Formulation What food category does my pet need?
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4+ MIN

What food category does my pet need?

By Armando Enriquez de la Fuente Blanquet

Formulation Pet food definition, according to categories
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4+ MIN

Pet food definition, according to categories

By Candela Bonaura

Vegetable Origin Fiber Innovations - Time to shine

Latest Macro Ingredients contents

Innovative FEED Act introduced in US House of Representatives
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

Innovative FEED Act introduced in US House of Representatives

The Innovative Feed Enhancement and Economic Development (Innovative FEED) Act was introduced into the U.S. House of Representatives on December 7, a step toward establishing a regulatory pathway for a new category of animal feed additives. The bill was introduced in the U.S. Senate in June. The Innovative FEED Act would amend the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act to allow for a new category of animal food substances that act solely within animals' gut microbiomes or in the feed they are digesting to provide a wide range of benefits, giving the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the power it needs to ensure regulations keep pace with scientific innovation in feed, the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) said in a press release. 'The AFIA is excited that the Senate has already introduced the Innovative FEED Act and now, with the House introduction, the bill has the bipartisan and bicameral support we hoped for,' AFIA President and CEO Constance Cullman said. 'Now, we urge Congress to act quickly on the bill. The legislation will be the spark needed to drive nutritional innovation that improves animal health and production while addressing public health challenges. We need this modernized regulatory oversight instead of the current policy of overregulation. Any delay in enacting this legislation continues to put U.S. agriculture at a disadvantage compared to our global counterparts whose regulatory systems have evolved with the times.' The FDA's Center of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) regulates animal foods with drug claims, including environmental benefit or production claims and claims about the effects on the animal's microbiome. Many in the animal feed industry agree CVM's regulations are overly burdensome and that some rules are inconsistent and arbitrary, and that they put U.S. companies at a competitive disadvantage. They also say the regulations put U.S. dairy and beef producers at a disadvantage because they don't have broad access to these methane-reducing feed additives. Dozens of countries have already safely approved and started using these feed ingredients on farms, resulting in improved animal production, well-being, reduced pre-harvest food safety concerns, and a smaller environmental footprint, AFIA said. 'Competent authorities of our global competitors in Europe, Asia and South America already have updated their policies to allow feed products on the market that demonstrate increased efficiency in meat production as well as byproduct and waste reduction,' said David Fairfield, senior vice president of feed at the National Grain and Feed Association, in a statement. 'To compete in the global market, farmers and ranchers in the United States need access to innovative zootechnical animal food substances to improve animal production and well-being, diminish pre-harvest food safety concerns, and boost sustainability opportunities.' The AFIA has urged the FDA to modernize its outdated 1998 Policy and Procedures Manual Guide 1240.3605, which has hindered animal food manufacturers from clearly indicating non-nutritive benefits on labels without navigating the FDA's arduous drug approval process. There is a wide range of feed additives that have been shown to reduce enteric methane emissions by between 2% and 12% per year. These include seaweed, fatty acids, 3-Nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP), oregano, tannins, nitrate, biochar, cinnamon, garlic and saponins. 'These ingredients have novel benefits that make a positive impact on our food production system, such as improving feed efficiency and reducing human foodborne illness," Fairfield said. "This legislation would provide food manufacturers with a pathway to make truthful, non-misleading production, environmental and well-being claims for animal foods that have been substantiated to provide such benefits more efficiently.' The Innovative FEED Act will bring about the necessary changes to ensure these additives are reviewed for safety and effectiveness as food additives, not drugs, and can more quickly come to market for U.S. farmers and ranchers to choose to use, AFIA said.  By AFIA Source . All Pet Food
 

Czech company earns EU registration for cultivated pet food
Formulation
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8+ MIN

