With estimated billions spent annually to house, feed and care for their pets, Americans are always on the lookout for the newest thing their pets will need to increase their quality of life. One of the things pet owners spend the most on, and want the best of, is food. Richard Thompson, CEO of Freshpet Inc., based out of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, recently opened the doors of their factory to show off the making process of their refrigerated dog food, the only industrial brand on the market that does so. With a combination of organic meats and vegetables in their mix, manufacturing chief, Michael Hieger, during a tour of the facilities, proudly ate a slice of the dog food as a show of confidence in its quality. That may seem like a gimmick devised to attract attention to the company’s claim of purity, but Freshpet claims it’s only the truth. Upwards of $23 billion is spent annually on Amazon solely on the production and innovation of pet food. This includes brands from companies like Colgate-Palmolive, which few would expect would be producing pet food, and make claims such as weight loss, optimum nutrition standards, and even “farm to table” ingredients that boast organic quality. Thompson sees this innovation in the market as the future of pet food, with owners and producers wanting to provide products in this vein of thinking, providing food that’s a little closer to what owners would eat. Beneful likely sums this up most succinctly by offering dog food styled after traditional dishes like lasagna and beef stroganoff. Odd as it may seem at first glance, the idea that owners would want their pets to eat like they do, is a winning strategy for the companies that sell these foodstuffs. Particularly for producers of dog food like Beneful. Since 2009, Beneful dog food sales alone have jumped 45% to reach $10.5 billion. Companies like Blue Buffalo, one of the first to market the organic style of pet food, is expected to reach a billion dollars in sales this year. Analysts on Wall Street seem to think the success of this is in line with health trends across the country, which more and more people seem to be leaning towards. Thompson sees that as a recipe for success in 2016.