For this year’s pond season Tetra revealed its successful Tetra Pond Sticks with an improved recipe. Kristine Tast, Marketing Manager Outdoor and with Dr Hubert Kürzinger, Head of Global Research & Development Center Aquatics Nutrition and Companion Animal talk about the advantages of the product.
Ms Tast, what was the aim behind this product improvement?
Kristine Tast: When it comes to product development we are always focussing on satisfying consumer needs. Our aim is to provide solutions that are relevant to the consumer. Thanks to our global market research, we know precisely what customer needs and problems are. For instance we know that, apart from fish wellbeing, water quality and clear water are the most important aspects for pond keepers. That’s why it was important for us to tackle this very issue and to further improve Tetra Pond Sticks in relation to this. We support this pledge with our brand. In our experience, consumers are moving away from a “cheap” mentality and towards quality. Quality sensitivity is playing a growing role among consumers and they are increasingly backing known brands and German-made products.
Dr Kürzinger, you were largely responsible for developing the new Tetra Pond Sticks. To what extent has the product been improved?
Dr Hubert Kürzinger: The added phosphate content has been lowered by 25% in order to significantly reduce water contamination. As such, our research and development department has succeeded in creating an optimal combination of high nutrition and low water pollution.
Why does phosphate have to be in food at all, since it’s a well-known algae nutrient?
Dr Kürzinger: Phosphate and phosphorous have to be viewed in different ways. For, on the one hand, phosphorous forms a major part of bone make-up and is involved in the important processes of metabolism. The phosphorous needs of fish have to be met so as to avoid problems of deficiency such as disrupted bone development or slow growth. On the other hand, phosphorous and phosphate are fish waste products and so also contribute to eutrophication and hence to overfertilisation in ponds. The more excessive or the more unusable the amounts of phosphorous that are contained in food in the form of phosphate, the quicker the pond becomes polluted, encouraging algae growth. By reducing the added phosphate content in new Tetra Pond Sticks by 25%, this unpleasant effect is successfully avoided.
Ms Tast, why are Tetra Pond Sticks of better quality than the products of other suppliers?
Kristine Tast: Tetra Pond Sticks are an ideal complete diet for all pond fish and contain all essential nutrients, fibres and minerals as well as trace elements and vitamins for all-round biologically balanced nourishment – just as you would expect in nature. This way, pond keepers can be sure that by using Tetra Pond Sticks they are maintaining and improving the health and vitality of their fish. For the optimised mixture of nutrients ensures increased resilience, as bolstered by the patented BioActive formula. The sticks’ unique recipe and the top-quality ingredients prevent diet-related deficiencies. The sticks soften quickly for easy feeding and the high biological availability of nutrients makes them highly digestible. Thus we achieve excellent food conversion which in turn has a very positive effect on water quality. After all, the right care starts with the right feed.
Dr Kürzinger, at the company’s headquarters in Melle you work with around 20 colleagues on new product development and product improvement along with Biological Quality Assurance – what is the primary goal of your work?
Dr Kürzinger: Several requirements are always taken into consideration when developing Tetra products: the health of fish, high quality and high food acceptance as well as excellent water quality. All these aspects influence one another and so we are continuously working on balancing all the components with each other in the best possible way in order to put first-rate products on the market, since this is what the Tetra brand has long been known for.
Tetra Pond Sticks:
Tetra Pond Sticks are ideal as a daily feed for all pond fish and are available in a variety of sizes. Sticks are supplied in 1 litre containers, 7 and 10 litre buckets and plastic bags holding 4, 7, 15 and 50 litres as well as in a new 40 litre size. The high-quality, resealable bags mean that the food is shielded from harmful factors such as sunlight, air and humidity. This protects the important substances inside and keeps the food fresh so fish get best possible nourishment.