Thailand has emerged as the world’s third-largest pet food exporter, behind the United States and Germany. The country boasts exceptional infrastructure and access to top-notch raw materials, making it a formidable player in the industry.
Notably, sustainable pet food brands such as JAIKLA have risen to prominence. Distinguished by their utilisation of insect protein and natural ingredients in their dog treats, they stand apart from competitors. JAIKLA is a trailblazer in sustainability within the pet food industry, setting an example by addressing environmental concerns not only through their use of recyclable packaging.
“Our aim is to become an aspirational brand where pets become heroes, affecting positive changes simply by being fuelled by insect protein. This will inspire our customers to adopt more sustainable behaviour. Some customers even return the treat bags to us as they want to properly separate waste. And it is these small victories that mean the world to us,” says Ittikorn Thepmani, co-founder of JAIKLA.
Insect protein offers numerous advantages in terms of sustainability. It requires minimal resources, such as soil and water, resulting in significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, insects play a vital role in upcycling food surplus through a closed-loop insect farming system, transforming leftovers into valuable nutrition. JAIKLA collaborates with leading supermarkets in Thailand to collect food waste, which is then given to natural decomposers, such as black soldier fly larvae, effectively addressing the waste problem while promoting a circular economy.
Thepmani further highlights Thailand’s advantages for insect farming. The country’s tropical climate is ideal, and it is home to skilled entomologists and a population that embraces insect consumption. Meanwhile, Europe and America are witnessing a surge in plant- and yeast-based pet food innovations. Furthermore, countries including South Korea and China are showing a strong interest in premium pet food due to the thriving pet market in the Asian region.
“Our customers, both locals and international tourists, adore our products. Locals keep coming back, showing unwavering support, while international tourists love to buy our products as souvenirs. Moreover, several international entrepreneurs have approached us to distribute our products in their countries, including South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Japan, and Switzerland,” says Thepmani.
JAIKLA works closely with veterinarians to ensure their crunchy dog treats offer an alternative protein source that pets can enjoy without suffering from allergies. Their flagship product, Happy Vitamins Dog Treats, is in high demand. Next year, they plan to introduce pet food made from black soldier flies, a development that promises to be a game-changer in the industry.
“Many believe that as individuals, we can’t create significant changes, but in reality, every consumer choice we make holds meaning,” says Thepmani. “Opting for certain products can contribute to making the world a better place. We wholeheartedly support the idea of conscious consumerism, firmly believing that it can lead to a brighter future for society.”
Words by: Pattareeya Puapongsakorn
Photo courtesy of JAIKLA