6 Apr 2023
Exploring the Pet Food Industry: Founder of Fresh for Paws, Ms.Srishti Bhatia in an interview with Sunil Dcosta founder of Petzcareindia on Natural Nutrition and Healthy Pets.
1) Explain your Journey into the pet food industry?
Srishti Bhatia: Our family pet Vanilla - a sweet. loving Labrador is the center of everybody's attention at home. I have always been very involved and particular with her diet since was a kid. The curiosity fuelled the idea of doing the same for others' pets too and that is when I started studying Canine Nutrition and experimenting at home. After almost 1.5 years of experiments and study, Fresh For Paws came into being in June 2018.
But before Fresh For Paws kicked off, I enrolled in the Company Secretary's course post my graduation from Delhi University. However, after clearing the Executive level, I decided I didn't want to wait any longer and started my own venture. I chose to get into a new and unfamiliar space purely because of my passion for dogs and pet care. I received a lot of positive feedback and support from my family to pursue what I loved doing, that I have received, I have been able to make my dream a reality.
We started Fresh For Paws in June 2018 after multiple tests, experiments. With growing income, urbanization, and increasing health awareness, pet owners are shifting to premium and natural foods that are free of genetically modified organisms, artificial colors, and flavors and aid in promoting the good health of pets.
It took a lot of research and development to come up with the recipes and final products acceptable to the market.
Our mission is to create awareness and move pet parents to a natural approach when it comes to feeling their pets' food and treats.
2) How is the response from the pet owners across India?
Srishti Bhatia: Fresh For Paws is available through both offline and online channels. We have a tie- up with pet stores all across India and we are available on major pet centric marketplaces. Apart from that we are available on Amazon, Flipkart and launching on Blink It very soon. We are collaborating with other players through our distributors. We also have our own website and one can easily order from it.
3) More players are venturing into the pet food industry in India? What are the Nutritional benefits from Fresh for Paws’ meals?
Srishti Bhatia: It’s true, the pet food space is very crowded. Nutrition plays an important role in everyone’s life. Same goes for pets. If they are getting the right diet with high quality ingredients they will be healthy and live a better life.
Fresh For Paws' Meals are Grain - Free, Complete & Balanced. We offer Vegan, Vegetarian & Non - Vegetarian meals. We have meal toppers and treats as well. The products offer a lot of benefits to pets in terms of their Digestive Health, Immunity, Heart & Brain Health. The meals are right in Protein, Healthy Fats and have minimal Carbohydrates. The meals offer a lot of vitamins & minerals which contribute to healthy vision and supple skin & coat. They have anti- inflammatory, anti- fungal, and anti - microbial properties. Our products offer numerous benefits. These are just a few. The meals contribute to the overall health of pets so that they stay happy and healthy.
4) Are the available products suitable for all ages of Dogs ?
Srishti Bhatia: Our products are suitable for dogs three months and above and all ages. Our Non - Vegetarian Range is suitable for cats too including the Meal Toppers.
5) Kindly explain the distribution channel or is it only online? Any social media activities, event participation, etc? How can a pet owner get your product?
Srishti Bhatia: Fresh For Paws is available through both offline and online channels. We have a tie- up with pet stores all across India and we are available on major pet centric marketplaces. Apart from that we are available on Amazon, Flipkart and launching on Blink It very soon. We are collaborating with other players through our distributors. We also have our own website (www.freshforpaws.com ) and one can easily order from it. We participate in a lot of events as well to create awareness about our products.
We believe in creating awareness first and then educating pet parents about our products. We have been doing intensive performance marketing and in store marketing. We work closely with our distributors to provide them all the support they need to market the products. We distribute our products through distributors, retailers and online market players and are working to grow our D2C reach as well.
6) Is the product a ready-to-eat product? Is it wet food or dry food? How fast do the products need to be consumed after opening?
Srishti Bhatia: Fresh For Paws' Meals are Grain - Free, Complete & Balanced. We offer Vegan, Vegetarian & Non - Vegetarian meals. We have meal toppers and treats as well.
Yes, the meals are in ready - to - eat form and can be consumed directly, just tear and pour it into your pet’s bowl. Our meals are in semi - solid form.
Fresh For Paws' products can be stored up to two years from the date of manufacturing. However, once the packet is opened you will have to consume the same immediately or store in the fridge like we store our leftover food.
Since our products are shelf stable and do not require any special needs to get stored, it's easy to transport the same.
7) How do you address the price point when it comes to pet owners? Since we all operate in a price-sensitive market in India. Any new package size?
Srishti Bhatia: Our price points are at power with the other brands of the same range. We come under the premium category of pet food. We have seen pet parents do both bother much if it benefits their pets and makes them healthy. They don’t mind spending a little extra to make sure the pet is getting the right nutrition.
We have two meal sizes right now - 100 gram & 300 gram.
8) Are there any expansion plans for the Cat category?
Srishti Bhatia: We already have 4 non-vegetarian meals along with the meal toppers which are suitable for cats. However, we do want to expand and have a separate segment for cats.
9) What are the best sellers in the Indian Market?
Srishti Bhatia: These are our best sellers -
Our best sellers would be our Peanut Butter and the Non-Vegetarian meals. Our Peanut Butter has been our star product since we launched and pets simply love it. Our Non - Vegetarian meals - Chicken Pot Pie, Fish Supper, Lamb On The Go and Wholesome Goat Feast has been getting attention and positive feedback from the market since day one. Our vegetarian range is coming up too as there are a lot of vegetarian households in India and that helps us to cater to them as well.
Choose Fresh, Choose Fresh For Paws