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Natural pet products category shows steady growth

BY Rebecca Haughey

ROCKVILLE, Md. – Big changes are underway in the market for pet goods, according to "Natural, Organic and Eco-Friendly Pet Products in the U.S.," a recently released study from market research firm Packaged Facts.

Hill’s is reformulating Science Diet as a natural product line, and Nestlé Purina is coming on strong with Purina One Beyond. In addition, Walmart has launched Pure Balance as it first natural store brand.

In natural pet food aisles, the hottest product trends include grain-free and human grade, taking superpremium natural pet food to new levels — and price points. In the pet care aisle, eco-friendly products with sustainable packaging and production processes abound. U.S. retail sales of natural pet products totaled $4.1 billion in 2012, according to a Packaged Facts estimate, reflecting a compound annual growth rate of 17% over the 2008-2012 period. Annual sales growth has consistently been in the double digits for the category.

Helping underpin this steady increase in sales is consumer demand for products perceived to be safer — a pet owner priority spurred by the spring 2007 pet food recalls. According to Packaged Facts’ August 2012 Pet Owner Survey, 38% of pet owners believe that natural/organic brand pet products are often better than standard national brand products, and 63% are very concerned about the safety of the pet products they buy.

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Walgreens launches environmentally friendly store brand Ology, formulated free of ‘harmful chemicals’

BY Michael Johnsen

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Monday launched Ology, a nationally accessible and affordable brand formulated to be free of harmful chemicals. Exclusive to Walgreens’ family of companies, the Ology brand features a line of baby and personal care products as well as household cleaners, the company stated.

The new brand would fall in line with legislation presently under consideration — The Safe Chemicals Act — that if passed, would require that ingredients be determined safe for human health before being used in everyday consumer products. The pending legislation has led several industry leaders to pledge to remove potentially harmful and carcinogenic chemicals from several offerings over the next several years.

“Walgreens is proud to be leading the charge by providing Ology," stated Joe Magnacca, president of daily living products and solutions for Walgreens. “Ology reflects our dedication to innovation, our constant drive to improve our customers’ quality of life, and our ongoing commitment to help people get, stay and live well.”

Select Ology brand products are available at Walgreens and Duane Reade locations, as well as online. Items will be available nationwide by early November and are value-priced compared to conventional formulas of leading brands.

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GE donates $1.1 million to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts

BY Michael Johnsen

 FAIRFIELD, Conn. — In response to Hurricane Sandy, GE on Monday gave $1.1 million to support relief and recovery efforts throughout the Northeast of the United States. The American Red Cross Disaster Relief Fund was the recipient of $1 million, GE reported. The additional $100,000 dollars was given to the United Way of America for them to direct to local communities.

GE’s contribution to both organizations provides immediate support to disaster response efforts and brings much needed relief to all of those affected by the hurricane. Additionally, GE’s Volunteer Councils are engaged with local nonprofits to also respond to needs on the ground.

“While state and local governments as well as relief organization are still in the middle of determining the exact needs as a result of Hurricane Sandy, we have employees, customers and neighbors who have lost or damaged homes, or who are still living without power,” stated Bob Corcoran, VP GE Foundation. “Through our partner relief organizations, GE can help those in need in the aftermath, and we will.”

In addition to these contributions, the GE Foundation supports disaster relief through a $1 million grant to the American Red Cross Annual Disaster Giving Program. This program ensures an immediate response to meet the needs of people who are affected by all disasters. GE also helps local communities through our more than $8 million contribution to 500 United Way organizations throughout the United States and in a few other countries.

 

 

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