The Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association held its first ‘face-to-face’ annual convention for two years this week, with guests celebrating 50 years of the organisation.
The event at the Kimpton Hotel in Fitzrovia launched with a focus on sustainability with presentation from Emma Mansbridge, sustainability & environmental policy executive at Food & Drink Federation, who updated guests on FDF’s sustainability goals.
Philip Hambling, head of food and farming at the National Farmer’s Union, highlighted the importance of considering the wider eco-system and the need for animal welfare to be a priority.
Carri Westgarth, senior lecturer in human-animal interaction at the University of Liverpool, then took to the stage to remind the audience of the huge importance of pets in society by highlighting the numerous scientifically proven health benefits of pet interaction.
The breadth of industry experts was extended during the discussion panel. Chaired by Suzanne Jarvis, managing editor of BVA Journals, speakers were joined by experts Amy Whidburn, group head of social value at Pets at Home; David Bowles, head of public affairs at the RSPCA; and Claire Robinson Davies, corporate communications director at Nestle Purina and chair of PFMA’s sustainability committee.
The debate focussed on a keenness to collaborate, break down targets and remember the significance of a ‘one health’ approach where the health of animals, humans and the planet are all linked.
Nicole Paley, deputy chief executive at the PFMA, said: “It was an honour to gather so many experts at our annual convention for an energising look to the future.”