Pick of the Litter
Jean Broders, senior brand manager for Kent Pet Group, discusses how World’s Best Cat Litter has been able to cement its position atop the natural litter category.
Pet Business: As the natural litter segment continues to grow more competitive, how does World’s Best Cat Litter maintain its position as a category leader?
Jean Broders: World’s Best Cat Litter is leading the natural litter category by continuing to offer consumers a litter solution that truly works, plus gives the added benefit of being natural and a safe choice for cats and their owners. Our litter has a tremendous, loyal customer following. Once consumers try our product, they continue to use it and recommend it to their friends.
What makes our litter unique is being able to use the concentrated power of corn to maintain a cleaner litter box. The bottom line is there is less hassle and you use less litter, which means savings to consumers.
PB: Tell us about the new Advanced Zero Mess litter that World’s Best Cat Litter is introducing. What are some of the key features?
Broders: Zero Mess guarantees fast and easy cleanup with two times better clumping and two times more odor control, so there’s less mess with less wasted litter. It is also lightweight, 99 percent dust-free and flushable. It combines the concentrated power of corn with super-absorbent plant fibers. It’s available in two formulas—Zero Mess and Zero Mess Pine Scented—and three bag sizes. It will be shipping in early spring and is exclusive to the pet specialty channel.
PB: How can pet specialty retailers increase the sales of natural cat litter in their stores? How can they stand out from other retailers competing in the category?
Broders: Independent retailers can continue to beat their competition in other channels by offering that extra customer service, especially through education. It’s key that they accept the training that is being offered to them by brands and take advantage of all resources that are available, such as videos, training materials, POS materials and rewards programs. Utilize displays that allow the natural litters to be noticed and put them right up front in the store. Work with brands to develop unique store events, which will keep their premium shoppers coming to their stores. World’s Best Cat Litter offered support for National Cat Day and Shop Local Saturday—both events to support retailers and reward consumers.
These unique ideas will set these retailers apart from big box stores and entice consumers to keep coming back to their neighborhood pet stores for that extra-special treatment and savings on products.
PB: Last year, Kent Pet Group launched a major expansion project at its Muscatine, Iowa-based manufacturing facility for World’s Best Cat Litter. How is the expansion going? What inspired the project?
Broders: Our expansion project is on schedule and progressing as planned. The demand for World’s Best Cat Litter keeps increasing both in the United States and internationally. This expansion will allow us to keep pace with growing customer demand for our litter and future innovations.
PB: Tell us about the GiveLitter program. How does the program work? How does it fit into Kent Pet Group’s overall approach to supporting pet-related charities?
Broders: We started GiveLitter six years ago with a simple idea: empower cat-loving fans everywhere to help donate free litter to the hardworking shelters that need it most. Our donations have been large, but the impact on the lives of shelter cats is larger. And our work isn’t done. Our 2017 program will focus on a partnership with five select shelters, allowing us the opportunity to partner at a deeper level and reach their new adoptive pet parents. To date, we’ve donated over a half-million pounds of litter, which equates to supplying over 75,000 cats with a month’s worth of litter. GiveLitter will continue to be a focus of ours in the years to come.