Early in my United States Air Force career, I was introduced to the adage “perception is reality.” In our current environment, food safety is very important, as it should be. Mis-information exists on the internet that might convey the perception that real food pet products are not safe. The louder the misinformation speaks, the more often the public hears of safety woes, the more the mis-perception becomes reality.
The other side of that coin states that the quieter our voices remain, the less credibility we have when we state that real pet food is safe. The time to communicate safety is before there are perceived issues. The time to communicate with your customers is now – before they ask – because they are already thinking it.
What follows is a brief discussion regarding safety:
According to the Merriam-Webster on-line dictionary, “safety” can be used as a verb or a noun. When used as a verb, safety is defined as “to protect against failure, breakage or accident.” When used as a noun, safety means “the condition of being safe from undergoing or causing hurt, injury, or loss.” There are other uses of the word to include “a device (as on a weapon or a machine) designed to prevent inadvertent or hazardous operation.” Additionally, there exist definitions pertaining to a situation in football, including a member of the defensive football field, and also a billiards shot. Even these last three definitions are relevant to this discussion.
Some safety-related questions include:
Have you considered every aspect of the definition of safety?
How do you protect against failure?
How do you provide the conditions that prevent hurt, injury or loss?
What is your infield (in-facility) safety plan?
Regardless of your manufacturing method, your business has safety (adjective usage) measures in place. These safety measures should be communicated to your consumers on a regular basis-at least monthly, if not weekly. This builds transparency with your customer.
Whatever your answers to the above, and related questions, they are essential to communicate. Because perception is reality, the better you have met your consumer’s reality (based on transparency and honesty) the better their perception.