FAQs on our new KatKin kitchen
Read time: 8 min
Q: Have you changed the ingredients?
The ingredients in our recipes haven't changed. We continue to use 100% human-quality meats we can eat ourselves, just the same as we have always done.
Q: Have you changed the composition of the recipes?
The composition of the ingredients in Cluck, Gobble, Quack, Mooo, Baaa, and Splash are still the exact same as before. We have changed the composition of the Oink recipe to improve the nutritional value and reduce the appearance of fattiness.
Q: Have you changed the way you cook the recipes?
We moved from gently cooking the recipes in plastic pouches to instead gently cooking in small batches and then filling the trays. We still use steam and the same temperatures as before to gently cook the ingredients and lock in vital nutrients and flavours.
Q: Why did you change the way you cook the food?
The new cooking method lets us give customers fresh food in sustainable, easy-to-use trays. Over the past three years, reviewing and improving the sustainability of our packaging has actually been the most common request from our customers.
The new cooking method has also let us improve the fat incorporation of the Mooo, Baaa and Oink recipes. It will also give us more options in the future to further improve recipes (e.g. adding ingredients at different stages of cooking).
Q: Why is the texture different?
There is more stirring of the meat whilst it is cooking in our new cooking method. This currently results in a finer texture, but we have improved this a lot over the past weeks. There are further improvements we are making both in the very short term and also longer term, so we will keep you updated.
Q: Why does the food look flat in the trays?
When the food is filled into the trays, it can become compressed and look flat. If you use a spoon or fork to fluff up the food before serving it to your cat, the natural texture will return.
Q: Why is there gristle in some of the recipes?
We are using the same human-quality thigh meat (and suppliers) as before, because it is a great source of nutrients and protein. The bits of gristle included are naturally part of these cuts, so this is not a concern. Most cats don't notice these pieces and enjoy them as part of their meals. But some cats might avoid these pieces from time-to-time. This is similar to cats who hunt outside. Once they catch their prey, they will only eat the parts they choose. While these parts have always been in our recipes, we will work to improve the appearance given recent feedback from our customers.
Q: Where do you make the food?
We are cooking the food in our new kitchen. We have moved our kitchen to Haverhill, Suffolk. Previously, our kitchen was in Park Royal, London.
Q: Should I worry that my cat will not eat the new tray recipes?
In recent weeks, 79% of customers have told us that their cat is eating the food. It’s possible that some cats will need more help to transition. This is similar to what many customers would have experienced when they first started KatKin or any other cat foods.
Q: Can you bring back the pouch-style recipes?
We are bringing back three of the pouch-style recipes from 9 May to help some cats and customers who are struggling to transition to the new tray recipes. We are asking customers to help us choose which three to bring back, by filling in this survey before Monday, 24 April.
STORING + SERVING THE FOOD
Q: How do I need to store the new trays?
It is very important to put the trays in your freezer when you get your delivery. Only keep the trays in your fridge for a maximum of five days before you open and serve them.
Each tray is made up of two quick snap halves. The two halves are your cat’s daily calorie serving. So once a half is opened, it is important to serve the food the same day.
Q: Why can’t I warm up or defrost the recipes in the microwave or using hot water?
The finer texture of the meats means that they lose their textural structure and release their natural moisture if customers reheat the recipes in their microwave or using hot water. We have not changed the ingredient composition of the recipes (except for Oink).
This is happening because we use natural ingredients and there is more stirring of the meat in our new cooking method. And unlike wet and dry food, we don’t use high temperatures to sterilise the food, and we don’t include high levels of carbs as fillers. In wet and dry food, these can work together as processing aids to continue to bind the moisture in the food.
We are working hard right now on a solution and are making fast progress. We want to solve this challenge without compromising the nutritional quality of KatKin. We will keep you updated and let you know when you can heat up the food again.
Q: How should I now serve the new tray recipes to my cat?
We recommend you feed the new tray recipes to your cat straight from the fridge or at room temperature. Many customers are telling us their cat is happily eating the food this way.
Q: What do I do if my cat is not eating the food?
