And they’re changing in unique, innovative ways: Jiminy’s Dog Food & Treats, a sustainable pet food manufacturer based in California, has turned to cricket farming to replace traditional animal protein with cricket protein.
Unusual? Sure. But it’s making a big difference.
“Cricket farming is close to ideal,” Jiminy’s CEO and founder Anne Carlson told Pet Product News. “There’s no need for acres and acres of grassland. A cricket barn is self-contained, and there’s no waste runoff to foul groundwater. Insect farms can be placed within a city and can go vertical too, so the footprint is extremely efficient and sustainable.”
Pet food manufacturers used 1.83 million tons of meat and poultry products in 2018 to support animal-based pet diets, and pivoting to more sustainable proteins can reduce this number significantly.
A new kind of agriculture is also cropping up among pet food manufacturers to ensure food production helps rather than hurts the environment.
Companies like Terramera, a global agtech company, leverage regenerative agriculture to farm and graze plant products that can help to reverse climate change by rebuilding soil organic matter and restoring degraded soil biodiversity.
Healthier soil produces high-quality, nutrient-dense food while enabling carbon drawdown and improving the water cycle.
Georgia-based dog treat and chew manufacturer Farm Hounds is working directly with farm producers to deliver more sustainable products, including White Oak Pastures, which focuses on regenerative land management and humane animal husbandry.
The trend is gaining traction, according to the Pet Sustainability Coalition (PSC). A number of pet food brands have called upon PSC to make their food more sustainable, using regenerative farming as a launching pad to do so.
Pet food industry goliaths like Petco Health and Wellness Company are also taking the pledge to be more sustainable. In April, Petco make a commitment to make 50 percent of its product assortment sustainable by the end of 2025.
This commitment includes responsible manufacturing, sustainably sourced materials, sustainably sourced ingredients, responsible packaging, and an increased focus on animal welfare.
The pledge compounds Petco’s existing efforts to support sustainability. In 2020, Petco promised to use 92 percent less plastic and 23 percent less cardboard in its e-commerce packaging.
Initiatives centered on true sustainability need to focus on the entire supply chain – taking a more environmentally responsible approach to every step of the product lifecycle, from production to packaging, will ensure Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) initiatives make a real and quantifiable impact on the environment.
Bamboo Rose helps retailers successfully source and track ingredients throughout the supply chain, manage and optimize formulations, enhance quality control, and certify ingredient and labeling compliance against sustainability initiatives.
This level of transparency, which spans development and sourcing through distribution, guarantees customers receive the safest and most sustainably produced products possible.
Find out how Bamboo Rose can help pet food companies achieve a brighter, more sustainable future today.