GHP Q4 2018

26 GHP / Q4 2018 , OnNovember 13th, Petco announced it will not sell food and treats containing artificial colours, flavours and preservatives* for dogs and cats byMay 2019. The move makes Petco the first and onlymajor retailer of pet food and treats to take a stand against such ingredients, reaffirming the company’s commitment to being the lifelong, trusted partner – for pets and pet parents, alike. Petco First and Only Major Retailer of Pet Food to Not Sell Food and Treats with Artificial Ingredients “Since our first store opened in 1965, Petco has been dedicated to ensuring the well-being of pets. That commitment continues today, with our decision to not carry food and treats for dogs and cats containing artificial flavours, colours and preservatives,” said Petco CEO, Ron Coughlin. “Some may question whether this makes good business sense but putting pets’ health first has always been the right thing to do for Petco. This is both a major step forward for pets and a natural next step on our journey to become a complete partner in total pet wellness. We hope the rest of the pet industry will join us on this path to better health for the pets we love.” This isn’t the first time Petco has taken an industry-leading stance as a champion for pets. In 2014, it became the first national specialty retailer to discontinue the sale of China-made treats following consumer concerns about the safety of such products – and other retailers quickly followed suit. With these new standards, the company aims to raise the bar again for the entire pet retail industry. In January 2019, Petco will begin removing dog and cat foods and treats with artificial ingredients, both from store shelves and ecommerce, with a commitment to complete the process by May 2019. Some of the more than 40 artificial ingredients Petco is eliminating include FD&C Red No. 3, Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA), Butylated hytroxytoluene (BHT), Glycerol tributyrate, and benzaldehyde, among others. “We’re inviting pet food companies to join us on this journey, even working hand- in-hand with some to pursue potential ingredient changes to meet our new stringent ingredient standards,” said Nick Konat, Co-Chief Merchandising Officer for Petco. “In cases where an existing brand is unable to update some or all of their products to meet our criteria by May of 2019, we will not carry either specific products or the brand entirely – and we’ll help pet parents affected by such a change to safely transition to a new food or brand that we believe is healthier for their pet.” The change also reflects one of the top concerns pet parents have today: nutrition. It’s no coincidence that pet food trends follow closely behind human food trends. According to a recent survey**, 87% of pet parents say feeding their pet food made with no artificial flavours, no artificial colours and no artificial preservatives is important to pet’s health and well-being, with 59% of vets agreeing that pet owners should actively seek out foods without those ingredients. Furthermore, 95% of pet parents believe their pet’s diet and nutrition is essential to their pet’s overall health and wellness, yet more than half (56%) say finding healthy products for their pet(s) is confusing, with another 47% reporting that finding healthy products for their pet is difficult. “Pet parents are seeking answers that help assure them they are making the right choices,” said Dr. Whitney Miller, DVM, MBA, Diplomate ACVPM, and Director of Veterinary Medicine at Petco. “We’re stepping out ahead of the industry here because we believe it’s the right thing to do. With Petco’s new nutrition standards, we will only offer food that we believe supports overall pet health and wellness, making the decision process much easier for pet parents.” Petco has worked closely with in-house and consultant veterinarians, nutritionists, and wellness experts to inform its decision and its new standards for pet nutrition. “As a veterinary nutritionist, I choose pet foods that are free of artificial colours, flavours, and preservatives when feeding my own dog and cats,” said Dr. Susan Wynn (DVM, CVA, CVCH, DACVN), a board- certified veterinary nutritionist at BluePearl Veterinary Partners, a national provider of specialty and emergency veterinary care based in Atlanta, GA. “Consumer opinions have more influence on company practices now than ever before, and market surveys have shown that pet owners are concerned about manufacturing and label transparency. Almost 70% of millennials are more likely