The Natural Cat Food Throwdown: Wellness Steps Into the Ring

I had to track down this contender in the Natural Cat Food Throwdown.  As part of the Throwdown, I emailed a number of natural cat food manufacturers to determine which food to switch Furball to based on the advice of his Holistic Vet who said a high protein/low grain diet would be beneficial for controlling his struvite crystals.  Whew!  That was a run-on sentence.

Anyway, I contacted Wellness about their CORE canned cat food to ask them where it sources its ingredients and processes its cat food.  I also asked about their business’ green practices.  In response to my email, I was directed to call their customer service number, which I finally did this morning.  Very interesting…

I always had the impression that Wellness was a smaller company, but it felt like I was calling the call centre for the Home Shopping Network.  The person who answered the phone was polite and courteous, but she spoke at a very rapid and efficient clip and I could hear a lot of noise in the background like a telemarketing centre.  In retrospect, the signs that Wellness has been bought out by a larger company are pretty evident — package redesign and a slick website.

THE JUDGE’S VERDICT

Wellness is very focused on food safety, but completely oblivious to sustainable business practices.  The customer service representative went into great length at fast-talker speed about where the ingredients were sourced, tested and manufactured.  However, when I asked her if Wellness had any green business practices, she said, “Elaborate for me.  I don’t understand.”  I gave examples such as recycling and clarified that I was asking if Wellness does anything to minimize its environmental impact.  She said, “Not at all.  Not at Wellness.”

Well, that doesn’t sit that well with me.  Wellness is barred from entering the ring for the Natural Cat Food Throwdown!

In case you’re still interested, here are the pros and cons:

Pluses

  • Processing is done in North America.  Plants are located in New Jersey, Kansas, Utah and Canada.
  • All ingredients are human-grade.
  • Vendors are required to test ingredients for “everything” such as melamine and cyanuric acid.  When Wellness receives the ingredients, they test them again.
  • Ingredients are pesticide and hormone free
  • All ingredients with the exception of taurine and vitamin C are from the U.S.  Lamb and venison are from New Zealand.

Minuses

  • Menu Foods has facilities in New Jersey, Kansas and Canada.  This would lead me to conclude that CORE is processed by Menu Foods.
  • Uh, WTF on the green policy?  Most companies are at least cognizant enough to give it lip-service.  Wellness clearly does not care.

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Green Little Cat is the only blog that's all about eco-friendly ideas for cats and cat lovers. This blog is a labor of love, created by Holly Tse, author of Make Your Own Cat Toys.
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