DIETS MEET SPECIFIC NEEDS
Recently introduced natural dog diets are focusing on limited ingredients and
specific pet sizes. Still, grain-free and novel protein varieties remain on trend,
according to manufacturers.
In May, Fromm Family Pet Food in Mequon, Wis., added a recipe to its
Four-Star Nutritionals line: Rancherosa. The canine kibble features a blend of
beef, lamb, pork and trout paired with pinto beans, peas and chickpeas to offer
consumers a grain-free entrée, said company officials.
Pet specialty retailers and manufacturers
report that despite rising natural dog food
prices, sales have continued on an upward
trajectory because customers understand the
value these diets offer their pets.
In fact, Natasha Davis, client service
manager for the POS tracking (pet) team at
The food is formulated to meet the Association of American Feed Control
GfK, a German market research firm with
Officials (AAFCO) dog food nutrient profiles for all life stages, including growth
of large-sized breeds that weigh 70 pounds or more as an adult, officials added.
The company also launched its Four-Star Nutritionals Shredded Turkey in
U.S. headquarters in New York, said, “Adding
benefits to natural diets helps add a more
premium dollar point to the base offering.
Gravy Entrée in July. Formulated as a nutritionally complete wet diet for all life
stages and lifestyles, the food contains shredded turkey simmered in broth with
vegetables, including potatoes, carrots, green beans, peas, and pinto, kidney
and white beans.
“For example, you have Natural Brand A at
$2.11 price per pound, and you have Natural
At SuperZoo in Las Vegas in June, Champion Petfoods debuted two
Brand Y, which looks similar, but says it
includes probiotics and is great for digestion,” she said. “Natural Brand Y can now charge a little more for its
natural benefit or more perceived quality ingredients.”
SKUs for its Acana Singles dry food line: Turkey & Greens and Beef &
Pumpkin. The Edmonton, Alberta, Canada-based company also enhanced
its other Acana Singles recipes—Duck & Pear, Pork & Squash and Lamb &
Small changes, such as using millet and quinoa instead of rice or peas, or sweet potato in place of white
potato, make all the difference, she added.
Apple—by increasing the real meat ratio from 50 to 60 percent, reducing the
carbohydrates to 25 percent and shortening the ingredient panel, according to
Price is not the sole driver for pet owners, according to Bryan Nieman, brand director at Fromm Family Pet
Food in Mequon, Wis.
Tiki Pets, a brand of St. Louis-based Whitebridge Pet Brands, recently added
three products to its Tiki Dog Aloha Petites line, which is formulated to meet the
nutritional needs of small dog breeds. Aloha Petites for Puppies is a grain-free
formula that comes in Chicken, Peas and Lentils Luau flavor in a 3.5-pound bag.
“Today’s pet parents are in search of high-quality products from reputable manufacturers,” he said. “Price
itself is not the only motivator, especially when it comes to the safety and quality of the food they feed their
Ann Hudson, vice president of marketing for Tiki Pets, a brand of St. Louis-based Whitebridge Pet Brands,
Aloha Petites Mousse for Puppies is a chicken-flavored wet food that
contains chicken liver, pumpkin, salmon oil and probiotics for increased
digestibility, said company officials. Aloha Petites Mousse for Seniors comes in
a chicken and beef flavor and includes salmon oil, turmeric and pumpkin.
“Consumer dollars are being stretched across a number of categories, and pet owners are looking
for affordable solutions,” she said. “But they will pay a premium if they genuinely believe the quality and
functional benefits will be truly worthwhile for their pet.”
Retailers across the nation reported similar findings.
Tiki Pets also introduced Tiki Dog Meaty cups in five all-meat, limited-
ingredient formulas, which include: Chicken, Chicken & Egg, Chicken & Beef,
“Over the years, I have been amazed at what most people will pay for their pets’ health; I thought I was
the only one,” said Michelle McConnell, co-owner of A Natural Pet Pantry in Osprey, Fla. “People will pay for
quality, and they realize that good food is not inexpensive.”
Chicken & Salmon and Chicken & Duck. The 3-ounce cups are protein packed
and completely grain and carbohydrate free, officials said.
Barb Emmett, president and owner of Godfrey’s—Welcome to Dogdom in Mohnton, Pa., agreed.
“For the most part, in the pet food industry, the higher the price, the better the food will be,” she said.