Ensuring pet care packaging is sustainable
Manufacturers of pet food products are looking at innovative new product packaging designs and materials to meet sustainability targets, while continuing to ensure the safety and freshness of the food. Nicola McNey, Sales Manager at packaging specialist DS Smith UK, reveals how pet firms can achieve their future goals...
Article by Nicola McNey, Sales Manager and Segment Specialist, DS Smith UK
Removing the need for single-use plastics is one of the hot topics of 2018. In the UK, the Government has made pledges to reduce the use of plastics, a move which has seen retailers and supermarkets making commitments to cut use in-store. With this in mind, manufacturers of pet food products are looking at innovative new product packaging designs and materials to meet sustainability targets, while continuing to ensure the safety and freshness of the food.
Making sustainable changes to a pack design, such as reducing the materials used or trialling a different format, can reverberate throughout the supply chain.
For pet food brands, these incremental improvements can equate to substantial cost and carbon savings, greater efficiencies, improved environmental performance and a key competitive advantage as consumers are drawn to more environmentally-conscious brands.
In fact, 55% of global consumers will pay more for products or services that put social and environmental issues at the heart of their strategy.
With the UK pet care market worth £4.5 billion and predicted to grow to £4.7 billion by 2022, ensuring packaging is high-quality, impactful and sustainable is essential for brands looking to stand out in the increasingly competitive marketplace.
DS Smith has a long history of working with leading brands in the pet food sector, to ensure their packaging has an informed design that stands out to shoppers while using the least amount of material to protect the product in the supply chain.
Whether pet products are presented to shoppers on-shelf or ordered direct to their homes, packaging is the first physical interaction the shopper has with a brand and therefore, a key way in which pet care brands will be assessed for their environmental impact.
Well-designed packaging that is optimally-sized helps support sales and creates efficiencies in the supply chain. Waste can be removed, space used effectively and the right pack format can drive availability and sales. For pet food brands, these efficiencies can quickly add up to profit, as well as supporting sustainability credentials.
In addition, the use of corrugated packaging can play a valuable role in reaching sustainability targets. It is fully recyclable, frequently made from recycled papers, has a high strength-to-weight ratio, is versatile in design, and is the perfect canvas for high-quality printing to reflect the unique identity of pet food brands, ensuring they stand out from the competition.
At DS Smith, our sustainable approach to packaging is long-established and effective. Currently the fibres we use in packaging can go from box to box within 14 days via our circular model. This means corrugated boxes are made, used, collected, recycled, and made back into boxes again in as little as two weeks.
The nature of the material means it is environmentally sound. Packaging specifications should reflect the least amount of material necessary to perform through the packaging process and protect the product right through to point of sale to make sure it arrives in a condition shoppers expect.
The print capabilities of corrugated also enable key labelling information to be clearly relayed, such as details on the product’s ingredients and the materials used in the packaging. This is particularly important for brands seeking cut-through.
Euromonitor found there is a desire from consumers for clear communication on the source and ingredients of pet food, as well the brand’s overall positive contribution to the environment. With packaging in store having less than two seconds to capture a shopper’s attention, it’s essential pet food brands get this right.
Pets are increasingly seen as an integral part of their owners’ lives – 99% viewing their pet as ‘part of the family’ – and for many, every product purchased has a deep-rooted emotional connection to their pet. As such, consumers have an invested interest in the products they chose for their animals. Brands need to ensure that both the quality of the pet food and its packaging reflects this sentiment and uses emotive triggers through the language and graphics used.
Pet food shoppers increasingly expect brands to be playing an active role in the packaging debate, choosing alternative solutions to non-recyclable materials. Similarly, the EU has set a target to reuse and recycle a minimum of 65% of packaging by 2025, and this rises to 70% by 2030.
There is currently a gap here, and much more that brands can be doing to increase impact at the moment of truth with the shopper, while also gaining supply chain savings and meeting a range of targets to meet environmental business objectives.
For more information on how DS Smith can support your brand’s packaging, please get in touch with one of our packaging experts here: https://www.dssmith.com/petcare-uk
Vitalin Super Premium Pet Food has introduced four new products to its dog food range, including:
- Luxury Dog Treats with 60% fresh British duck
- Adult Fresh Meat with 60% British chicken
- Adult Small Breed with 26% British chicken
- 85% Fresh Chicken Pate and 80% Fresh Tuna Pate
Customer demand has been the driving force behind Adult Small Breed as it has been specifically developed to provide optimum nutrition for small breeds, and Adult Fresh Meat has been manufactured to cater for dogs with more active lifestyles.
To complement their range of hypoallergenic, super premium dry dog foods, they have also developed freshly prepared and complete pate recipes, Fresh Chicken Pate and Fresh Tuna Pate. These only use the finest British sourced ingredients and are gently steam cooked to create a meal of the highest quality.
Due to Vitalin’s continuous commitment to the environment, the new Pate range has been packaged in Tetra Pak cartons, which are not just easy to open and quick to reseal for storage in your fridge, they are also sourced from sustainable forestry and are 100% recyclable.
National Sales Manager, David Tinker said: “We’re delighted to introduce four additional dog food products to our range.
"As well as offering our customers a wider range of options for their best friends, we’ve also made the decision to use Tetra Pak with our Pate range as part of our commitment to reduce our carbon footprint and environmental impact, and align ourselves with the growing consumer demand for manufacturers to become more sustainable.”
To keep up to date with all Vitalin products, please visit www.vitalinpetfood.co.uk.
Royal Canin introduces new look packaging to Breed range
Over the last two years, Royal Canin has successfully integrated a new look and feel to its packaging, accompanied by a revamped brand image supported by striking black and white imagery that can be seen throughout their in-store and external campaigns...
