Coronavirus is hurting most businesses, but dog food company expands operations, jobs in Del.

By KYW Newsradio 1060
PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — The majority of businesses are struggling as the coronavirus pandemic rages on, but a speciality dog food company is expanding operations.

Just Food For Dogs, a Southern California-based company, started about a decade ago and has gained notoriety for its human-grade, restaurant-quality ingredients. It offers fresh, dog-friendly meals like chicken and rice, beef and russet potato, and venison and squash.

The dog food has been available online and at some retail stores across the country, but it’s now easier for East Coast customers to shop.

Just Food For Dogs opened its first East Coast headquarters on March 23 in New Castle, Delaware. Customers along the Atlantic can get deliveries quicker, rather than shipping from California.

Sales are already skyrocketing, and the company plans to expand and hire additional kitchen staff.

“When we originally put forward the plans for the state, internally our plan was to hire 50 team members over the first three years,” said CEO Carey Tischler. “It actually turns out we'll end up hiring 50 team members in the first two or three months, as we are expanding the operation on the East Coast just to kind of meet the ongoing increase in demand during this crisis.”

Tischler said many of the new team members were hired after being laid off from restaurants in the Delaware Valley region.

He added e-commerce sales are up more than 400% company-wide compared to this time last year. He credits that to pet owners stocking up during the pandemic and exploring healthier options.