Nestlé Purina PetCare EMENA [NPPE] unveiled its first Purina in Society Report ( http://www.purina.eu/pinsreport ) last night. The report shares highlights of the progress made in 2016 against Purina’s 10 commitments to society and showcases success stories from across Europe that demonstrate the value of the pet-human bond in a world that is becoming more complex. It was launched at an exclusive evening event held in London last night that brought together experts, including leading futurist speaker, Gerd Leonhard, who discussed the role that our humanity and relationships, including those with pets, play in a technologically-driven society.

The event focussed on four (of the 10) Purina in Society pet-focused commitments:

  • Promote pet adoption through collaborations and partnerships
  • Promote responsible pet ownership programmes for children
  • Promote pets in the workplace
  • Help reduce the risk of pet obesity through collaborative prevention programmes

Purina believes that the benefits of the pet-human bond will become increasingly important in the future. The emotional bond between pets and people helps to keep us connected in a world that is at risk of becoming disconnected by digital advancements and transformations.
Keynote speaker at the launch event, Gerd Leonhard, CEO at The Futures Agency, said: “Technology can improve our future if we maximise what cant be automated our humanity through human connectivity. Our relationships with each other and the ability to form powerful emotional connections will be crucial to remind us what makes us different to machines. Pets can also help us to be more human too, this emotional bond reminds us to practice empathy and compassion.

  • Some key progress updates from the report include Commitment and progress on promoting pet adoption through collaborations and partnerships: Purina has set a goal by 2023 to work in 10 European countries[1] to support pet adoption programmes and organisations to help improve pet adoption rates. The progress to date is that by 2016, pet adoption partnerships have been established in six countries. Purina has partnerships with WAMIZ in France; with ENPA in Italy; with VIVA in Poland; with Help Guau Las Nieves Amigos Del Perro in Spain; with the “Giving Hope” Fund and RunForDogs Fund in Russia and with Cats Protection in the UK. Purina also has a long-standing partnership with the DSPCA in Ireland.
    • Lewis Coghlin, Director of Fundraising at Cats Protection, UK spoke at the launch event  about promotingpet adoption through collaborations and partnerships. As a representative of Cats Protection UK – the largest feline welfare charity in the UK – Lewis provided insight into pet adoption and how cats and pets overall can positively impact broader society. Specifically, he highlighted the Cats Protection charity’s partnership with Purina, as well as the National Cat Awards (NCA), both of which have been instrumental in celebrating the real-life stories of heroism, companionship and loyalty in the cat world in order to raise awareness about the cause
  • Commitment and progress on promoting responsible pet ownership programmes for children: Purina set the goal to educate two million children on responsible pet ownership by 2023 (baseline year 2015). To reach this goal, several programmes specifically designed for children have been developed. By 2016, seven countries had already established these programmes: France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Russia and Spain. In 2016, approximately 198,912 children participated in the programmes
    • Chantal Hazard, Graduate in Dog Behaviour and Zootherapy, France spoke about promoting responsible pet ownership programmes for children. As an expert in dog behaviour and zootherapy, Chantal shared her experience and insights, providing practical information on the importance of teaching and supporting children to become responsible pet owners. She also explained how it offers children more opportunities to experience the joy and responsibilities of being with pets – and how this is even more important with the growth of ‘easy’ technology which doesn’t given people unconditional love
  • Commitment and progress on promoting pets in the workplace: By 2016, ten countries across Europe had established Pets at Work programmes in Purina offices – Belgium; France; Germany; Greece; Italy; the Netherlands;Poland; Spain; Switzerland; and the UK. Purina aims to create 200 alliances across Europe by the year 2020
  • Germano Calvi, Head of Research and Data Science, Publicis Communication Italy spoke about promoting pets in the workplace. As a representative of Publicis Communication, the first Pets at Work Alliance (http://www.petsatworkalliance.com) member, Germano discussed his first-hand experience and provided context and information from a real-world perspective on the benefits of welcoming dogs into the workplace. He shared the 10 month long journey of implementing Pets at Work in their office with the support of Purina. Germano covered how they overcame some initial concerns through to the positive reception and change that took place when their first dog walked into Publicis Communication office on 25 June 2017
  • Commitment and progress on helping reduce the risk of pet obesity through collaborative prevention programmes: Purina has set a goal to support obesity-prevention partnerships and programmes in its top 10 European markets by 2023 (baseline year 2014). In 2016, Purina developed the Healthy Love programme that launched in the UK in 2017. The programme is offered to all veterinarians and supports them to address the sensitive issue of managing weight in a positive and non-judgmental way. The Healthy Love programme focuses on 3 main steps:
    1. Preventing pet obesity and maintaining a healthy weight in all pets, with a focus on high-risk normal-weight individuals
    2. Correcting obesity with a simplified weight loss programme for overweight pets
    3. Avoiding rebound weight gain and maintaining a healthy weight for the long-term

Bernard Meunier, CEO at Nstlé Purina PetCare Europe, Middle East & Africa, announced the Better with Pets Purina in Society report, 2016; and discussed the collaborative work with stakeholders that has gone into establishing and following through on the 10 commitments.

I am proud that we are already making steady progress towards meeting our commitments in a short time; however, we recognise that there is still work to be done, said Bernard Meunier, CEO at Nestlé Purina PetCare Europe, Middle East and North Africa. With this in mind, we continue to listen to, and work closely with, our broad range of stakeholders to ensure that we are able to deliver on the goals set against each commitment for the benefit of our future pet loving generations. Indeed, we are pleased to announce our new Purina Better Together Prize, a search for initiatives across Europe working to advance the health and wellbeing of society by unleashing the power of the pet-human bond. Purina, in collaboration with Ashoka, will offer CHF 100,000 to initiatives harnessing this mutual positive power.

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