March 1, 2019

Reminded Again!!!

As I sit here in Chicago's O'Hare Airport waiting to board a flight, albeit not too patiently, I find myself reflecting. I was invited to spend the weekend with some amazing people working on a project with Think First National National Injury Prevention. Think First, an amazing non-profit dedicated to "prevent(ing) brain, spinal cord and other traumatic injuries through education, research and advocacy" has a really synergistic mission to The RAWZ Fund: While we look to improve lives once an injury is sustained, Think First works to prevent these injuries.

Through my involvement with our Rawz Fund partners, trying to build a new life myself, and being inspired by Andy's journey, I'm blessed to recognize that while incredibly diverse, survivors of life-changing injuries are still human beings. Like most people we look for experiences that enrich our lives while seeking connection to others. So what does this have to do with minimally processed pet food and why am I writing this blog post?

I always like to say that the simplest way to state RAWZ's mission is that our aim is to improve lives! Sounds grandiose yes, but it is surprisingly simple; my family and the RAWZ team have committed to giving pets minimally processed nutrition options. By eating RAWZ's amazing products pets lives are improved, furthermore, RAWZ supports amazing non-profits enriching the lives of survivors of serious injury.

I can't express my level of gratitude for the life I've been afforded the opportunity to have and the amount of support I've received. It's an honor to be on the RAWZ team as we work to improve the lives of pets and people: We'd love for you and your pet to join us!

January 1, 2019

New Year, better nutrition!

I'm sure we're all familiar with making good old "New Years Resolutions!" While I'm very familiar with the idea, having made quite few (albeit unsuccessful) over the years; I thought I'd ask my wise all-knowing friend Wikipedia for a definition: "A New Year's resolution is a tradition, most common in the Western Hemisphere but also found in the Eastern Hemisphere, in which a person resolves to change an undesired trait or behavior, to accomplish a personal goal or otherwise improve their life."

So what does this have to do with RAWZ? Since all pet lovers would assuredly agree that having a healthy pet brings great joy and improves their lives, by transference giving a pet better health through superior nutrition boosts the human partners' spirits as well. As the makers of our pet's dietary decisions, the opportunity of resolving to improve their health and well-being by feeding "The Next Best Thing to Feeding Raw" falls to us.

A question posed on our website is, "Why RAWZ"?: A great "WHY" could be a resolution for 2019 in that by improving your pet's diet by feeding THE NEXT BEST THING TO FEEDING RAW, both you and your pet's lives get better!

November 1, 2018

Vitamin B shortage!

Sometimes I forget that the whole world doesn't live inside the pet nutrition bubble I often find myself. This is probably a good thing considering that the all-encompassing news stories and trends flooding the market could lead to more confusion! One such topic has been that there is a worldwide-shortage of non-Chinese sourced vitamin B. This months' post will attempt to clarify the issue and let you know how RAWZ is addressing the shortage.

A logical question to ask is what caused this shortage? Since it's not as if the demand instantaneously exploded, as one can guess, there must be a supply issue. Remember though, we're talking about vitamin B that is not produced in China, who's the world's largest producer of such ingredients. No one is saying that China is inherently bad, just that when looking at recent history, it has been difficult ensure the quality and safety of Chinese ingredients.

So what happened? BASF, one of the largest producers of vitamins in Europe, suffered destructive fires at their german facility. This left DSM as the primary producer of Vitamins outside of China. Rather abruptly, DSM shifted all of their production to China. Business is business and a company has many reasons for any choice, but with our commitment to quality we wanted to find a solution while holding firm on our sourcing pledge.

In an effort to give pet owners peace of mind, RAWZ has pledged to not use any ingredients from China. So what have we done? Staying true to our promise, RAWZ has partnered with a Pharmaceutical-grade supplier from Poland to provide your pet with premium nutrition! While some choose to use Vitamin's made in China and simply shipped through Europe, RAWZ remains committed to our word.

October 2, 2018

"Sidewalk Pitch?"

We often hear the term "elevator pitch" thrown around in discussing marketing terms or ideas. Generally, elevator pitch is used to describe a brief, but informative dialogue concerning a product. As I've mentioned, I'm sure countless times at this point, I spend quite a bit of my time at RAWZ's retail partners meeting and discussing RAWZ with pet parents. While I hope my communication concerning animal nutrition is clear and at least improved given the amount of time I've had to work on it, yes, even I must admit, there's always room for improvement :) With this thought in mind, I'd thought I'd use this as an opportunity to do better.

So why do I use the term sidewalk pitch? While I believe the term "elevator pitch" is great in that it implies the brevity of the interaction, with an emphasis on getting to the heart of the matter quickly and concisely. The fact is that most retail locations are single floors, also, I'm most likely out for a walk with Clooney (yes the Silver Fox himself) when I happen to meet other pets and their people; when of course RAWZ always is one of the first things that comes up. None of these interactions take place in an elevator which is where the term sidewalk pitch comes from.

Just last night while walking Clooney through downtown Portsmouth the thought to write this post occurred to me when our path crossed with a couple visiting from Connecticut. As is usually the case, Clooney's handsomeness prompted a conversation about dogs and their own lab at home. Obviously, I wanted to steer the discussion to the benefits of minimally processed nutrition, when as we approached where we would part, I realized my time was limited. I did my best, and while admittedly not completely prepared (ie. sample and product literature in hand, no orange shirt on!), to explain RAWZ's nutritional philosophy and 100% cause basis. Despite my best effort, I felt I could have done better. I thought to myself, and may have said aloud to Cloon, why not write what I should've said in this month's blog post...here goes!

At RAWZ we believe a raw diet when fed correctly is truly the best way to feed a pet; however, feeding raw involves great expense along with food safety issues. Seeing the huge gap between heavily processed dry foods, containing rendered ingredients, available and a raw diet, we saw an opportunity. After working with a team of fantastic animal nutritionists and pet food formulation experts, RAWZ was born! After both Andy and I had been blessed with wonderful recoveries and enriching experiences post life-changing injuries, our family was filled with gratitude. Recognizing how difficult building some semblance of a life after a serious disability can be, we're blessed to be able to donate 100% of RAWZ's profits to our phenomenal non-profit RAWZ FUND partners!

So in one sentence, built on the foundation of a belief in minimally processed nutrition, RAWZ exists to help people and pets live their best lives!