February 4, 2020

Sponsored by the American Pet Products Association (APPA), the Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA) and the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC), the 2020 Pet Industry Leadership Summit took place January 13-15 in San Diego, California. The conference brought together heads of manufacturing companies, wholesale distributors and trade organizations to discuss the challenges and issues facing the industry. Presenters and panel conversations covered topics that included legislative issues, the importance of transparency, the enforcement of MAP policy, the challenges of online retail and the industry’s commitment to animal welfare.

Drawing the most attention among attendees was a lunch presentation featuring Dana Brooks, president and CEO of Pet Food Institute (PFI), and Dr. Tim Schell, director of the office of surveillance and compliance for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). They presented an update on the FDA’s investigation into canine dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) and how PFI is responding to reactions from consumers, veterinarians and pet food manufacturers. The audience was informed that, while there are multiple possible causes of DCM, the question of what was responsible for the reported DCM deaths was “not going to be solved anytime soon.”

Pet food is one of the many trending product categories represented in this issue, with cat litter, CBD products and leashes, collars and harnesses among the others that we place in the spotlight. And with February being National Pet Dental Health Month, we’re pleased to help increase the awareness of the importance of proper dental hygiene in pets via an article featuring valuable insight from brands making dental treats and oral care products.

In terms of expert advice, our MANAGEMENT section once again provides you with business strategies that can help set you apart from your competition. Amy Castro dives into what it takes to motivate and empower today’s employees in order for them to better serve your customers. You’ll also find John Mack detailing the value in carrying reptile food and hard goods, Jamie Popper shedding light on essential dog training tools, and Robbi Hess offering advice on how retailers can benefit from branded products.

And with Global Pet Expo taking place this month in Orlando, Florida, many brands are introducing new product lines, releasing additional varieties to existing lineups and even revamping their packaging. You can find 30+ listings for these exciting launches in our Stockroom section. And if you’re attending Global Pet Expo, be sure to stop by our booth (Booth 3670) to meet and speak with our team. As always, in our continuous effort to improve our publication, we welcome your feedback, thoughts and suggestions.

Until then, there’s an enormous amount of news and information in this issue of Pet Age. So what are you waiting for? Read on, and enjoy!

Glenn A. Polyn


[email protected]

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