Amid a rising demand for its offer, UK insect-based pet treat manufacturer Mr Bug is preparing to rollout two new products and plans expand its manufacturing capacities later this year, according to a senior company representative.
“Only natural ingredients are used and the mealworm protein is bred on our farm in Devon," said Cunningham. "We are the only UK company currently doing this, ensuring our products are of the highest quality. Not only is mealworm protein tasty, but it is a super healthy protein that vets are now recommending for dogs with allergies and dietary conditions."
In 2024, the business aims to launch two new products: a Super Food Topper “designed to provide a generous dash of nutty mealworm protein seasoning at mealtime" and full-range dried dog food “made with only natural ingredients and no grain to provide a super healthy, hypoallergenic and sustainably sourced food for dogs,” said Cunningham.
The company supplies its output to some 70 independent pet shops in the UK which is its main market, but Mr Bug’s founders are already making efforts to expand the brand’s international presence.
“Currently, we’re sold abroad in Denmark and the Netherlands, and very much hope to expand this at the Interzoo trade show in Nuremberg where we have a stand later in the year,” Cunningham said.
Other plans by the business include investing in ramping up its manufacturing capacities to facilitate further expansion.
“With sales growing and the need to drive production costs down, we will be seeking investment to expand our premises later this year which we are very excited about,” he said.
Polish insect-based protein producer introduces wet pet food
Specialized in making insect-based protein, Polish company Ovad is entering the country’s pet food market with its own brand of wet dog food, Hello Yellow.
“For the past three years, we have been breeding mealworms, producing, among others, raw material for pet food," Wojciech Zahaczewski, one of the company’s co-owners, told local news site Rzeczo.pl. "We are currently entering the market with our own wet food."
In the first phase of the brand’s development, Hello Yellow will be available in three flavors and sold at a number of pet food stores across Poland, according to data from Ovad.
Started in 2021, the Polish business operates its production facility in Olsztyn, in the country’s northeastern part.
Spanish Affinity Petcare secures state aid for French factory investment
Spanish pet food producer Affinity Petcare, an offshoot of Agrolimen SA, has secured a total of €300,000 (US$324,000) from a number of French state and local government authorities to cofinance its project to expand the factory in La Chapelle-Vendômoise, in France’s region of Centre-Val de Loire. In order to ramp up manufacturing, the company has allocated €5 million ($5.4 million) for the project.
Through the investment, Affinity Petcare plans to expand the plant’s manufacturing capacities by more than 20% by 2027, local daily La Nouvelle Republique reported. Last year, the French facility increased its production by 18%, reaching an output of about 120,000 tons of pet food.
The pet food company’s brands include Advance, Ultima, Brekkies and Libra. In addition to its headquarters in Barcelona, Spain, Affinity Petcare runs offices in Paris, Milan, Snetterton in the UK, and Brazil’s São Paulo. The business sells its products to more than 20 countries worldwide.