ROCKFORD, ILL. — Phelps Pet Products entered Global Pet Expo 2021 on March 24 with big news: an innovative new licensing agreement with The Walt Disney Company. The pet treat co-manufacturer is partnering with Disney to launch a line of themed dog treats, Table Scraps™, featuring iconic characters from widely known Disney and Pixar movies.
The treats not only highlight beloved characters from Disney movies, but also speak to several up-and-coming ingredient and formulation trends taking the pet food and treat market by storm, including plant-based proteins — which Phelps began offering in early 2020 — organic and superfood ingredients, and the use of upcycled food ingredients.
The new Table Scraps line includes eight premium, clean-label jerky dog treats. All treats in this line will be formulated with upcycled ingredients through Phelps’ partnership with the Upcycled Food Association, and real meat at the No. 1 ingredient.
“We put all of our best innovation into these great-tasting jerky treat recipes so there literally is something for everyone,” said Rick Ruffolo, chief executive officer and president of Phelps Pet Products. “The Table Scraps brand name takes its inspiration from the hottest humanization trends including upcycled ingredients in recipes such as USDA Organic Certified chicken and turkey, Marine Stewardship Council-certified salmon bites, superfood mixes, and 100% plant-based, meatless jerky treats.”
Table Scraps will be developed, sourced and manufactured at Phelps Pet Products’ SQF Level II facility in Rockford without the use of wheat, corn, soy, artificial ingredients or meat byproducts.
The line will include two USDA-Certified Organic formulas, three SuperMix recipes, one that is Marine Stewardship Certified (MSC), and two 100% plant-based formulas. The treat formulas will each feature a specific character from one of eight classic Disney films, including Simba from the Lion King, Lilo from Lilo and Stitch, Patch from 101 Dalmatians, Winnie the Pooh, Pluto, Baloo from The Jungle Book, Slinky Dog from Toy Story, and Crush from Finding Nemo.
Patch and Winnie the Pooh represent the two USDA-Certified Organic recipes, available in an Organic Chicken Tender Recipe for Patch with organic carrots and peas, and an Organic Honey Roasted Turkey Recipe for Winnie the Pooh with organic honey and sweet potato.
Baloo will introduce a Smoked Salmon Recipe, featuring MSC salmon as the No. 1 ingredient.
Pluto, Lilo and Simba will present the meat-first superfood recipes with blueberries, cranberries and flaxseed. The Hot Diggity Dog Recipe for Pluto features beef, turkey and pork; the Sweet Hawaiian Bacon Recipe for Lilo includes pork as the No. 1 ingredient; and the Roast Beef Recipe for Simba is formulated with beef as the No. 1 ingredient.
Last but certainly not least, Slinky Dog and Crush will represent the two 100% plant-based protein formulas. Slinky Dog’s Table Scraps are a Meatless Meatloaf Recipe, and Crush’s Table Scraps are a Vegan Surf-N-Turf Recipe. Both formulas will be formulated with upcycled chia seed, flaxseed and sweet potato.
“The creative process for these initial eight SKUs was a collaborative effort with the Disney team,” added Sydney Stewart, consumer marketing specialist at Phelps Pet Products. “In fact, we already are developing a pipeline of new seasonal and everyday products to build on the initial launch success!”
Phelps plans to launch these eight initial Table Scraps formulas in the second quarter of 2021, looking first to e-commerce platforms and following up with brick-and-mortar retail launches later this year and in early 2022. The brick-and-mortar retail launch will include several point-of-sale display options, including power wings, side panels, clip strips and floorstands.
Ruffolo and Stewart told Pet Food Processing that Phelps plans to release additional line extensions as part of its ongoing licensing agreement with Disney. The company also plans to release seasonal products, including Christmas-themed dog treats featuring Olaf from Frozen, collectible tins and an advent calendar.
“The Disney brand brings unprecedent content, awareness, trust, and engagement to the dog treat category, and the Table Scraps line enables Disney fans of all ages to share in the magic with this innovative line of clean-label dog treats!” Ruffolo concluded.
The packaging for Table Scraps dog treat products has yet to be finalized.
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