Over the last two years, Royal Canin has successfully integrated a new look and feel to its packaging, accompanied by a revamped brand image supported by striking black and white imagery that can be seen throughout their in-store and external campaigns.
The final step in Royal Canin’s transformation is coming to fruition in November, welcoming the final instalment of new look packaging to the popular Breed Health Nutrition range – with the inclusion of re-sealable zip lock technology across all bags.
The UK’s pure breed canine population is growing strongly, with an increase of seven per cent pure breed registrations in 2017 over 2016 according to Kennel Club breed registration data. Customers with pure breed dogs spend around 30 per cent more on dog food, and over 19 per cent more on the dog category than the average dog food shopper.
Translated into the specialist pet trade, this means that Breed food shoppers visit stores more often, and have a higher basket spend than the average customer.
Breed Health Nutrition Junior products will be re-named PUPPY, with the inclusion of the blue tear drop on the packaging, linking nicely with the Size Health Nutrition PUPPY products that launched earlier in the year.
Royal Canin Retail Marketing Manager Ben Hurley says: “Over the past two years there has been a lot of work to develop and test the look and feel of our packaging – especially as we are a brand that offers such a diverse and tailored product portfolio. It’s really exciting to be able to align all of our ranges to aid customer navigation.”
For more information about the launch or to discover how Royal Canin can support your business, please contact your Royal Canin Business Manager or call 0845 606 9980 to speak to a member of our dedicated customer service team.
Radio Systems Corporation – owner of PetSafe Brand and SportDOG Brand – has announced the acquisition of Motivation Design LLC, makers of Kurgo pet products.
Based in Minnesota, USA, Kurgo has a portfolio of innovative, highly functional and easy-to-use pet travel products that allow families and pets to experience outdoor travel and adventure together.
Kurgo’s outside-the-home product line is positioned to capture the active lifestyle pet goods market which is a large category with significant growth potential.
“The acquisition of Kurgo will enable us to expand our reach to customers seeking adventure outside their home,” said Angela Critchley, International Marketing Director of Radio Systems Corporation.
“Our customers tend to focus on spending more quality time with their pets, which includes bringing their dog on outdoor adventures with them.
"The Kurgo product portfolio helps to keep dogs safe during outdoor excursions. This acquisition will enable us accelerate the expansion of our travel and access category which we began in 2017 with the acquisition of Solvit and help us better serve our customers.
"Kurgo’s passion for adventure pet products is also in sync with the PetSafe® Brand mission to help pets and their owners live happy lives together.”
Kurgo co-founder Gordie Spater said: “We are excited about this new chapter for Kurgo products. We take our work personally and each product we create solves a real need to help more people enjoy time outside their house engaged with their dog.
"We are proud of the fact that our gear helps dogs to be a central part of family adventures and outdoor travel. With the expanded scale of Radio Systems Corporation, we’re looking forward to seeing how Kurgo products will impact more families’ lives.”
Popular Kurgo products include products for traveling in the car with your dog such as car seat covers, crash-tested harnesses, booster seats and backseat barriers as well as products to make outdoor excursions a success such as active harnesses, backpacks for dogs, dog life jackets, leads and collars.
Kurgo was represented in this transaction by Cascadia Capital LLC, an investment bank serving middle market clients globally.
Pet food supplier Barking Heads has won a major honour in the 2018 DogFriendly Awards. The company picked the Large Employer Award with the commendation: “Great food, open and honest ingredients.“
Barking Heads was also described as being “a great place to work and very dog friendly.”
The Pet Shed in Brighton picked up the Best Pet Shop Award thanks to comments like: “Really lovely little & local pet shop. They go out of their way to provide a good service.“
Malton in North Yorkshire was voted Best Dog Friendly Town while The Dog House in London (below) won the Grooming Award.
The DogFriendly Awards, in association with the Kennel Club, are an opportunity to recognise and reward dog friendly places and pet businesses that go the extra mile for the benefit of the UK’s 9.4 million dogs
Winners and finalists were announced at the Awards ceremony at The ExCel Centre, London, on Saturday.
A full list of the winners can be viewed by clicking here
Lily's Kitchen enhances its ethical credentials
Lily’s Kitchen has been named as the UK’s top rated ethical pet food company for the 10th year running by ethical consumer comparison company The Good Shopping Guide. Henrietta Morrison, founder of Lily’s Kitchen, comments: “From the very beginning, our aim has been to give consumers a choice in what they feed their pets as well as what the food is packaged in...
Lily’s Kitchen has been named as the UK’s top rated ethical pet food company for the 10th year running by ethical consumer comparison company The Good Shopping Guide, the world’s best-selling ethical shopping reference book and website, covering areas such as environment, animal welfare, treatment of people amongst many others.
Lily’s Kitchen achieved the top index score of 100, which highlights the company’s continued commitment to ethical behaviour, responsible corporate governance and employee integrity.
Henrietta Morrison, founder of Lily’s Kitchen, comments: “From the very beginning, our aim has been to give consumers a choice in what they feed their pets as well as what the food is packaged in.
"We were the first pet food company to use compostable bags for our dry food, printed with vegetable dyes…and although they look quite crumply, our consumers love the fact that they will not be heading to landfill.
"Our wet food packaging is also recyclable, so pet parents know they’re doing well for their pet and doing well for the planet too.
“I was one of those people who had no idea that single serve cat and dog pouches take several lifetimes to break down and end up doing terrible harm to the environment by going into landfill in enormous quantities.
"In the UK alone, in one year, almost 9 billion cat pouches go into landfill. It’s brilliant that people are now realizing this and actively seeking alternative packaging for their pets.”
