San Diego’s The Honest Kitchen lands $150M to grow ‘human grade’ pet food brand for cats and dogs

The Honest Kitchen, a San Diego maker of human-grade pet meals, has landed $150 million from Monarch Alternate Funds to strengthen producing, internet marketing, product or service enhancement and sustainability initiatives.

Established in 2002 by Lucy Postins, The Truthful Kitchen area promises to be the very first pet food manufacturer to get U.S. Foods and Drug Administration acceptance to simply call alone “human grade” — indicating its products are produced in the exact generation services, and with the identical caliber of care and elements, as human foodstuff.

That is in contrast with classic bulk pet meals, which is viewed as “feed grade” and not manufactured in a way that’s intended for use by people.

“In the previous yr or so, we have found this remarkable surge in need as folks have come to be additional informed of pet wellness through the pandemic,” stated Postins in an job interview. “Working from dwelling, they are looking at some of these chronic wellness conditions like itchy pores and skin, digestive upset and ear challenges. There is absolutely a tangible url between very good food items and fantastic wellbeing.”

The Honest Kitchen Founder Lucy Postins

The Sincere Kitchen area Founder Lucy Postins

(Courtsey of The Genuine Kitchen)

According to the American Pet Solutions Association, U.S. consumers put in $109.6 billion on their animals in 2021 — up almost 15 p.c about pre-pandemic pet investing in 2019.

Now, The Straightforward Kitchen area employs about 70 personnel. It sells a lot more than 170 variations of canine and cat foods products and treats, which include dry, damp and dehydrated offerings. Its merchandise are sold on line by means of Amazon and Chewy. They are also dispersed at 6,000 retail suppliers together with Petco, Pet Provides As well as, Sprouts, particular Whole Foods and lots of independent pet and feed outlets. The enterprise said income enhanced 40 per cent final year.

“We’re at a pivotal position for the business enterprise soon after quite a few vital wins last year, together with our new producing facility in Topeka and entering a totally new phase with our human-quality cat portfolio start,” reported Chief Govt Michael Greenwell in a assertion. “We seem ahead to partnering with Monarch to push the brand name even further, growing our human-quality generation capabilities and achieving much more pets.”

Element of the new investment decision will enable assistance Environmental, Social & Governance — or ESG — initiatives, additional Postins. The corporation transitioned to a community gain corporation and has pledged to deliver social superior through charitable offering, as nicely as environmentally sensitive packaging and personnel range.

Monarch manages about $9.5 billion in assets and has offices in New York and London. Its expense in The Genuine Kitchen is a convertible note that gives it a minority ownership stake.

With the financial commitment, Monarch Controlling Principal Patrick Fallon and Bob Rubin, a pet food market veteran and founder of Breakaway Advisors, will join The Truthful Kitchen’s board of administrators.

Postins declined to disclose valuation. She noted that current fairness buyers Alliance Client Advancement and White Road Investments, which have backed the company considering that 2011, carry on as fairness investors.