Treats in a Doggy Waste Bag, and Other Things to Watch Out For
This weeks post comes to you with some pretty strong emotion on my part. For any of us out there that truly care about and take pride in providing our furry family members with the absolute best that we can give them, this is a must read. Please, as with all of our posts both past and present, feel free to comment and share when you are finished.
As you read this, there are any number of ‘made from home’ operations baking and preparing homemade, and hopefully healthy dog treats in preparation for the upcoming weekends events and fulfillment of pending orders. The competition in this industry is fierce and growing exponentially by the month. Competition that is gladly welcomed and appreciated, as it is the cornerstone of our economy and it motivates us to constantly work to stay on top of our game. What we do not, and can not appreciate, are those that chose to enter the arena but not follow the rules.
What do I mean? Take a look at one example:
What you are looking at is a dog treat that we purchased this past weekend at a local event. I will not name the event, nor the bakery as I do not feel that it is necessary in order to convey my point. The treat was presented to us by the bakeries employee (not the proprietor, they were not present) in the purple doggy waste bag as pictured above. There are several issues and questions that immediately arise when presented with this item, my main concern being, is it safe?
The pet food, feed and treat industry is heavily regulated by each individual states Dept of Agriculture. Some argue that more regulation is needed, and to a degree they may be right. To be a legal business entity in NYS and be allowed to operate as a bakery selling dog treats at most markets, fairs and trade shows you have to be registered (as a DBA, LLC, Corporation, Etc) and insured. In order to be insured in NYS as a bakery that sells dog treats, you have to have a guaranteed analysis done on each of the different treats that you offer. The guaranteed analysis then helps to determine the cost for registering your treats with the Dept of Agriculture, which is currently $100 per unique product.
What is my point?
As I prepare to publish this post, my business partner is downstairs figuring out our budget and payment schedule for all of the financial and legal obligations that we have coming up. The cost involved is required in order to keep us compliant with all of the regulations that keep us open and able to serve you, our devoted customers. We are preparing to pay to file our LLC, our insurance premium, the NYS Dept of Agriculture, restock inventory and begin getting our applications and fees out for a new market and event season. That is all just this month!
Back to the treat pictured above before closing. A mandatory requirement for selling dog treats in NYS is that all product be properly labeled. This protects both the business owner, the retailer (if selling wholesale) and the customer. Every label is REQUIRED to include the following information:
Ingredient statement (a list of all of the ingredients)
Net weight (minimum weight of your package)
Your Bakery contact info (name, address, phone number)
Minimum crude protein %
Minimum crude fat %
Maximum moisture %
Maximum crude fiber %
You might notice that the photo above carries no label at all. Therefore I immediately have to question its claim as “all natural” “organic” “dog treat” and so on. Right?
In the interest of full disclosure, I did reach out to this particular company and was told by them that “…my treats are registered with the (omitted) Dept. of Agriculture and they have been analyzed.”
Okay, good to know. Then why cut corners, if not to put a few more bucks in your pocket? It would be reasonable to assume that someone that is not taking the time to comply and invest in the necessary cost of doing business, perhaps is also not completely invested in your dogs health and well-being, in my opinion.
Be aware folks. We do not claim to be anything that we are not. What we are is honest and trustworthy. We have a passionate and loving owner that cares about you and your furry friends just as much as she does her own and will go above and beyond to provide you with the best possible customer experience for both of you. Our labeling will always be updated and accurate. One of my tasks is to periodically double check and research all of the ingredients that we include in our treats. We even go so far as to be sure that our packaging and labeling is environmentally friendly and made in the USA.
We are passionate business owners and dog lovers. Our success relies solely on our ability to serve you and keep you happy. We are very pleased that you have chosen Fetch! Gourmet Dog Treats and look forward to a pawsome future together!