Commenting on the accolade, Kat Alexander from The Good Shopping Guide said: “Once again, we are very pleased that Lily’s Kitchen remains as one of our top-ranking Ethical Accreditation members and continues to perform so well in our ethical research rankings. We look forward to continuing to work with them and promote Lily’s Kitchen as an ethical choice to our dedicated audience of ethical shoppers.”
When compiling this year's list, The Good Shopping Guide independently assessed the company’s competency in ethics and compliance; culture of ethics; leadership, innovation and reputation; corporate responsibility and governance.
Three years ago, Lily’s Kitchen became a founding member of B Corp UK - an organisation which begun in the US (Etsy and Patagonia are among the founding members) as a collection of companies united in their desire to use business as a force for good. Lily’s Kitchen is still the only pet food company to be a certified B Corp. It has been ethically minded since day one, and its status as a B Corp UK founder member goes to underline that commitment.
Individually, ‘B Corps’ as they are known, meet the highest standards of performance and are transparent and accountable in their business operations. Member companies are encouraged to use their individual and collective power to help solve social and environmental problems.
Ensuring the business has a positive impact on society and the planet is at the heart of all Lily’s Kitchen does, and with their simple but meaningful mission - dedicated to providing naturally nutritious food for pets, and a pledge to tread carefully on the planet and actively engage with the community - Lily’s Kitchen heads towards its 11th year with a success to match its ambitions.
Natures Menu receives food safety recognition
Natures Menu is the first raw pet food brand to gain national accreditation from Safe and Legal Supply Approval (SALSA), the leading food safety certification scheme for the UK’s small food and drink producers...
Natures Menu is the first raw pet food brand to gain national accreditation from Safe and Legal Supply Approval (SALSA), the leading food safety certification scheme for the UK’s small food and drink producers.
Developed by experienced food safety experts, SALSA completed an in-depth audit whereby Natures Menu had to display its ability to produce safe and legal food in order to be awarded the certification. As an approved SALSA supplier, Natures Menu showcased that it was able to operate to standards recognised and accepted across the industry and exceed the minimum levels expected by enforcement authorities.
During the day long inspection, Natures Menu provided explanations of each process, initiated control measures and completed a rigorous interrogation of management systems, policies, procedures, controls and work instructions.
Richard Hindley, Technical Manager at Natures Menu, said: “The SALSA accreditation is a fantastic achievement for Natures Menu and we are extremely pleased to have joined the scheme. It’s widely recognised by both retailers and food service providers, demonstrating that as a business we’re able to demonstrate full legal and quality compliance. We would like to thank all the team for their tireless commitment and hard work in helping us to achieve this certification.”
SALSA is a non-profit making venture between the National Farmers Union, the Food and Drink Federation, British Hospitality Association and the British Retail Consortium representing the UK Food Chain and is a scheme operated by the Institute of Food Science and Technology.
Natures Menu specialises in raw dog and cat food made with fully-traceable quality meats and fish, blended vegetables, fruits and healthy carbohydrates, and uses British suppliers and ethical product sources wherever possible.
Employing over 200 people and trading with 26 countries around the world, Natures Menu products, are all DEFRA approved and developed with vets. With a vast range including raw meaty bones to natural treats, as well as cans and pouches, Natures Menu aims to satisfy the nutritional needs of pets and provide them with a healthy diet that’s packed full of pure, natural goodness.
Retailers wanting to find out more information about Natures Menu and their range can email firstname.lastname@example.org, phone 0800 0183770 or visit www.naturesmenu.co.uk.
By registering for a trade account, retailers can gain access to hassle-free online ordering, great value freezer deals and point of sale, plus free training and the option to become a qualified Raw Advisor.
For more information about Natures Menu please visit www.naturesmenu.co.uk
Veterinary reveal of new Indoor Rabbit Food met with positive reception
The first veterinary reveal of Burgess Excel Indoor Rabbit nuggets was met with a positive reception at the BNVA 2018 Nursing Congress in Telford. This new complementary feed is the first commercial pet food to be developed specifically to meet the nutritional needs of rabbits living indoors...
The first veterinary reveal of Burgess Excel Indoor Rabbit nuggets was met with a positive reception at the BNVA 2018 Nursing Congress in Telford. This new complementary feed is the first commercial pet food to be developed specifically to meet the nutritional needs of rabbits living indoors.
The new range was showcased alongside Burgess Excel’s DualCare Recovery Feed and Long Stem Feeding Hay products. 50 goody bags full of Excel products and useful information were handed out to veterinary nurses each day from the Burgess Pet Care stand.
Alex Thorne, Senior Brand Manager at Burgess Pet Care, said: “The number of rabbits kept indoors is increasing so Burgess Excel Indoor Rabbit nuggets have been carefully formulated to meet the specific nutritional needs of these animals, including L- Carnitine to help maintain a healthy weight.
“This specially formulated food can be introduced to your rabbits’ diet as part of the Burgess Excel Feeding Plan, with a healthy diet consisting of between 85–90% of high-quality feeding hay.”
Research continues to show a rise in the number of rabbits living indoors. Burgess Excel Indoor Rabbit nuggets have been specially formulated with Vitamin D and L-Carnitine to support healthy skin, and bones and help rabbits maintain a healthy weight, along with prebiotics to support digestive function.
The release of this new food is part of Burgess Pet Care’s continued commitment to raising awareness around the specific nutritional needs of pets, ensuring the veterinary sector and retailers are able to supply rabbit owners with high-quality foods that support the health and wellbeing of small animals.
Burgess Excel’s DualCare Recovery Diet, a complementary feed that’s suitable for sick or recuperating guinea pigs and rabbits, was also shown to stand attendees. Originally introduced to the Excel range to ensure veterinary professionals and rabbit owners have access to a high quality and affordable recovery feed, DualCare can be fed in its dry form or watered down into a paste and fed using a wide tipped syringe.
