Pet food formulations inspired by specific ecosystems and biological groups stood out among trends in the new product showcase at SuperZoo 2019. While nature-themed pet food formulations are hardly new, the recipe names seemed more specific and technical this year. Forest, waterway and other biomes were distilled into pet food flavors among the new products on display.
New pet food products that identified specific ecosystems as the inspiration for their formulation included (but were not limited to):
Two ducks narrowly escape a bobcat on the front panel of this new cat food from Taste of the Wild. Roasted quail and roasted duck are noted as the protein species in the Lowland Creek formulation. Geographically-inspired formulations make up many of Taste of the Wild’s existing cat and dog foods, such as Canyon River and Rocky Mountain.
Global Pets Inc. introduced Essence as a new brand at SuperZoo. One formulation is Ranch and Meadow. A wild boar stands out at the top of four animals floating like Mufasa in the clouds. Pig goat and sheep are the other animals. The background is a picturesque scene of a river running through a canyon. The Air and Gamefowl recipe features a wild turkey, a duck, a chicken and a domesticated turkey.
New Carnivora cat food products from Blue Buffalo noted on labeling that it contains no grains, peas or potatoes in its Woodland and Coastal varieties. The new products come in both in wet and dry styles. Both are grain-free and the label notes that they contain 11 animal protein sources. Woodland recipe cat foods in kitten and weight-control adult recipes were on display at SuperZoo. Both featured muted scenes of low, forested mountains and woodcut-like images of a chicken, flounder, turkey and duck. The Coastal variety has scenery of a coastal rocky outcropping.
This dog treat company’s packaging denotes specific geographic regions, breeds or other local factors, for their novel proteins sustainably sourced from Africa. For example, the beef in their products is from Nguni cattle, a breed used traditionally by the people of the region. The ostrich they use comes from the arid Karoo region of South Africa where ostrich form a natural part of the ecosystem and eat a variety of wild plants. Native warthogs and fish from the Cape appeared in other formulations.
New shelter data casts doubt on whether the pet population and pet ownership are truly growing.
While the pandemic caused unprecedented suffering worldwide in 2020, the disruptions to dogs, cats and other pets adoption numbers may normalize in 2021.