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More Big Business in Pet Food

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  1. Ann

    “The Motley Fool article – remember, which is advising investors how invest their money – states there is a “huge ramp to ride in the pet supplies industry as owners continue to humanize their pets.” And stating “A number of high-profile pet-food recalls has pet owners deciding they need better, higher-quality foods for their charges.” ”

    I think they will need to be watched more closely now that we know they will appeal to pet owners’ emotions and also use the “high profile pet recalls” to sharpen their marketing tactics. They will be taking full advantage of these two achilles heels of pet ownership and will be less trustworthy than ever in pursuit of their bottom line profits.

  2. Jay Smith

    And, the mentality here isn’t about making a fair return on their investment in plant, people, equipment and raw food materials. It’s more about chasing after that greater-and-greater return year after year after year, that Wall Street has now convinced investors is their God-given right.

    Our financial models and our very free-market system was never designed to be exclusively about this concept of capitalism that drives inflation, personnel layoffs, and offshoring of manufacturing. Consumers became complacent and left manufacturers to their own devices for so long that now “cheaper and cheaper” drives quality into the ground in almost every segment of consumer goods.

    Enough is enough. Reward small companies that are content to make a fair return for honest products, and leave the Wall Street chase of increasing annual returns to the Giants who will soon collapse under their own demand for more oxygen than can exist in their worlds.

    1. dmiller

      I could not have said it better my self

    2. R egina

      Excellent comment, Jay. I too, would rather pay a bit more for a food that I know is made by someone who still is in it for their own love of animals (as opposed to just “marketing” to people who love animals). These big money-hungry players in the game do not actually care about the consumer, just about profits. I’m sure the folks who sold Natura to Proctor and Gamble are horrified at what has happened to their once well-respected products. Did they really not think that P&G would find a away to increase the profitability of that line of foods (with lawyer-drafted loopholes in any “promises” they made to Natura). Big conglomerates are JUST in it for the money. Why do you think they are buying up well-respected brands? Some folks in the stores have yet to hear that Natura brands were bought by P&G, so kept on buying it until that last recall removed it from the shelves. I personally use Blue Buffalo, because I liked the story of how they started, and the unique way they make it. I believe they are staying true to their original mission. My pets have thrived on Blue, and I’ve talked to a lot of other folks who rave about it. I will say this, though, if Blue were bought out by a big conglomerate, I’d immediately start looking elsewhere!

  3. Gitta

    I can’t see any positive development here. As long as they sit on an endless supply of garbage from their human food production, they will devise better (meaning more devious) ways to recycle that garbage for a tidy profit. They are NOT beholden to us the consumer. They ARE beholden to their shareholders and Wall Street breathing down their necks.

    Yes, there is competition. But I bet, there is also collaboration going on. Them against us mentality. Even more so the more educated we petsumers are becoming.

    1. Therese

      I was thinking this exact same thing – food conglomerants with a handy outlet for the waste products of human food production. One need look no further than Royal Canin’s attempt to sell the public on chemically denatured chicken feathers as a novel protein for dogs.

  4. NMD

    I wish people would just let dogs be dogs. We only have ourselves to blame that big companies are jumping on the pet food band wagon. I work at a veterinary clinic and when people tell me the junk (treats) and amount of food they feed their dogs, I cringed in fear. I feed my 4 dogs a raw diet. I reward with them with playtime, toys, grooming and the freedom to be dogs, not food.

  5. Sharon Norris

    I cook for my dogs and cats. They get the same foods that I do (except I don’t eat liver), frozen veggies etc. My larger dogs (greyhounds) get some kibble. I recently gave one of my iggies some SD/JD. This little dog has seizures but they are well controlled and “rarely ever happen anymore” so I gave him just a few pieces in his dinner. On the third day he started having seizures again but I didn’t really think it was the food but I fed it to him for a week and he had four seizures during that time. At that point I though it might be related to the food so he didn’t get any more and he hasn’t had a seizure since–over three months now. I thought this food might be okay because of the joint supplements but have decided it is as bad as the rest and just add the supplements myself. No more SD for my kids.

  6. John Sturgess

    Their are smaller Brands that were of HIGH QUALITY that got purchased by a INVESTMENT FIRM from the NE. Wellness was their first success in making a big $$$ FLIP. Yu used to see Wellness at only Specialty or Boutique Pet Stores. Now every major seller carry’s them. For a few years I fed Natures Variety RAW and then I noticed a change in the quality of the food. I found out that the same investment firm that got in Bed with Wellness got into Bed with NATURES VARIETY. Now they market every where and I have stopped feeding it for 3 years now and Feed Primal Raw and love the results on my dogs. BIG $$$ Money to be made in Pet Food and every one is jumping in….

    1. Regina

      Yeah, “Investment Firm” should be a big clue in who they are really in it for. They see these brands doing well, and want to rake in more profits for their investors, with no concern for the actual users of the products.

  7. Colleen

    P&G does make food with no ingredient sourced from China…Natura.

    1. Peter

      Virtually all pet food manufacturers source their vitamin supplements (which they must add to meet nutrient profiles, and frankly, they must also add to recover those profiles subsequent to processing which destroys nutrients which must be “added back”) from China. Pet food manufacturers say there is no other place to get bulk vitamins. The pet food reps who insist that their foods are “human grade” or otherwise claim that ingredients are “US sourced” or not from China are often mis- or under-informed or even instructed on using scripts to answer the basic range of expected consumer inquiries. But it is wrong to state that Natura foods are not sourced from China unless they can state precisely about the issue of bulk vitamins, and confirm the country of origin.

  8. Peter

    According to the AP, “The deal also helps Del Monte Foods exit the fruit and vegetable business, which is can be volatile as weather, labor and other issues can dramatically impact its supplies and performance.” And when you think about it, it’s true, the supply of by-products, offal, cheap grains and sawdust that Del Monte uses in many of its pet foods will certainly never be in short supply. The deal to jettison their human foods businesses in favor of concentrating on pet foods makes economic sense.

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