It is one of the most affordable and highly recommended recovery feeds, containing all the necessary nutrients, vitamins and minerals to help support and meet increased requirements during times of stress and recovery.
Veterinary professionals looking to learn more about the Excel Feeding Plan and the support available to them can get in touch with Burgess directly by emailing email@example.com.
Burgess looks forward to announcing the timings and theme of next year’s Rabbit Awareness Week campaign at a later date, as well as a schedule of CPD shows in partnership with RWAF.
YuMOVE will sponsor ITV’s ‘For the Love of Dogs’
Lintbells has announced that its flagship brand YuMOVE will sponsor ITV’s ‘For the Love of Dogs’. One of the nation’s best loved programmes, it is watched by 18% of the UK’s adult population and will help raise awareness of joint health, bringing the role of pet supplements to the attention of millions of pet owners...
Lintbells has announced that its flagship brand YuMOVE will sponsor ITV’s ‘For the Love of Dogs’. One of the nation’s best loved programmes, it is watched by 18% of the UK’s adult population and will help raise awareness of joint health, bringing the role of pet supplements to the attention of millions of pet owners.
The series starts on 31st October and runs for eight weeks, with an hour-long Christmas special. It’s predicted that over the series, in excess of 20 million people will see Lintbells’ message which highlights the benefits of a joint supplement for pets and owners.
YuMOVE is the UK’s No.1 veterinary joint supplement* and the demand for pet supplements worldwide is anticipated to continue to grow at around 5% year on year.1,2 Dog owners, who really relate to the TV series, are most likely to give supplements as this represents the biggest sector of the supplements market.2
It’s a segment that retailers can develop which offers significant opportunity to make guided recommendations and enjoy repeat sales. The Lintbells range of supplements is also completely natural – a category that continues to show strong growth and play a leading role in pet owner decision making.
Lintbells Brand Manager, Gemma Cunningham, says the company is really excited to be sponsoring the show and helping to reach people who are passionate about pets,
“Being on prime-time TV is a fantastic opportunity for the YuMOVE brand and we’re even happier that we have the chance to help more pet owners to care for their pet’s joints.”
Gemma believes that retailers will be able to benefit from the high-profile sponsorship.
“This year we developed Mobility Matters support materials specifically for the trade, following the success of the initiative in the veterinary channel. This will help retailers to better support customers who have dogs with stiff joints. Combined with an increase in awareness, there’s a lot of potential here to establish expert credentials, and improve pet welfare.”
Talking of the impact on customers, she continued: “This is a group of people who love dogs just as much as we do and we hope that this sponsorship will help them think about their pet’s mobility and not just accept stiff joints as part of ageing.”
Pet lovers can watch the new series of ‘For the Love of Dogs’ on ITV from 31st October at 8pm. Retailers can contact Terri-Ann Rowe on 07720 825298 or visit www.lintbellsvet.com to access the Mobility Matters support materials or to find out more about YuMOVE and Lintbells supplement range.
*Kynetic VetTrak sales data, MAT values (September 2018)
More than 200 puppies across the country have got off to a ‘paw’some start in life by receiving an exclusive ‘Puppy School Welcome Box’ from Natures Menu and Puppy School.
The ‘Puppy School Welcome Box’ is full of advice, money-off vouchers and samples from Natures Menu and its new premium brand True Instinct.
The box is the result of the raw and natural pet food expert’s successful partnership with Puppy School. Offering all the information that new puppy parents need, each time someone signs up to Puppy School, they’ll get their paws on one!
Sent direct from Nature Menu’s state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Snetterton, the packs include a letter to welcome the pooches and their owners, the do’s and don’ts of raw feeding and limited money-off vouchers, plus lots of samples from the Natures Menu and True Instinct range.
Over 200 boxes have already been gratefully received with customers sharing positive feedback, with their puppies lapping up the goodies they’ve been sent!
The Puppy School training programme is ideal for any new owners looking to teach their young pup all the obedience basics to them a good foundation for life. Pet parents can simply search for a training class near them and sign-up to the six-week block of classes with one of Puppy School’s 140 tutors to receive the ‘Puppy School Welcome Box’. As well as receiving obedience training, owners can also expect to get advice on responsible raw feeding and how to give their pups the best diet as they grow into dog-hood.
Craig Taylor, Managing Director at Natures Menu said: “We’re delighted to see that the first ever ‘Puppy School Welcome Box’ has gone down a storm with pet parents and their puppies. The box is proving to be extremely popular with more people than ever signing up to Puppy School in one week.
“We want to make sure that the newest addition to the family gets off to the best start in life and give owners a helping hand as it can be daunting getting a new pup. The new box is the result of a successful two-year partnership with Puppy School and we’re thrilled to be joining forces with the group once again and to be educating pet parents on getting their puppy off to a flying start.”
Gwen Bailey, Founder of Puppy School, said: “The new ‘Puppy School Welcome Box’ has proved extremely popular and we are delighted to have a huge amount of sign-ups in the first week of the scheme going live. There is no doubt that the box will act as an incentive with lots of people and puppies wanting to get their paws on the box.
“We’re thrilled to be working alongside Natures Menu and to be teaching hundreds of puppies across the county basic obedience skills, the importance of a healthy and balanced diet and ensuing that puppies get off to the best start in a naturally nutritious new home.”
Poppy’s Picnic has come away with a top prize at the South-West regional heats of the UK-wide Rural Business Awards. The company, based in Melksham, was handed the award for Best Rural Start-Up.
Following the impressive win at the regional awards, Poppy’s Picnic will now go on to represent the region at the national final in February 2019.
