Leadership, mentorship, community, and advocacy work. These are the pillars that inspired the John and Kelly Ayres Philanthropy Award and the tenets of all the Canadian Pet Community Awards. Just over a year ago, we introduced the John and Kelly Ayers Philanthropy Award in our ongoing campaign to highlight the outstanding work our Pets Canada members do on behalf of our sector and those we all serve. The award focuses beyond day-to-day business activities and concentrates on a team’s efforts to foster a responsible industry that positively impacts pets, their families, and the environment.
To date our award categories cover retail, pet services, and sales representatives. What we have added is a category to honor the collective good work of teams at manufacturing and distributing companies, who make bettering their community and pet families (animal and human together) a priority. A committee reviewed the submissions and chose Petcurean as our first recipient of the John and Kelly Ayers Philanthropy Award.
“We are truly honoured to be the recipient of Pets Canada’s first-ever John and Kelly Ayres Philanthropy Award, which seeks to recognize the important work being done to support the pet community through advocacy, mentorship, and more,” said Christine Mallier, Sustainability and Community Relations Manager at Petcurean. “Petcurean is a trusted name for pet nutrition and we are dedicated to providing year-round support to the communities we serve both locally and globally. Whether through promoting responsible pet ownership, taking meaningful steps to advance sustainability in the industry, or coordinating a major pet food donation to animals in need, we strive to impact real change within our company and the greater industry.”
We hope you are inspired, as we were, by the story of Petcurean’s great work.
As a Canadian business with more than 20 years of experience, Petcurean is dedicated to providing year-round support to the communities they serve both locally and around the world. Sustainability and community support are woven directly into the fabric of the company. Under the guidance of their dedicated Sustainability and Community Relations Manager, Christine Mallier, the company has undertaken numerous initiatives in support of animal, community, and sector wellness.
Team Community Care
Petcurean’s belief in community support involves their entire staff. Employees get together as a group throughout the year to give back to their communities, through initiatives like the Earth Day River Clean Up with the Skwah First Nation community, shelter clean ups, and through the Salvation Army’s Adopt a Family (at Thanksgiving) and Adopt a Senior events (at Christmas). To further empower their team, in the spring of this year, the company announced that all their employees would now receive 20 hours of paid time annually to volunteer in their communities, taking the company’s community support commitment to the next level. With the addition of this paid volunteer benefit, employees support their communities in ways that are closest to their hearts.
Advocating for Change
Protecting the environment through sustainability is a focus for the company as it implements measurable change within the industry. They are achieving this by reducing resource usage and waste. In 2022 they became the first company in the premium pet food industry to achieve carbon-neutral status for Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions. Initiatives undertaken to reach this milestone include:
- switching to hybrid vehicles for their leased fleet,
- reducing electricity usage, and reducing heat and A/C usage,
- diverting over 1,300 lbs of food in 2022 from the landfill by redirecting their expired Quality Assurance samples to local compost,
- manufacturing in Europe for their Europe and Middle East markets to reduce GHG emissions from transportation, and
- implementing an Environmental Management System (EMS), which covers waste generation, energy and water usage, and carbon emissions.
Once again taking a leadership role,in 2022, Petcurean was part of the inaugural group of five companies to sign the Pet Sustainability Coalition (PSC) Packaging Pledge. In doing so, they have committed to transitioning their existing bags to fully recyclable bags by 2025. They have also made excellent progress when the company transitioned from cans to Tetra Pak cartons for its Go! Solutions and Now Fresh wet food recipes, and are expecting to launch new recyclable kibble bags this year. Taking their commitment even further, Petcurean also launched its own Supplier Code of Conduct, which holds all major suppliers accountable for specific social and environmental performance, with 100% of suppliers signed to date.
Responsible Pet Ownership Initiatives
As part of the Company’s efforts to promote responsible pet ownership, Petcurean publishes blogs through their social channels on a variety of topics that promote responsible pet ownership. The social media influencers that their brands partner with also use their reach to promote responsible pet ownership amongst their followers. Always on the look out for opportunities to support the important work that others in the community are doing around responsible pet ownership, the company supports events such as the Vet to Pet Mobile Clinic which conducted a number of low-cost/free spay/neuter clinics for the Yekooche First Nation, and other First Nation communities in the Fort St. James area of BC. Petcurean donated over 17,000 meals for dogs and cats in need to support this amazing community effort.
With sustainability increasingly becoming an important consideration for pet parents, Petcurean uses its industry-leading reputation to promote a more sustainable lifestyle among pet parents. According to the Pet Care Health in 2022 report by FMCG Gurus, over 42% of pet owners say they want to purchase pet food with sustainably sourced ingredients. Petcurean’s team members take every opportunity to encourage pet parents who are environmentally conscious to consider pet foods with alternative proteins, such as those that are plant-based or insect-based. Their own efforts include developing recipes featuring sustainable insect protein as the primary ingredient. Their limited-ingredient grain-free recipes are made with single-source Black Soldier Fly Larvae, and offer an eco-friendly, protein source that uses 80% less water and land than chicken in its production.
Mentoring the Future
Petcurean gives generously of its time to mentor up-and-coming pet businesses. One way is through the Company’s participation in the Pet Sustainability Coalition’s (PSC) Sustainability Leaders Cohort. This is a monthly meeting where Christine Mallier, Petcurean’s Sustainability Manager, has the opportunity to share best practices and lessons learned around sustainability issues, with smaller or less-experienced companies in the pet industry. Christine is also a member of the PSC’s Packaging Pledge Cohort – this is an additional opportunity to mentor and lend support. Additionally, Petcurean’s sales team routinely provides training to store staff when they visit. The company uses every opportunity to help its retail partners succeed.
Petcurean’s award submission embodied so much of what we learned from John and Kelly Ayres. It is a deep belief in being a responsible corporate citizen, engaged in the well-being of a team, and community. A company that found ways to turn their beliefs into effective action. Thank you to the team at Petcurean for being a wonderful example of how pet businesses can have a positive impact.
There are so many more stories to tell about Canada’s pet business sector. Once again our congratulations and your heartfelt thanks, go out to all the nominees and winners of this year’s Canadian Pet Community Awards. Help us continue to celebrate our leaders in 2024 and stay tuned for the next round of nominations, coming in early spring.