JustFoodForDogs, a fresh dog food kitchen operating in stand-alone stores, select Petco locations and veterinary pantries and clinics across the United States, has increased production and distribution to meet increased demand amid COVID-19 concerns.
The company is continuing to produce and distribute pet foods following the government’s guidance for animal food manufacturing companies to remain open throughout the health crisis.
JustFoodForDogs reported seeing an increase in orders, with record-high sales in 75% of the kitchens and pantries it operates in the United States. The number of calls received by the company has doubled since February, and e-commerce orders are up 400% compared to the same time frame last year.
“We saw a massive spike in demand both online and in our kitchens, pantries and retail partners,” said Carey Tischler, chief executive officer at JustFoodForDogs. “As we source our own restaurant-grade ingredients and prepare, cook and package it ourselves in our own kitchens, we have been able to meet those demands with very few delays or stock issues during this crisis.”
The company has added overnight production shifts to keep up with demand.
Additionally, the company opened a 21,000-square-foot master kitchen in New Castle, Del. last week, its first location in the state. The facility is expected to produce up to 30,000 lbs of human-grade, fresh pet food daily specifically for distribution to other JustFoodForDogs locations along the East Coast, according to the company.
Pet food production at the new Delaware facility began last week, shortly following its opening on March 23.
The initial plan was to hire 50 employees for the Delaware location over the course of one year, but the company will now hire 50 employees within the first month to keep up with increased demand.
“Just last week we began cooking in Rey’s Kitchen, our east coast master kitchen, so we can meet the increasing demand,” Tischler added. “We have also added additional shifts in Simon’s Kitchen (our master kitchen in Irvine, Calif.) and our retail kitchens are cooking around the clock for pets.”
Taking precautions, JustFoodForDogs has implemented a no-touch policy for pick-up and delivery orders. In addition, the company is offering free same-day delivery for eligible locations on orders over $50.
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