Poppy’s Picnic produces raw dog food meals that are lovingly handmade by a team of fourth generation butchers in the heart of Wiltshire, using locally produced human grade ingredients. Its nutritionally balanced meals are the closest thing to what a dog would choose to eat in the wild. Poppy’s Picnic is committed to growing the business from the heart of Wiltshire and providing pet owners with the best alternative to processed, unnatural dog food.
Founder of Poppy’s Picnic, Dylan Watkins, said: “Just as humans need to eat fresh food for optimal health, it’s the same for our four-legged friends. Poppy's Picnic's fresh raw dog food meals are lovingly handmade in the heart of Wiltshire by 4th generation butchers.
"I am so proud of how the business has soared since launching in October 2016, and winning the award for Best Rural Start Up really brings home just how much we have achieved in two years. Hopefully this award is a sign of great things to come for Poppy's Picnic, as we strive to change dogs' lives one bowl at a time.”
Now in its fourth year, the Rural Business Awards is the only UK-wide programme dedicated to showcasing the success of rural businesses. It is run in partnership with Amazon.
“Rural communities are home to some of the country’s most inventive and innovative entrepreneurs and we want to celebrate their achievements and contribution through the Rural Business Awards,” said Doug Gurr, UK Country Manager, Amazon.
“I’d like to congratulate all the nominees and runners-up at this year’s regional awards and wish the winners the best of luck ahead of the national final of the Rural Business Awards in February.”
The Amazon Rural Business Awards are the brainchild of Leicestershire businesswomen Anna Price and Jemma Clifford, who want to showcase the wealth of entrepreneurial talent in rural areas of Britain – a sector of the economy they feel is all-too-often overlooked in favour of large, city-based firms.
Following their success at the Rural Business Awards, Poppy’s Picnic have since found out that two of their products, (COMPLETE Meatballs and ENHANCED Follow-on Paste) have been nominated for the Product Innovation category at the Pet Industry Federation Awards. They have also reached the finals of the British Small Business Awards in the Innovator (Disruptor) of the Year Category and Dylan Watkins; Founder of Poppy’s Picnic has been nominated for the Scale-Up Entrepreneur Award for the Wales and South West region in the NatWest Great British Entrepreneur Awards. This is on the back of Poppy’s Picnic winning the Start-up of the Year at both the Wilshire Business Awards and the Business Leader Awards. Three of their products were also awarded Highly Commended status at the PetQuip Awards recently.
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A distraught dog owner has issued a warning to other pet lovers following the death of her Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who died after eating a ‘natural treat’ bought at a pet shop.
Katy Wilson, from Kinmel Bay, North-East Wales, lost her dog Jilly after treating her to duck necks.
Less than five days after eating the treats, the 11-year-old dog started to experience sickness and diarrhoea, she was unable to sit or lie down and was pacing back and forth.
The 57-year-old took her to her local vets, where an X-ray revealed there were fragments of bone causing an obstruction in her bowels. She died at the surgery only hours later.
"Every dog owner should know about the dangers of feeding their pets these treats,” she told the Daily Post.
"I think they should be taken off the market, but at the very least they should have warning signs on the back of the packaging.”
RSPCA Cymru said it advises against feeding bones to dogs because of the risks of obstruction, damage to the teeth and fatal injuries.
The full Daily Post story can be read by clicking here.
Inspired Pet Nutrition has announced that David Proctor will be joining as Group Operations Director in early December.
He will be based at the firm’s head office at Dalton Airfield, near Thirsk in North Yorkshire.
David has spent over twenty years in the automotive and consumer goods industry and has broad experience in manufacturing, planning, warehousing, distribution and procurement.
Most recently at Molson Coors where he was Operations Director, UK and Ireland, while also leading a world class supply chain initiative across Europe.
Most of this career has been spent in the UK, but he has also had the opportunity to work in the USA, China and Central/Eastern Europe. David holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Loughborough University of Technology and an MBA from London Business School.
Married to Martha, David has an eleven year old daughter called Noa and a chocolate brown Cockapoo called Rocky.
Commenting on his new appointment David said: “I am extremely excited to be joining an exceptional team at Inspired Pet Nutrition. I have been particularly impressed with the company’s track record, its ambition and its focus on producing great quality pet food.”
Richard Page, managing director of IPN, said: “David brings a wealth of manufacturing experience to our business at a critical time. With the road map for our change programme now delivering some early gains, David is the perfect candidate to help us take production to the next level, with the aim to make us World Class within the next few years.”
OATA AGM confirms Directors for the next year
Six directors were welcomed to the OATA Board at the trade association’s Annual General Meeting – Pete Carey (Pets at Home), Mark Evenden (Devotedly Discus), Neil Hardy (Neil Hardy Aquatica), Pete Smith (Aquasense UK Ltd), Paul West (TMC) and Ben Windeat (Pets Choice)...
Six directors were welcomed to the OATA Board at the trade association’s Annual General Meeting.
Ballot papers were sent to all OATA members and the final count was taken at the AGM held on Wednesday October 17, which led to six people being voted onto the board.
These were Pete Carey from Pets at Home, Mark Evenden from Devotedly Discus, Neil Hardy from Neil Hardy Aquatica, Pete Smith from Aquasense (UK) Ltd, Paul West from TMC and Ben Windeat from Pets Choice.
Kevin Rose of Lynchford Aquatics has taken over as Chair after Ruth Low of Gordon Low Products Ltd stepped down after the usual two-year stint at the helm. Matt Stevenson of Seneye becomes the new Vice Chair.
