Jilliann Smith, director of communications for Merrick Pet Care, explains the company’s commitment to crafting the most nutritious food using the best possible ingredients.
By Pet Business Staff
Tell us about Merrick Pet Care. How does the company’s approach to pet nutrition set it apart from its competitors? We have been crafting natural recipes from the highest-quality ingredients for more than 30 years. We have always been dedicated to providing the most nutritious food for dogs and cats made from the best possible ingredients, and this commitment continues to drive everything we do at Merrick. And, since we believe pets deserve the best food ever, we continuously review our portfolio to ensure all our recipes are superior in nutrition, quality and taste.
What are some of Merrick Pet Care’s most popular products/lines? What makes these products popular with pet owners? We have earned a reputation in the marketplace for our famous stews for dogs that are crafted with chunks of real beef or chicken in a savory gravy, along with high-quality vegetables like baby carrots and potatoes. With mouth watering names, such as Pappy’s Pot Roast Dinner and Big Texas Steak Tips Dinner, our signature wet recipes are top sellers in pet specialty stores. Pet parents like our bone-in recipes, such as Wingaling and Smothered Comfort, because we use a special, slow-cook process to make the chicken wing or thigh bone mushy and safe for dogs to enjoy.
Cats are notoriously fussy in terms of flavors and textures. So, our popular line of Purrfect Bistro recipes panders to such felines because it offers a wide selection of protein choices available in a variety of highly digestible textures.
One of Merrick Pet Care’s newest product lines is Merrick Grain Free Bon Appétits. What are the key selling points of this line? Our line of Merrick Purrfect Bistro Grain Free Bon Appétits is the newest addition to the growing liquid meal enhancer category. The pouches of gravies and morsels feature deboned chicken, salmon, turkey or beef as the first ingredient and help cats get the nutrition they need. The Bon Appétits gravies are crafted with chunks of meat in a high-moisture gravy and help provide up to 25 percent of a cat’s daily water intake.
What pet parents love about these new pouches is that they can be added to kibble as a topper to add more variety to their cat’s diet. Since these pouches are designed for supplemental feeding, we have a calorie calculator on our website to assist pet parents in working out the correct quantities to feed when mixing recipes in order to not overfeed.
What are some of the other new offerings from Merrick Pet Care? What makes these products stand out in the marketplace? We recently introduced two new Limited Ingredient Diet recipes—Salmon & Brown Rice and Chicken & Brown Rice—that feature healthy grains. All our Limited Ingredient Diet recipes are supplemented with taurine and DL-methionine to ensure they deliver a strong amino acid profile.
Earlier this year, Merrick Pet Care launched its “Dogs are in Charge” campaign. What is the focus of this campaign? How has it helped raise the profile of the Merrick brand? We launched the new campaign to raise awareness for the Merrick brand and connect with pet parents around the relatable truth that dogs reign supreme. We commissioned a Harris Poll online survey, which confirmed that dogs are in charge. It found that nearly seven out of 10 pet parents (69 percent) agreed that their dog is their favorite member of the household.
Our “Dogs are in Charge” campaign aims to remind pet parents why the rulers of their household deserve the best food ever. That’s why we remain committed to crafting the best recipes for dogs and cats.
Aside from offering a broad lineup of high-quality products, how does Merrick Pet Care help drive success for pet stores? What types of sale and marketing support does the company provide? Our knowledgeable sales team works closely with our pet specialty retail partners to identify trends and opportunities in the marketplace. We know pet specialty stores offer a lot of value to pet parents with their great customer service, product knowledge and personal recommendations. That’s why we put a strong focus on staff trainings and seminars to help educate store staff about our latest offerings and key benefits. We also work with our pet specialty partners to develop targeted promotions that will appeal to their local pet parents.
What does the future hold for Merrick Pet Care? Do you currently have any new products in the pipeline? We will continue to focus on winning in the pet specialty channel with differentiated innovation and superior products. PB