INTRODUCTIONS IN WET FOOD OPTIONS
Wilmington, Del.-based Riverfront Pets primarily carries Weruva in the wet cat
food category, and general manager Erin Hoy said the store recently started
stocking the company’s recently introduced Slide N’ Serve pouches, a pâté that
easily slides from the pouch, making for less food waste.
At Long Leash on Life in Albuquerque, N.M., co-owner Norm Shrout plans to
introduce Weruva’s Slide N’ Serve pouches before the holidays. Shrout is also
looking forward to Koha’s new pouches offered in a nonseafood flavor.
“We are super excited about these both because they are fish free, but also
because they are limited in scope and single-source animal proteins,” he said.
At SuperZoo in Las Vegas in June, Overland Park, Kan.-based Ziwi USA
launched its Free-Range Chicken Recipes for cats.
“Sourced from independently audited humane farms in New Zealand, it’s
quickly becoming one of our top sellers,” said Heather Hickey, vice president of
sales. “We’re also working on several new innovations in this category that we
expect to [launch] in the near future.”
Also at SuperZoo, Whitebridge Pet Brands introduced Tiki Cat Mousse. The
chicken-flavored food is available in kitten and senior varieties. Kitten Mousse
is full of prebiotics to support a growing kitten’s digestive health. Senior Mousse
has a velvety smooth texture, which is perfect for older cats with sensitive
stomachs or teeth and gum issues. The mousse is full of protein and has pumpkin
to improve digestibility and green tea with antioxidant properties, according to
In September, Petcurean Pet Nutrition expanded its Now Fresh wet food Tetra
Pak line to include new textures and recipes, including Now Fresh Grain Free Cod
Pâté Recipe, Now Fresh Grain Free Chicken Pâté Recipe and Now Fresh Grain
Free Minced Chicken Recipe, which can be served as treats, toppers or complete
“For those cats that are;water-averse, the bone broth in Now Fresh wet
recipes;encourages increased moisture ingestion,” said Annabelle Immega, trade
marketing manager for the Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada-based company.
“Added cranberries may also support urinary tract health by preventing harmful
bacteria from adhering to the bladder and causing infection.”
Petcurean Pet Nutrition now offers Now Fresh Grain Free Cod Pâté
Recipe, Now Fresh Grain Free Chicken Pâté Recipe and Now Fresh Grain
Free Minced Chicken Recipe in Tetra Pak cartons.
is full of
health. Ziwi USA’s Free-Range Chicken Recipes for
cats are sourced from independently audit-
ed humane farms in New Zealand.
SHOW THEM THE OPTIONS
Pet specialty retailers have reported success selling wet cat foods with everything from sampling to social media
“Free samples are the most effective way to get the customer’s attention,” said Erin Hoy, general manager at
Riverfront Pets in Wilmington, Del.
Free samples can work wonders with staffers as well, said Norm Shrout, co-owner of Long Leash on Life in
Albuquerque, N.M. At his store, employees with cats are given samples of moist foods to try with their own pets.
“Shortly thereafter, their cats transform into much healthier felines with shinier coats, increased energy levels
and fewer urinary problems,” Shrout said. “In the future, when the staff attempts to sell wet cat food to customers,
the endorsement is truly genuine, as they’ve witnessed the benefits of feeding wet food firsthand. Customers sense
that honest endorsement and are much more likely to partake of the wet cat food.”
In addition to sampling, Riverfront Pets puts new products on social media and uses sidewalk signs to call
attention to its wet cat food options.
Social media is a tried-and-true method of getting the word out about new foods and their benefits.
“I encourage our independent retailer partners to leverage this medium to the hilt by posting special offers,
staging modest contests and sharing photos of their customers’ pets enjoying our products on their Facebook or
Pinterest page,” said Adrian Pettyan, CEO and co-founder of Caru Pet Food Co. in Vero Beach, Fla.
Annabelle Immega, trade marketing manager for Petcurean Pet Nutrition in Chilliwack, British Columbia, Canada,
said that while it’s difficult to beat face-to-face interaction for recommending wet cat food to consumers, social
media can be a very effective tool for bringing attention to this category.
“Another way to educate consumers is through social media, which can be cost effective and highly interactive,”
she said. “The educational approach is often overlooked as being too dry for social media, but that doesn’t have to
be the case. A great way to add a little excitement is to include a giveaway with an engagement driver, such as a cat
photo contest with a high-value prize attached.”
WHO’S BUYING WET FOOD
Despite the cost, households of all income levels
overwhelmingly prefer wet cat food.
In fact, households with income of $34,999 and under
(81%) are more likely to prefer wet food for their cats
because their cats prefer the taste as compared to those
with income of $35,000 to $74,999 (69%) and $75,000
and above (65%).
For nearly half of cat owners (40%), their cat’s preference is one of their top two considerations for choosing
Source: Wakefield Research online survey conducted
Aug. 30-Sept. 24, 2018, with 1,000 U.S. cat owners
Nearly half of cat owners (42%) typically buy wet cat food in 5.5-ounce cans, and 34% opt for the 3-ounce cans.
Source: Wakefield Research online survey conducted Aug. 30-Sept. 24, 2018, with 1,000 U.S. cat owners