Brighton-based start-up W’ZIS? is aiming to liven up what it calls the last remaining ‘dull’ FMCG category, pet food, with its meat-free treats.
The challenger brand has created a range of unique, all-natural, plant-based treats – which are also grain and gluten-free and low in calories. Each treat is presented in two eye-catching colours.
The firm’s name is a truncated sonic play on what owners say to excite their dogs – “What’s this?” – and it’s aiming to create a sensory overload for both dogs, owners and stockists alike.
The W’ZIS initial SKU line-up include three different flavours of mini, one calorie, treats (‘Postman & Roast’, ‘Slipper & Biscuit’, ‘Lamp Post & Chips’) that are packaged in refillable, screw-top tins; two W-shaped ‘Dubya’ chew bars with gaps that can be filled with cheese or peanut butter and two ‘Fang Chews’. Shaking the treat tins produces a suitably “W’zis?!” sound!
Each treat features a version of the brand’s ‘fang’ logo in various sizes and forms – the W-shape of which also helps to clean a dog’s teeth. Another health benefit lies in a relative lack of protein (and purine) in any of the range compared to meat treats – thereby reducing stress on a dog’s kidneys.
Citing research from Mintel that reported 34% of British dog food buyers believe it’s good for dogs to regularly have a plant-based meal instead of meat, W’ZIS? Co-Founder Drew Griffiths said: “There’s nothing like our range in this ever-expanding market – either in look, style or content. So the time is right – dog ownership’s up massively, vegan dog food and treats are growing at 12% and we’re eager to get our teeth into the category. Even if owners aren’t taking their dogs completely vegan, our range represents a healthy, low-calorie, alternative to the meat and offal treats out there. Call it flexitarianism for our furry friends, if you will.”
W’ZIS Mini Treats, x100 in a tin, 50g, £5.95rrp; ‘Dubya’ Chews, x8, £9.95rrp; ‘Fang’ Chews, x12, £9.95rrp; Mini Treat Triple Tin Gift Box (three 50g tins, plus 100g of refills for each), £27.50rrp.