Pet food company now an industry leader

With help from the research team at Niagara College, Iron Will Raw is now the first and only pet food facility in Ontario to be Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) certified and only one of three in all of Canada. Internationally recognized, HACCP is a systematic and preventative approach to food safety, which helps to find, correct, and prevent hazards throughout the production process.

With this internationally recognized certification, Iron Will Raw is on its way to becoming a national brand coast to coast, says its owner Matt Bonanno. He readily gives some of the credit for his company’s rapid growth to the Canadian Food & Wine Institute (CFWI) Innovation Centre for its help in the demanding process of ensuring food safety is their No. 1 priority in their products, along with high-quality natural ingredients.

Company owner and president Matt Bonanno with four canine friends in front of Iron Will Raw’s temperature- controlled delivery vehicle.

Iron Will Raw came on board with the CFWI Innovation Centre for two separate applied research projects, thanks to Niagara Region and federal funding (from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada), and involved students receiving real-world knowledge guided by expert staff, including an industry HACCP specialist.

The research team helped Iron Will Raw develop rigorous food safety protocols. The result is a pristine facility with 24/7 temperature monitoring, full traceability to slaughter and biological guarantees from suppliers for a number of pathogens. Now that the production facility is following strict adherence to good manufacturing practices, the company is focused on moving the business into more locations across Canada.

For more information on food and beverage innovation projects, click here.