The market for dog foods has changed and become more gourmet in many ways. Over the six past years the market for gourmet foods has expanded and has now become an $11 billion industry. This industry is also changing in that it is catering to customer preferences which are moving towards healthier and more natural foods for pets. Brands are changing their product lines to conform to these new customer preferences.
What this generally means is that brands are removing those additives and filler that are commonly included in dog foods such as grains and preservatives that will often increase the calories, but not necessarily the health of the food. The new gourmet dog foods smell and taste better and more natural, and also have more meat and nutrition for your dog.
To engineer this many dog food manufacturers are changing the food products that they are offering to their customers and many of the major brands are acquiring smaller organic dog food competitors. One example of this is Beneful, which is owned by Nestle, acquiring Merrick Pet Care which had recently launched a line of organic dog food known as Backcountry. Merrick Pet Care has long been a pioneer in the dog food industry and was the first certified organic dog food producer. Now Beneful has acquired this expertise.
Other small startups are also getting into the game. Freshpet has launched a dog food line that is devoid of preservatives and therefore needs to be kept in a refrigerator and has a shorter life than many of the competing foods. This means that they require proprietary machines to sell them in retail stores like Wal-Mart and have much higher turnover than they might otherwise.
One of the most unique offerings is also sold by Beneful and requires no special equipment other than amazon‘s website and laptop. Beneful allow customers to simply log on and design their own dog food or treat (https://www.beneful.com/products/dog-treats/) which lets them cater to the individual needs of their dog rather than to be using the standard dog food that was fed to all dogs regardless of their age, size, and breed.
Gourmet dog foods do cost more than their alternatives but provide many potential health benefits that are leading to customers increasingly expanding their budget and demanding more from the foods than ever before.
Venezuela’s politic has been quite heated up for some time now. Last year, the opposition won parliamentary elections and this brought hope to the economy and political situation of the country. However, the victory didn’t last long.
Following the election, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and his unpopular government set to strip the National Assembly of its powers. According to the news published in The Washington Post (https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/venezuela-is-in-desperate-need-of-a-political-intervention/2016/04/12/d7071d98-00c9-11e6-9203-7b8670959b88_story.html), the Supreme Court has rejected every notion that the opposition majority have passed. This court is fully packed with allies of Maduro.
Monday 11th this week saw the rejection of the amnesty bill passed by the National Assembly. This bill if passed would have resulted in the release of 76 opposition activists including Leopoldo Lopez the opposition leader. This release according to analyst Danilo Diaz Granados would have helped in stabilizing the tense political environment of Venezuela through reconciliation.
The country’s citizens are already suffering from lack of food and medicine. Moreover, the government has blocked the parliament’s efforts which include measures that would help revive the economy of the country. Recently there has been severe shortage of water and electricity and the only way the government sought to rectify the situation was by decreeing lesser workweek of 4 days. On top of the sufferings of the citizens, the country’s inflation is soaring higher and it is very close to a foreign debt default.
George Soros is a New York hedge fund manager who is one of the politically powerful individuals in U.S. Since 1980s; Soros has influenced the political landscapes of various countries around the world. In some cases, he was a key figure toppling regimes that held the reins of political power on Forbes in decades. In the U.S., Soros has influenced the politics especially the Democratic Party than any other person. The influence of George Soros comes from over $24 billion of personal fortune. The Soros Fund Management has over $28 billion of assets under management. Refer to http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/individualProfile.asp?indid=977
In 1979, Soros began his philanthropic work using the Open Society Foundations on http://www.biography.com/people/george-soros-20926527 to build tolerant and vibrant democracies where governments are accountable to the people. In 1993, he started the Open Society Institute devoted into injecting capital to the American causes and groups. According to George Soros on latino.foxnews, Open Society means to stand for freedom, the rule of law, democracy, social justice, human rights, and social responsibility. Refer to http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/individualProfile.asp?indid=977. Apart from Philanthropy, George Soros has significantly influenced American politics from 2004. Recently, he contributed $1 million towards President Obama re-election in 2012 and $8 million for the current Democratic presidential candidate, Hilary Clinton in 2015. Refer to http://www.politico.com/story/2016/01/hillary-clinton-george-soros-218494
Since two former Soros’s employees are funding the Republican candidate John Kasich, there has been a television ad linking Kasich’s campaign on marketwatch.com and the investor George Soros. The ad claims that Soros is bankrolling Kasich’s super PAC and included the phrase, “Hundreds of thousands of dollars from George Soros”. The truth is that Soros can fund any political group, but everything has to be public according to the campaign finance rules. There is no need to hide even if he was manipulating Kasich’s campaign to discourage the ambitions of other politicians like Ted Cruz and Donald Trump. All you need to find out about the list of donors is to get the campaign finance records.
Scott Bessent is one of the employees linking Soros to Kasich’s campaign. He was the former Soros Fund Management Chief Investment Officer, who is now managing his company that received seed capital from George Soros. The campaign finance records show his donations amounting to $2,700 to Kasich directly and $200,000 to New Day for America. He has also contributed to Republican National Committee with ($39,800), Jeb Bush with $5,000 and $25,000 to Ready for Hillary PAC.
Stanley Druckmiller was the former manager of Soros assets from 1988 to 2000. He donated $450,000 to New Day for America in 2015. He neither has shared any of the Soros political philosophies nor donor histories. Druckmiller has consistently given money to Republican National Committee and super PACs of various Republican candidates. On the contrary, Soros has always given funding to groups supporting Democrat Candidates, and there is no way former employees funding Republicans means working under Soros. Therefore, the claims are false and only meant to deceive the voters. Refer to http://www.politifact.com/ohio/statements/2016/apr/04/trusted-leadership-pac/no-george-soros-not-bankrolling-john-kasichs-campa/
The world sure is a different place, for better or worse, than it used to be. It seems, though, there are more people willing to stand-up and speak-out for human injustices. 21-year-old Yeonmi Park is one of those people. Park was born into privilege, but her life changed when her father was arrested and sent to a labor camp.
Park grew-up in a world where having your own thoughts and feelings were just not permitted. Park could not think for herself, and she was not free. Park was made to believe that her dictator could read her mind. She even recalls learning propaganda-like material in school.
Yeonmi Park inspiring story has been published in her Amazon released book, titled: In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl’s Journey to Freedom. Her book outlines the unspeakable life that she endured as a child living in North Korea. Her father’s attempt to provide for their family only branded them as criminals, and pushed them further into poverty; sometimes she went without food.
But her story does not stop there. It recalls not only her hardships, but her triumphs. Park and her mother were smuggled over the border into China, but their hope was short-lived there. Eventually Park and her mother finally found freedom in Seoul, South Korea.
Park is now a human rights activist, she has videos on Youtube and while she is proud of where she is from, Park hopes that her book will bring attention to the oppression happening in her home country. Her life is a testimony to the resiliency of the human spirit.