OATA Chief Executive Dominic Whitmee said: “I’d like to thank Ruth for her two-year stint as Chair and welcome Kevin who has taken her place. Our Board is made up of a wide range of business people from companies which represent the whole industry and I appreciate the time they give to OATA to help us with our work.
"We also have to thank Mark Winter of Aqua Pacific Ltd for all his help and support as he leaves the Board after six years.”
New board member Pete Smith from Aquasense (UK) Ltd had previously enjoyed a ‘New Blood’ position on the board which gives interested OATA members the opportunity to attend board meetings with a view to putting themselves forward as potential Directors in the future. Richard Maude of Pedigree Wholesale Ltd continues for another year in this role.
OATA’s Board of Directors is made up of 18 people who represent the whole of the industry, from wholesalers and manufacturers to importers, pond and aquarium consultants and retailers. The complete OATA Board of Directors is now made up of:
- James Allison, Aquapic Solutions
- Kevin Barton, ALF (Aquatic Distributors) Ltd
- Pete Carey, Pets at Home
- Robert Edgecock, Independent Aquatic Imports Ltd
- Mark Evenden, Devotedly Discus Ltd
- Caroline Everett, Anglo Aquatic Plants Co Ltd
- Neil Hardy, Neil Hardy Aquatica Ltd
- Simon Langdale, Maidenhead Aquatics
- Philip Lawton, Kidsgrove Tropicals
- Ruth Low, Gordon Low Products Ltd
- David Pool, FishScience
- Kevin Rose, Lynchford Aquatics Ltd
- Pete Smith, Aquasense (UK) Ltd
- Dr Donna Snellgrove, Mars Petcare
- Matt Stevenson, Seneye
- Simon Strode, Spectrum Brands Tetra
- Paul West, Tropical Marine Centre
- Ben Windeatt, Pets Choice
Members interested in finding out more about how OATA’s Board works can put themselves as New Blood. If you want to know more about this then ring OATA on 01373 301353.
CP All-Rounder – the smaller kibble, lower energy version of CSJ’s hugely successful CP30 (Hi Energy) ration – has been launched after exhaustive research by top nutritionists.
Developed for all breeds CSJ’s new hypo-allergenic All-Rounder recipe containing 40% Salmon has been formulated to promote muscle tone and vitality as well as excellent skin and coat condition.
With a quality fat content, Glucosomine, MSM, Chondroitin, Grape and Olive Extract and a mixture of herbs All-Rounder’s superior joint support provides top quality nutrition that appeals to all breeds.
In trials dog owners gave a big ‘thumbs up’ to the easy to crunch tasty kibble measuring 9mm x 13mm – it's not too big for small breeds, and not too small for larger breeds.
For more info on CSJ products visit www.csjk9.com or call 01745710470
Westwood Vets’ new state-of-the-art surgery in Garforth opened on October 15.
Based at East Side Retail Park, Leeds, the purpose-built site offers the following services to their esteemed clients:
- A spacious waiting room with separate areas for dogs and cats
- The Pet Health Club, along with cost-price food
- Isolation wards for cats and large dogs
- Ample car parking and disabled access
- Vet and nurse consultations
- An operating theatre equipped with state-of-the-art facilities
- A full dental suite, including digital x-ray
- An on-site pharmacy and in-house laboratory
- An outdoor exercise area for patients (which is already going down a storm with owners!)
The new site comes as a great relief to everyone at the practice, who pride themselves on providing pets with high quality, affordable care and doing so in a friendly manner.
Their old branch was based at a small cabin next to Garforth Station; their new branch at East Side Retail Park is less than half a mile away, clients can find the Westwood team right beside the Fly Line Pub.
"After years of searching for the right premises," says Practice Manager Kay Scarlett. "We will miss our little cabin, but we couldn’t wait to get into the beautiful new practice.
"The separate dog and cat waiting areas and wards make for a stress-free environment for patients, and their owners! We can’t wait to see all of our lovely clients, and to hear what they think of these lovely new premises."
A devoted practice in the heart of their local community, Westwood Vets now have the facilities to match their passion.
"I couldn’t wait for our lovely staff to have the amazing work space that they deserve," says Clinical Director Liz Askew.
To celebrate their new branch, Westwood Vets is offering £45 Vaccination Packs for puppies and kittens, as well as free consultations for all new clients. It will host an opening afternoon for the new surgery on November 3 , 1pm-4pm.
Devon firm The Dog Treat Co has taken the imaginative step to add a vegan-themed snack to stand alongside its meat themed portfolio.
Known for avant-garde approach The Dog Treat Co has made its name both at home and abroad creating a range of clean deck/human grade ingredient treats that provide a far-reaching range of functional benefits, a respite from the unrelenting avalanche of mainstream dog treats that remain jam-packed with masking salts and sugars, low-grade meats and health affecting cheap fillers.
Company founder Joe Halliwell said: "Our Coconut + Chia +Turmeric treat was a positive response to a significant strand of our loyalist following who wondered if we’d consider adding a top notch vegan variant to our wider offer, a treat that specifically targetted hounds with delicate tummies and meat/protein-based allergies.’
If that wasn’t helpful enough, these hand-baked wheat/gluten free treats are a generous provider of lauric acid (antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal benefits) in addition to being rich in beneficial fatty acids which boost K9 immunity whilst simultaneously assisting brain and eye development.’
Then there’s turmeric, widely admired for its wide reaching, anti-inflammatory properties.
PawTrax has been supplying GPS pet tracking collars since 2009 and has now launched version 4 of its Halo GPS cat collar.
Slightly wider than previous versions, but a full 20mm shorter, the Halo V4 is still low profile at just 8mm at its thickest point.
Weighing in at just over 22g and ergonomically curved it is comfortable for most cats to wear.
The new version 4 now has the added features of an on/off button and two status lights and more sensitive antennas, for quick and accurate responses.
