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Pet Product News Features Natura Petz in Demand Is Up for Organic & Natural

Thank you Pet Product News for featuring Natura Petz Organics in your March 2016 article on increasing demand for Organic and Natural products! 

Demand for Natural, Organic Pet Supplements Is Up

Pet owners clamor for natural and organic supplements for their dogs and cats, and retailers who fully understand these products are better poised to sell them.

 

“Consumers are looking for more healthful ways to treat issues and conditions, and better ways to stay healthy to begin with,” said Stephen Smith, president of Pet Releaf in Denver.

“Consumers are looking for more healthful ways to treat issues and conditions, and better ways to stay healthy to begin with,” said Stephen Smith, president of Pet Releaf in Denver.

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These days, pet owners are looking for supplements with natural ingredients that address health conditions as well as provide preventive care.

“In the supplements category, we are seeing a significant increase in consumer demand and consumer awareness,” said Stephen Smith, president of Pet Releaf in Denver. “Consumers are looking for more healthful ways to treat issues and conditions, and better ways to stay healthy to begin with.”

Pet owners want supplements that contain purely natural ingredients, said Roger S. Emery, owner and co-founder of Ozzie’s Naturals in Sun City, Ariz.

“They want non-GMO sources that are organic, with the elimination of harmful preservatives and fillers,” he said.

Norm Shrout, co-owner of Long Leash On Life in Albuquerque, N.M., pointed out several trends in the natural supplement category.

“There is expeditious movement away from complete vitamin mineral supplements to more specific functional supplements with fewer ingredients and potentially higher efficacy,” he said.

Nutraceutical food/supplements are becoming very popular due to their medicinal benefits, he added.

Palatability in Supplements

For a natural supplement to be effective, pets must consume it. This makes palatability particularly important in this category.

“A product does no good if the pet won’t take it,” said Timothy “TJ” Schoenborn, owner and pet nutritionist at Victoria’s All Natural Pet Health in Fond du Lac, Wis. “And it’s no fun having to wrestle your pet time and time again to take a product.”

Lisa DiJon, co-owner of Natural Pet Outlet in Bridgeport, Conn., also said good flavor is vital in nutritional supplements.

“Palatability in any supplement is everything,” she said. “If they won’t eat it, it’s pointless.”

On the other hand, it’s important not to compromise quality for palatability, said Ara Bohchalian, CEO of International Veterinary Sciences in Anaheim, Calif.

“Palatability is important, but not more important than effectiveness of the product,” Bohchalian said. “It’s more important to create a product that works and does what it says than to turn it into a treat.”

Consumer Education

Because of the sometimes complex nature of supplements, pet owner education is vital in this category, according to manufacturers and retailers.

“Consumer education is very important as pet parents are just starting to incorporate supplements into the diets of their companion animals,” said Bette Schubert, co-founder and senior vice president of sales, new product development and education for Bravo Pet Foods in Manchester, Conn. “Consumers will have lots of questions regarding what is needed from a nutritional perspective, what dosage and what problems/conditions can be alleviated by which supplements.”

Schubert pointed out several actions retailers can take to become more knowledgeable so they can educate customers in kind.

“This includes taking advantage of any education or training offered by manufacturers and reading up on the latest studies,” she said.

“Consumer education is very important as pet parents are just starting to incorporate supplements into the diets of their companion animals,” said Bette Schubert, co-founder and senior vice president of sales, new product development and education for Bravo Pet Foods in Manchester, Conn. “Consumers will have lots of questions regarding what is needed from a nutritional perspective, what dosage and what problems/conditions can be alleviated by which supplements.”

According to David DeLorenzo, president of Vetscience LLC/Fruitables Pet Food in Dallas, pet owners are eager to learn about supplements and other natural categories.

“The consumer is curious and is readily adapting the latest human health trends, and is making decisions about their pet care through this perspective,” he said. “So it follows there should be educational materials and efficacy-based reasons for making recommendations.”

DeLorenzo said that although pet owners are doing some of their own research, retailers also should provide nutritional supplement counseling to their clients.

“It’s a good way to increase credibility, loyalty and, ultimately, sales,” he said.

It’s important for supplement formulators to help educate store staff to better understand which natural active ingredients deliver different benefits, and to discuss the researched dosages needed, said John Leveris, co-founder and product formulator for WellyTails Inc. in Bonita Springs, Fla.

“Pet parents want products that provide real results and benefits,” he said. “They want their pet to be helped to have normal function and wellness restored.”

Promotion and Display

When marketing natural supplements, retailers need to grab customers’ attention while also educating them about the product.

“Supplements have to be shelf stable and retail friendly, and tend to do best when displayed at eye level or placed in counter displays,” said Heidi L. Nevala, president and founder of Natura Petz Organics in Minneapolis. “Vibrant, eye-catching labels that clearly provide all necessary details for a pet parent to make a decision are critical.”

Norm Shrout, co-owner of Long Leash On Life in Albuquerque, N.M., merchandises natural supplements in his store by both brand and function.

“At each staff meeting, we try to feature a supplement and review the benefits and applicable situations in which to recommend it,” he said. “For the supplements that we deem universally necessary, we will offer and promote those at special prices intermittently to be sure that all customers are somewhat familiar with them.”

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