”
    An entire track will be dedicated to mycotoxins at GLIMPSE 2020: the 29th Annual Alltech International Symposium in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, May 19-22.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

IBISWorld offers report on UK petfood stores, garden supply market

    The UK garden supply and petfood stores industry has faced a number of factors over the past five years that caused the industry's revenue to fall, according to IBISWorld's research report.
    The report says sustained recessionary economic conditions have led to a significant decrease in disposable income for consumers, who subsequently reduced discretionary purchases. Additionally, pet owners faced with financial restrictions and the rising costs of utilities, food and transportation were forced to reduce expenditure on pet supplies or give up their pets entirely. 
    Over the five years through 2013-14, the report estimates industry revenue to be decreasing at a compound annual rate of 3.3 percent. 
    “The industry's poor performance has been mitigated by consumers with a great affection for their pets, and unwilling to cut back on pet expenditure," says IBISWorld industry analyst Temitope Onabanjo.
    The industry is expected to recovery steadily and slowly over the next five years in line with the eventual recovery of the UK economy. The full report can be purchased online.

Registration opens for Petfood Forum China 2013

    Registration is now available for Petfood Forum China 2013, scheduled for August 23 at the Shanghai World Expo Exhibition and Conference Center. Participants who register by June 15 will save more than 15%.
    Registration is available in Chinese language and RMB payment and also in English and US dollars. Each registration includes all conference sessions, access to the Petfood Forum China tabletop exhibits, two coffee breaks and a generous buffet lunch.
    Petfood Forum China premiered as the first conference of its kind for the Chinese petfood industry in October 2012. The 2013 edition will feature industry experts speaking on topics such as the Chinese and global petfood markets; the latest research on functional ingredients and petfood palatability; a new study on how pet owners choose petfoods; systems to control pathogens in a petfood factory; ways to save energy and ensure safety in drying extruded petfood; and more.
    Petfood Forum China 2013 will again be co-located with Pet Fair Asia, one of the largest trade shows for the pet industry in China.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

SuperZoo University to feature animal wellness, business development, technology courses

    SuperZoo, the national show for pet retailers, will take place July 23-25 in Las Vegas, Nevada, USA, offering a number of resources for companies, including an enhanced SuperZoo University
    SuperZoo University is an educational program for pet retailers, which offers seminars on marketing trends and technologies, animal wellness education, hands-on grooming demonstrations and more. The curriculum is divided into three tracks: Business Development, Animal Wellness and Technology. The School of Animal Wellness will feature doctors from Horn discussing animal species, new feeds and other health issues, in addition to an "ask the expert" panel session on pet nutrition.
    Other new classes in the tracks include: Mystery Shopping: Pull Out the Microscope for Your Pet Business, What Women Want in Your Store, Search Engine 101 and Marketing Bootcamp.
    SuperZoo will also feature a new Concept Store, an environment where attendees can see merchandising best practices and new technologies put to use in retail displays and other demonstrations. 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Iams petfood brand campaign reminds owners that pets aren't vegetarians

    Petfood company Procter & Gamble recently relaunched its Iams ProActive Health premium dry dog and cat food brands. This includes "new marketing messages that remind pet owners that their dogs and cats are not vegetarians," according to Jon Moeller, chief financial officer of P&G. 
    Moeller said some petfoods add plant proteins like gluten, but Iams' petfoods contain 50 percent more animal protein than comparable products and no added gluten.
    The relaunch also includes new packaging sizes to target consumers' preferred price points. 
    Additionally, several new products will be launched over the coming months. Iams' So Good brand will be its first in the mid-priced dry dog food category, containing ingredients like chicken, fruits and vegetables, but free of dyes, added sugar and and artificial preservatives. Iams Woof Delights will be launched to offer consumers a choice of wet dog food, free of fillers, artificial flavors and added gluten.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Purina ONE dog food, Dognition to study canine intelligence

    Purina ONE brand dog food is working with Dognition, the science-based service that enhances relationships between dogs and their owners, to share the Dognition Experience with Purina customers, contribute to canine research and develop educational content. 
    The Dognition Experience includes a range of services and benefits for dog owners, including a series of interactive games to play with their dogs, each designed to assess key dimensions of intelligence: empathy, communication, cunning, memory and reasoning. The games are based of research conducted by Dognition chief science officer, Dr. Brian Hare, director of Duke University's Canine Cognition Center. 
    Through the Dognition Experience, Purina ONE customers will receive a US$20-off discount to participate in a "citizen science" undertaking. Participants will contribute to the collection of data that could lead to discoveries that benefit dogs, in addition to learning about the cognitive profiles of their own dog. 
    “Research indicates that there are different types of animal intelligence,” said Dr. Hare. “One very effective way to measure these types of intelligence is through carefully constructed cognitive game play. When we can compare the results of those games to other dogs, we can discover each dog’s special genius.”
    The data will be aggregated and evaluated by the Dognition Scientific Advisory Board, which is made up of leading canine cognition researchers. The data will make it possible to examine individual differences in behavior and intelligence as it relates to breed, age, sex, training history and a range of other important variables. 
    “While traditional definitions of intelligence have applied a linear approach – you’re either smart or you’re not – cognitive science has shown that there are many types of intelligence, including memory, communication and reasoning,” said Dr. Hare. “We’ve discovered that dogs use specific strategies that have made them among the most successful animals on the planet. Today we can take that broad understanding and help each individual owner uncover the special genius that their individual dog possesses.” 

Thursday, May 2, 2013

FDA budget increase proposed for implementation of FSMA

    President Barack Obama has requested US$4.7 billion for the US Food and Drug Administration's budget for implementing and managing the Food Safety Modernization Act
    The request in his fiscal 2014 budget is an increase of US$295.8 million from FDA's 2012 budget. Of the funds requested, 94 percent would come from user fees, including current fees for food facility registration and inspection, and inspection of food importers, as well as a proposed fee to support FDA's food contact substance notification program, which would generate US$4.458 million. The remaining portion would be funded through FDA's budget authority. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Aflatoxin a concern for petfood industry in summer, experts say

    Grain experts say a toxic mold residue that attacked the 2012 US corn crop may become even more problematic this summer and fall as farmers blend off tainted corn supplies from storage. This is a concern in the petfood industry as manufacturers work to avoid contamination in their final products and minimize petfood recalls due to aflatoxin
    "As we get into summer, you are going to see the worst of it," said Doug Bartlett, co-owner of advisory company Midwest Farm Services. "We have tight corn supplies and when we get down to the nitty gritty, there is going to be a lot of the aflatoxin left over, and it will have to be blended off into the new crop." 
    According to Charles Hurburgh, agricultural engineering professor at Iowa State University who specializes in grain quality, aflatoxin is currently a significant concern in the US from eastern Kansas across northern Missouri, up to central and southern Illinois. As temperatures rise in the spring, the mold responsible for causing aflatoxin can be spread inside grain storage bins, which could create a second round of problems after the initial outbreak when crops are harvested. 
    "We've already seen some flourishing of the molds that can produce aflatoxin," said Max Hawkins, a nutritionist with Alltech. "Because corn is in short supply, everybody wants to get every kernel, everything they can out of the bin. As the bin is emptied, those damaged kernels tend to concentrate in the bottom area....There is ample aflatoxin present in many, many storage facilities."