On Amazon’s neverending quest to dominate every single retail category imaginable, the company has settled on its next frontier. According to Bloomberg, Amazon is getting into the pet business and is starting with its own line of dog food.
The pet-centric branch of Amazon’s private-label product line will be called Wag, the last remnants of Wag.com, which Amazon acquired when it bought out Quidsi in 2011. Wag.com now redirects to the landing page for Amazon’s Wag brand of products.
Amazon’s first offering under the new line is its own line of dog food. Intuitively named Wag, the food comes in several different varieties, with primarily protein sources including chicken, beef, salmon, lamb, and turkey. The line comes in puppy or adult formula and is sold in five-, 15-, and 30-pound bags.
The food certainly looks like it is a decent offering for dogs. There’s a lot to keep an eye out for when identifying a good food for your pet, but primary among them is identifying the protein source and making sure it is the primary ingredient. This can be a little misleading as pet food ingredients are listed by weight. When you see a meat like chicken listed first, it looks good, but note that includes water weight. Meat meals have had water and fat removed and weigh less. The Wag line passes ingredients test, with the primary protein source and meat meal as the top two ingredients.
The food line is also labelled as “no grain added,” which suggests they aren’t using foods like corn and wheat as filler ingredients. That’s good news, as dogs don’t really have any use for grains in their metabolisation process.
Amazon’s entry into the pet market will likely be a profitable venture for the company. If there’s one industry in which money can be made, it’s pet food and supplies. Americans are projected to spend more than $72 billion on their pets in 2018, according to the American Pet Products Association. Bloomberg reported Amazon already reportedly made about $2 million last year off of its AmazonBasics branded pet carriers.
While there is some ecommerce presence in the market already — US company PetSmart purchased online pet retailer Chewy.com last year for $3 billion — there is plenty of room for Amazon to muscle its way in. Add the benefit of two-day shipping through Amazon Prime and the company may become a reliable source for pet supplies for a portion of the country’s pet-owning households. [Bloomberg]