Our top-tips still apply with the new tray recipes, same as with our older pouch-style recipes. Please be patient with your cat and persevere; top up with Sprinkles if you have any; and give your cat some space to get familiar with the new food. You can also mix in with any other food while helping your cat to get used to the newer texture.
If you need more help, please contact our customer team for extra support.
THE NEW TRAYS
Q: Why did you change to the trays?
Over the past three years, reviewing and improving the sustainability of our packaging has been the most common request from our customers. Many customers have also wanted packaging that was easier to use and store.
Q: What are the trays made from?
The base tray is made of 80% recycled plastic. Whereas none of our previous packaging was easily recyclable, 85% of the new tray can be recycled with most local schemes.
Q: Can I recycle the trays?
Yes. All you need to do is remove the peel top, rinse the tray and put it in your home recycling bin. You can return the peel top with soft plastic schemes at Co-op and Tesco or 23% of local councils – check with yours to find out how.
Q: Why can't I put the tray in the microwave or in hot water?
The recyclable plastic currently used in the new trays does not have the properties needed to withstand high temperatures. We are looking at ways to fix this in the coming months.
Q: Why was my delivery delayed?
There were significant and unexpected delays in setting up the new kitchen, and we ran out of some popular recipes and sizes. Therefore, we had to delay deliveries to some of our customers as we did not have the stock available to fulfil these orders.
Q: Why do some of the recipes look a different colour to before?
We don’t use preservatives, so you might notice some darkening of the meat in the tray. This can happen when air meets the surface of the food. This reaction happens sometimes with food people enjoy, too. Think pâté – or other spreads where the surface can sometimes have a slightly different colour than the rest.
However, if you open a tray and see other colours, or the meat otherwise looks unusual, please contact our team with the batch and best-before date so we can investigate this. This can happen if a tray seal has opened or been damaged, the food has not kept well during delivery, or a tray is left for too long in the fridge.
Q: Can I have a refund if I’m not happy with my delivery?
Under our standard terms and conditions, customers are entitled to compensation for goods they do not receive, or for goods that arrive damaged or in a condition that renders them unsafe to feed.
Our customer team will do their best to offer a solution that works for you. We can arrange to replace any affected meals and adjust your next delivery date accordingly. We can also provide future credit on your account, if you need to pause deliveries for a while. In some cases, we can also offer refunds. It’s important for our team to ask some questions so we can understand the concerns fully, find the right solution, and make sure we can accurately measure customer queries and any concerns.
Q: Why do some cats vomit when I start feeding the new tray recipes?
Some cats are noticing the texture change more than others. When first transitioning to the new tray recipes, this can sometimes result in a cat bringing up its food or having an upset stomach. This can also happen in instances where your cat really loves the food and eats it too quickly.
We know this can be upsetting, and we’re very sorry if your cat is experiencing this. If your cat experiences this, we suggest introducing the newer texture a bit slower to give them more time to adjust. It shouldn’t last long as your cat gets used to their food. This is similar to what some cats experience when they first start KatKin.
However, if you are concerned at all, it is always best to speak directly to your vet.
THE KATKIN TEAM
Q: How big is the KatKin Team?
There are currently 130 people on the KatKin Team. Approximately 50 people work in the London office, 70 at the kitchen in Haverhill, and 10 remotely.
Q: Have the founders sold out to a big corporation or investors?
KatKin remains a fully independent team and company, and the KatKin founders continue to run the business as they have before. The founders have not personally received any money from any investors. All money raised has been to support the business to deliver fresh food to customers and their cats.
Q: Why did KatKin raise money from investors?
Starting a business like KatKin from scratch is highly capital-intensive, and it takes many years before the business can grow enough to break-even. To date, we have actually made accumulated losses – not profits. But we need to secure the future of the business so that we can grow and give more cats the fresh food they deserve.
That’s why we only have investors who are passionate about cats and are fully committed to our mission to give cats the fresh meat they deserve as obligate carnivores. Together we are focused on creating better outcomes for cats, our customers, our people and our planet.
Q: Is there anything I can do to help?
We are currently trying to focus fully on helping those customers most impacted by the delivery changes and transition to the new trays. If you are able to self-serve in your account portal, please can you do so as this will let us help those cats and cat parents struggling with the updates.