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Petfood R&D Showcase featured “Treats, Toppers and Inclusions” theme

Petfood R&D Showcase took place on October 9-11, 2018 at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas. The 2018 edition, featured a new and exclusive theme, “Treats, Toppers and Inclusions.”  

This interactive workshop featured three days of networking with leading suppliers, researchers and pet food industry professionals, plus scientific presentations and interactive demonstrations focusing on the use of treats, toppers and inclusions in pet food.

Why is this important now?

In the market today the fastest growing categories are pet treats, pet food with inclusions, and indulgence items to place on the top of the pets’ foods.

Treats: When it comes to treats, the sky is the limit. Baked treats still seem to dominate the market, however, jerkies, freeze dried snacks and various preserved animal parts are gaining in popularity and market share.

Inclusions: Some treats are being marketed as items to enhance foods by mixing into kibble-based pet food as “inclusions.” Example inclusions include dried fruits and vegetables, freeze dried meat, and extruded/baked bits.

Toppers: A new expanded segment in the industry, toppers are intended to supplement pet food with functional ingredients and in some cases are used simply for attractive visual effect or added fun. Toppers increase options for pet owners to interact with their pets.

This year’s Petfood R&D Showcase provided attendees with interactive, engaging, and in some applications hands-on experiences with new technologies for producing these extra-nutritional pet food forms. Sponsors created stations for participants to explore the process of producing highly fortified additions for pet food incorporation, learn about unique ingredients to consider in these specialty applications, and explore new equipment, fortification, visual enhancement, mixing and blending systems, packaging, and other aspects of this movement toward higher involvement food products.

In addition to the interactive demonstrations, Petfood R&D Showcase featured the latest cutting-edge research that complements these new food formats and share details about the science behind discoveries that participants will be able to incorporate into their product offerings.

Incredible Value! Participants received:
• Product samples from sponsored activities
• Technical reports from research presented
• Market updates and business best practices
• Contact and specifications from suppliers
• Certificate of completion and continuing education credit (for applicable groups)
• News and leading technology
• Ideas and tools to implement into future products
• Access to student talent

The event is brought to you by a joint academic-industry partnership between WATT Global Media (Petfood Industry Magazine and Petfood Forum) and the Pet Food Program at Kansas State University.