The Halo is fitted with a secure and safe collar.
Using GPS and GSM/GPRS the cats location can either be sent to the owners mobile phone, on demand, as a Google map link or tracked in real-time via the optional web based PawTrax mapping platform, which can be viewed on any web enabled device.
This platform can also display historic tracks either as points, a snail-trail route or as ‘Hot Spots’ showing the cats favourite haunts.
Owners can watch a paw print move around the map, at a selected interval, keeping tabs on their cat.
Using a PAYG sim there are no costly monthly subscriptions. A Global Roaming sim option is available which ensures the Halo always connects to the strongest 2g signal.
The roaming sim allows the device to be used outside of the UK and PawTrax are currently tracking cats in many countries including Sweden, Netherlands, Belgium, Norway, Iceland and Poland
The Halo lasts up to 6 days in Locate mode before it needs recharging (it will send a text message when battery is low). Operation time in tracking mode varies depending on the selected update interval. With updates every 10 minutes it’s about 36 - 48 hours. Tracking can be turned on and off at anytime simply by sending the Halo a text message.
Managing director, Peter Callaway, says: "Our new Halo V4 has been so successful our first batch sold out in just 2 days. We have received a lot of positive feedback from our customers, some returning after using the previous versions.
"We find the majority of users track their cats every 10 minutes or so for the first few days to build up a picture of where their cat spends most of its time and then put the Halo in Locate mode to conserve power and ‘ping’ it for ad-hoc location updates”
The Halo costs £95 and comes complete with PAYG sim, safety collar, charger and charger cable and 1 month free access to the optional web platform (thereafter £25 per year)
PawTrax will also soon be launching Version 2 of their popular TAGZ GPS collar for dogs.
Pictured: Bonnie with her new Halo V4 (photo courtesy of Erroll and Tracey Frost).
Pet franchise invests in its future
Oscar Pet Foods has secured the purchase of 3,000 sq metres of warehousing and offices at Bannister Hall Mill in Higher Walton, Lancashire...
Oscar Pet Foods has secured the purchase of 3,000 sq metres of warehousing and offices at Bannister Hall Mill in Higher Walton, Lancashire.
The acquisition has provided flexibility and capacity for an expanding franchise company which has recently launched its second franchise business - Leading the Way Pet Care. This positive move allows for improved distribution, training and support facilities.
The dedicated commitment of the staff and its reliable thriving network of franchisees has contributed to the growth, giving the company strength to go the extra mile with new packaging and printing equipment.
Looking forward to exciting times ahead, Oscar and Leading the Way Pet Care will continue to make an impression on the industry by providing a professional service, backed by a high level of expertise and knowledge.
For the convenience of pet owners Oscar offers a comprehensive home delivery service and Leading the Way ensures that pets at home are walked and lovingly cared for with a personal touch.
By raising the standards both companies are putting emphasis on the five pet welfare needs relating to the environment, health, companionship, behaviour and nutrition – a perfect combination for the future.
The best of the previous Pet Trade Xtra
The top-read stories from last week's Pet Trade Xtra can be seen below, if you missed them...
A film production company is searching for innovative pet product companies to take part in a new BBC series called ‘The Customer Is Always Right’.
The TV programme is an exciting new series that follows budding entrepreneurs from across the UK as they try to make a success of their inventions. They are making everything from pet accessories to health and beauty products, home and garden tools to children’s gadgets.
“This new series will celebrate small businesses, entrepreneurs, and people who are proud and passionate about their products,” said Sarah Brake, a researcher for Firecracker Films.
“From start-ups and prototypes, to products that are already on the market, we’re looking for entrepreneurs and product designers from all over the UK to showcase their work to a larger market and crucial customer testing.”
Each episode of The Customer Is Always Right will feature three entrepreneurs showing the blueprints and prototypes of their inventions. Audiences will hear about the inspiration behind their creation and the sacrifices they had to make in getting their dream item funded and brought to market.
“Crucially, their new products will be tested on the people who are most important – the customers,” added Sarah. “So often overlooked, they are the people who can make or break a business with constructive and critical feedback.
“There will be a cast of returning customers, all with different points of view, who are ready to road test the entrepreneur’s products and unleash their honest thoughts on everything from the design to the practical use to the selling price.
“They’ll unbox and deliver their honest and sometimes funny assessments before scoring each product. And because the customer is always right, they will pick the winner.”
If you are interested in taking part in the series contact the fiml producers by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Unipet International has been announced as Swale Business of the Year 2018!
“This is both our second year of entering into the Swale Business Awards, and being nominated as a finalist, so we were over-the-moon to have been announced as the winner,” said the company.
The awards celebrate and showcase the best businesses in the Swale area, including Faversham, the Isle of Sheppey, and Sittingbourne.
Unipet is a long-term Swale resident, having grown from a single farm unit in Grovehurst, up to the 8 unit, two-and-half acre site it currently occupies on Sittingbourne’s Trinity Trading Estate.
Operations director Jason Davies-Baker described the feeling of winning at this year’s awards as “absolutely fantastic. There was a lot of hard work put in by the team; in fact the team are the business. I’m really, really proud of their efforts, certainly over the last two-and-a-half years. This award is for them and it is onwards and upwards now!”
The company directors are heavily involved in the day-to-day running of the business, with their enthusiasm reflected in the staff and team ethic. A large number of employees have been with the company for many years.
Jonathon Moyce, owner and managing director of Loving Pets UK Ltd, has won the prestigious Young Exporter Award 2018 presented by the British Experters Association.
Jonathon brought together all the key elements that the judges were looking for in a winner: he started his own business, has designed products, and has grown his business exponentially since he founded it in 2014 – always with a clear focus on exports.
