NutriSource Pet Foods, one of America’s most beloved and trusted pet brands, and Finley’s Barkery, a premium pet brand bringing inclusion to the pet industry through employment and giving initiatives, announce a strategic product development and manufacturing partnership that will bring together the respective strengths of each company to produce high quality pet treats and provide employment opportunities and support to the disability community.
Under the partnership, NutriSource will provide an interest free bridge loan to Finley’s, assist in the development of new products and produce Finley’s Functional Benefit Bars at NutriSource’s ultra-modern manufacturing facility in Delano, MN. Finley’s brings their mission and passion to serve those with developmental and physical disabilities while delivering on the brand promise of products customers love, ingredients they trust and a mission everyone can benefit from. The two companies will join forces to employ those with disabilities and identify opportunities to support people and pets in need.
The collaboration was sparked when Charlie Nelson, CEO of KLN Family Brands, the parent company of NutriSource, viewed a television report three years ago on Finley’s unique mission to provide employment opportunities to those in the disability community through the production of pet treats. While the timing for both companies wasn’t right for a collaboration then, Nelson and Finley’s founders, Kyle and Angie Gallus, committed to seeking future opportunities. The opening of Tuffy’s new facility in 2020 and growth at Finley’s provided the impetus for the partnership that will see products roll off the line in Fall, 2021.
“Our company has been producing pet foods for nearly 60 years and we’ve never forgotten the help we’ve gotten along the way,” said Nelson. “We feel privileged to pay that support forward by assisting Finley’s in their mission to provide premium pet treats and employment opportunities to those who just need an opportunity to show their talents and abilities.”
As two former special education teachers, Finley’s co-founders Angie and Kyle saw an opportunity to serve a greater purpose through our pets. In 2016, they launched Finley’s, named after their resilient rescue pup and CTO (Chief Treat Officer). Finley's goal is to create paid employment opportunities for people with disabilities while dedicating 50% of net profits to initiatives providing employment training, accessibility, health & wellness, and advocacy platforms for people with disabilities.
“We are hoping that our partnership will be the catalyst for other companies to see the importance of inclusion and the potential of the disability community,” said Angie Gallus. “With growth of brand awareness and revenue, we will be able to serve people not only with employment but financially through our giving initiatives. It shows when organizations come together to put people first, it sends a clear message to the industry of what is important. Now more than ever, these partnerships are what customers want to see. It’s not about giving dollars; it’s about putting those dollars to work to serve people in need.”