Plant-Based Pet Food Brand The Pack Closes a Packed £835,000 Seed Round
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Plant-based dog food brand The Pack has closed an £835,000 Seed funding round.
The Seed funding round for the U.K. based pet food brand was led by Scelta Mycofriends B.V., Veg Capital, Kale United, Akoleo and Silicon Valley VC Accel, as well as a range of high-profile angel investors including Simon Newstead, Alicia Robb, Simon Day, Victoria Betoski, and Leo Groenewegen. The round also includes funding from petcare accelerator Leap Ventures, including the Mars Petcare Companion Fund.
The fresh funds follow The Pack’s pre-seed funding round last January that earned backing from footballer Chris Smalling and the celebrity chef duo BOSH!, Henry Firth and Ian Theasby.
“We’re delighted to invest in The Pack,” Jan Kleken of Scelta Mycofriends B.V., said in a statement. “[W]e believe they are creating unique and disruptive plant-based pet products, utilising cutting edge ingredients to offer premium nutrition. This is in line with the mission of Scelta Mycofriends, a subsidiary of Scelta Mushrooms, to develop fungi-based products for animal and human health.”
Alternative pet food
According to The Pack, co-founded by the vegan investment platform Vevolution founders Damien Clarkson and Judy Nadel, the alternative protein pet food category is on the rise and expected to surpass $57 billion by 2032.
“Focusing on creating highly palatable premium products with functional ingredients that have been scientifically proven to aid dog health, whilst endeavouring to offer consumers a price competitive with meat based food is our goal,” Clarkson said.
Clarkson says the company will begin planning additional funding next year. “We are delighted with the group of investors who have supported us with this seed round in challenging market conditions,” Clarkson said. “They bring a wealth of experience and counsel that will help The Pack, steer around challenges in the coming years. For us, 2023 is all about growing distribution both in the U.K .and throughout Europe and launching our new nutritionally complete oven-baked products into the market and making them a must-have for every dog parent’s cupboard.”
Rachel Sheppard Director of Mars Petcare accelerator program Leap Ventures says alternative protein diets for pets will play a key role in achieving a healthier planet in the future. “Therefore, we are so proud to invest in companies like The Pack through our Leap Venture Studio program,” she said.
Pet food’s carbon pawprint
Pet food’s carbon footprint is significant; a recent study estimated dry diets could be responsible for up to 2.9 percent of CO2 emissions and up to 1.2 percent of agricultural land use.
Conventional pet food has also been linked to increased health risks for dogs because it’s often made from low-quality animal products, fillers, and artificial ingredients. The Pack says its expert-formulated meals are nutritionally complete as well as being more sustainable than conventional.
The new funding will support the launch of The Pack’s dried dog food early next year. The company has already launched what it says is the world’s first plant-based wet meat stew for dogs. The wet food earned praise from the owners of the dog influencer Dolly Pawton, who struggles with inflammatory bowel disease.
“We are obsessed with helping dogs be healthy and thrive on plant diets,” Nadel said. “For us, this means focusing on great nutrition from a balanced source of plant-based proteins. We started this company to give dog parents better choices than what existed before. We have chosen a solution focused on taste and high-quality nutrition, as we believe this is the approach that will lead to healthy dogs and long-term success for the business.”