The company currently exports to 11 countries and stocks with multinational vendors.
Clearly happy to roll up his sleeves to do whatever it takes to make the business a success, Jonathon is a true export entrepreneur, said the judges.
Jonathon received his award from Marcus Dolman, co-chairman of BExA at the organisation’s Annual Lunch held at Mansion House last week.
"I feel extremely honoured to receive such a prestigious award from BExA," said Jonathon.
"Developing, managing and growing a business can often be a lonely place, so being recognised for “Young exporter of the Year” makes the sleepless nights, travelling away from my young family and the highs and lows all worthwhile.
"One of the core values at Loving Pets is to build a strong relationship with the customer, make friends and build trust. Winning this award enforces our values and adds credibility to what we are trying to achieve in Europe. Great team effort all round."
Geoff de Mowbray, co-chairmen of BExA and one of the award judges commented: “Having met with these remarkable young people – all of whom are winners in their own right – I’m pleased to report that the spirit of UK exports is well and truly alive!”
Marion Stinton, Business Manager of the award-winning Mr Johnson's brand, is retiring after a career spanning 37 years in the pet trade.
During her time in pet product sales and marketing Marion has worked for: Alton’s, Thacker’s Pet Products, BP Nutrition, Spooner’s wholesale, Purina, and Supreme Petfoods.
For the past 14 years she has been Business Manager at Henry Bell & Co (Grantham) Ltd & Mr Johnson’s.
"it’s the longest I have worked for one company. It’s been challenging, fulfilling and enjoyable and a great finale to my days in sales and marketing," said Marion.
"I'd like to say a big thank you to Tom Lee and Carol Foster for the opportunities and support they have given me over the years. Thank you also to Alan Gittins for his support – we have worked closely together developing the Mr Johnson’s business and have become firm friends."
Alan Gittins took on the role of Sales Manager for Mr Johnson’s in July.
Marion added: "I have thoroughly enjoyed working in the pet trade, it’s an industry that’s full of personable characters and over the years I have forged strong business relationships as well as friendships with customers and colleagues.
"When I first started in sales it was very different to today. The majority of sales people on the road were men, when you needed to check in with the office each day it was a case of finding a phone box that worked. Later on mobile phones were introduced, although they were not mobiles as we now know them, they came with a battery nearly the same size as the one under the bonnet of your car and it’s hard to believe that all you could do was make a call from them, if you could find a signal.
"The pet trade will always have a place in my heart. But it's time to ease my foot off the accelerator, spend more time relaxing with my husband Dennis, and enjoying our passion for walking in the beautiful countryside and wildlife photography.
"I would like to wish friends, colleagues, customers, suppliers and the trade all the best for the future."
Marion is pictured with Alan Gittins, Sales Manager for Mr Johnson’s, after winning a PATS New Product Award.
The Pet Industry Federation has revealed the finalists for this year’s PIF Awards.
The Pet Industry Federation Awards not only celebrate those pet businesses that have made outstanding achievements throughout the year, but it also provides a fantastic opportunity for the whole industry to come together, socialise and network over a three-course meal with entertainment.
This year’s entries were particularly high-calibre in the pet service sectors, such as home boarding and doggy daycare, reflecting the growth these types of businesses in recent years; and in product innovation - a new category which has proved exceptionally popular. Judges will now focus on whittling these quality finalists down to winners.
This year’s finalists are
Retailer of the Year (sponsored by Agria Pet Insurance)
Digbys Pets & Aquatics, Skegness
Kennelgate – Pets & Friends, Lichfield
The Dog House, London
Redpaw Pet Supplies, Plymouth
The Pet Experience, Weymouth
Manufacturer of the Year (sponsored by PATS)
Marriages Specialist Foods
Export Strategy Award
Grooming Business of the Year (sponsored by Jelf)
Barkingham Park Pet Spa, Neath
Canny Cuts, Shrewsbury
KD Grooming Studio, Wincanton
Muddy Pawz, Wakefield
The Dog House, London
Kennel of the Year
Home from Home Pet Care Ltd, Hull
Orchard End Kennels, Crediton
Quintessential Quarters, Stafford
Cattery of the Year
Chequer Trees Cattery, Heathfield
Hedgerows Cattery, Norwich
Lea Wood Cattery, Gainsborough
Mayfield Cattery, Mayfield
The Cats Whiskers, Bedford
Dog Walking Business of the Year
Friends for Pets, Bristol Branch
Happy Hounds, Winchester
Muddy Pawz, Wakefield
Woof Walkies, Wrexham
Home Boarding Business of the Year
Barking Mad, Fife & Kinross
Friends for Pets, Bristol Branch
Holidays 4 Dogs, York
The Pet Joint, Denbigh
Woofies Pet Services, Abergele
Dog Daycare Business of the Year
Buddies Doggy Daycare, London
Claire’s Comfy Canines, Burnham
Doodley Dogs, Crawley
Happy Hounds, Winchester
The Wag Club, London
Willow Tree K9, Biggleswade
Woof Walkies, Wrexham
Product Innovation Award
Naturediet Eco-Friendly Packaging Range
Peak Pet Products Pet Weighter
Pet Trade Innovations Doc & Phoebe’s No Bowl System
Siccaro Supreme Pro Dog Drying Robe
SureFlap Microchip Cat Flap Connect
Marriages Specialist Foods
Pooch & Mutt
The Awards winners will be announced on Tuesday 27 November at a themed black-tie dinner to be held at the Whittlebury Hall, Towcester, Northamptonshire. Additionally, guests will also discover the recipient of the 2018 Lifetime Achievement Award and a new Special Award category, presented to someone who has made a unique contribution to the industry.