Czech company earns EU registration for cultivated pet food

Prague-based Bene Meat has become the EU's first cultivated meat company to be cleared for sale in pet food after receiving approval from the European Feed Materials Register. The milestone is the latest development in the burgeoning cultured pet food sector, which has witnessed new tech, new brands, as well as rebrands. Bene Meat announced in a press release  that it had been 'certified by the European Feed Materials Register to produce and sell cultured meat for pet food'. Originally Reuters and others (including this publication) reported this statement as an official EU regulatory approval. However, Dr Hannah Lester, CEO and Principal Consultant at Atova Regulatory Consulting, told industry publication CellAgri that while 'Bene Meat has listed their cultivated cells of mammalian origin in the EU feed materials register…so it is true that cultivated meat could be classified as a feed material,' it was important to clarify that this is 'not the same as an EU regulatory approval or certification' as reported by Reuters in an article about the news. According to Dr Lester, 'any feed business operator (FBO) can list a new feed material on the Feed Material Register if it is not already listed in the EU Catalogue of Feed Materials. The Feed Material Register does not grant approvals or certification.' She added that 'Feed materials that are safe and compliant with Regulation (EC) 767/2009 can be used in pet food. There is no separate approval process for pet foods, but there are different labeling requirements.' Robert E. Jones, President of Cellular Agriculture Europe, said in a statement: 'While it is exciting to see the potential of cultivated meat explored for multiple purposes in the food system, it is critical that accurate information is communicated about how new products are regulated. This was not an EU approval. The company in question has self-listed its cultivated cells in the EU feed materials register, which is managed by the industry-led EU Feed Chain Task Force, and they do not grant approvals or certificates. It is important to clarify that animal feed materials do not require pre-market approval and have nothing to do with the robust EU novel foods process our members will go through to bring delicious and sustainable cultivated meat and seafood to consumers.' A spokesperson from Bene gave us the following updated statement about the news: ' To confirm, Bene Meat is officially registered as an FBO producing cultured cells of mammalian origin in the Czech Republic and registered this new feed ingredient in the European Feed Materials Register. Bene Meat has also extensively discussed the subject with the European Commission and Czech Authorities, and verified the application of classification 12 for cultured cells of mammalian origins and provided them with necessary documentation, description of the material and cultivation process. In this regard, Bene Meat has satisfied all legal requirements to bring the feed material based on cultured cells of mammalian origin to the market and is legally allowed to do so.' Editor's Note: we have updated our reporting to reflect this clarification with statements from Dr Hannah Lester, Robert E. Jones and a spokesperson from Bene Meat. Bene Meat first to list its cultivated pet feed on official EU register The Czech startup was founded in 2020 to make cultivated meat for human consumption but has pivoted to pet food for now, providing cultured meat as a raw material to global pet food manufacturers. It has been developing its own FBS-free growth factors since 2021, and now plans to boost production to produce several tonnes of cell-cultured meat daily by mid-2024. 'Thanks to the obtained certification, nothing prevents us from taking further steps,' said Tomáš Kubeš, Bene Meat's head of strategic projects. 'We're negotiating with feed manufacturers to get this wonderful product into production.' Its tech can be adapted according to manufacturers' requirements, offering an ingredient that can be fully used in the making of any pet food product. 'We look forward to working with manufacturers, as we're doing it for them and their customers,' added managing director Roman Kříž. 'Manufacturers have a unique chance to gain an unprecedented competitive advantage in the market, thanks to the existence of our product.' Kříž told Reuters that the startup is able to scale up its manufacturing at prices that make its meat commercially viable on par with premium and super-premium pet food products. Bene Meat is emerging in a market with strong acceptance of cell-cultured pet food. A Czech survey by NMS Market Research found that 48% of citizens prefer cultivated meat in pet food for health and safety reasons, while 27% cited ethical and ecological factors as purchasing drivers for cultured meat for their furry friends. The startup now plans to test how the meat tastes to pets, and will scale up production in its Prague lab as well as a new facility it's on the lookout for. Bene Meat expects to introduce the first cultured meat for pet food in the EU in early 2024. Meatly takes on the UK Another company planning to launch cultivated pet food in Europe – starting with its home market in the UK – is Meatly. If you've never heard of it, it's because this is the new name of the startup formerly known as Good Dog Food. The company, which raised £3.5M in seed funding earlier this year, has just rebranded as it prepares to launch in the UK. Its chairman Jim Melon, executive director of Agronomics has previously said that it would be easier to earn regulatory approval for cultured meat for the pet industry, rather than for human consumption. Meatly was only launched last year, and makes cultivated chicken by 'taking a sample of cells from a chicken egg just once'. It has already secured 'key partnerships with manufacturers' – including with petcare retailer Pets at Home – to get its pet food on shelves soon. 'Our pets love meat, but old-fashioned meat – produced through factory farming – requires a huge amount of land, water, and antibiotics and is a key cause of environmental degradation,' said Meatly CEO Owen Ensor. 'We need cultivated meat now more than ever. Pet food is the natural starting point, given consumers' excitement. We're thrilled to be at the heart of the future of meat production in the UK.' A kinder seafood brand for pets More recent developments include the formation of Marina Cat, a cultivated pet food brand born out of a collaboration between Canada's Cult Food Science and Singapore-based cultured seafood producer Umami Bioworks. Marina Cat will combine Umami's cultivated red ocean snapper and Cult's patented nutritional yeast ingredient, Bmmune, to make a 'high-protein, low-calorie' feline treat that 'provides benefits to a cat's cognitive function, based on its high levels of omega 3, 6 and 9 fatty acid chains'. The startup aims to begin production this year, and expects its product to have widespread availability in 2024. 'My vision for the future is that we no longer have to slaughter other animals to feed our cats,' said Joshua Errett, Cult's VP of product. 'This brand brings me one very great step closer to making that a reality.' The AI opportunity More recently, Vienna-based BioCraft Pet Nutrition (formerly Because Animals) unveiled its proprietary AI and machine learning tool to accelerate R&D for optimal cell proliferation and nutrient production. The tool processes publicly available data and synthesises it into 'a picture of the biochemical machinery inside a cell'. It then analyses the data to identify nutritional inputs that can enhance cell growth, nutrient biosynthesis, or other biological processes key to cultivated meat production. 'The main costs and time sinks on the way to commercialization are R&D-related, and our AI has substantially streamlined this process, accelerated our progress, and reduced costs,' said BioCraft founder and CEO Shannon Falconer. 'In this application, AI can surpass the human brain for speed and efficiency, and helps us derive more complex conclusions by making more connections between more facts.' This came a few months after BioCraft had developed a chicken cell line for both cat and dog food, with the cultured chicken ingredient containing all essential nutrients found in conventional pet food, including high protein content, key vitamins, fats and amino acids like taurine. With the help of AI, BioCraft – which has previously unveiled cell-based mice meat – is engaging in fewer, more targeted experiments, to fine-tune its cell proliferation process and improve the health credentials of its meat. Additionally, it can identify less expensive inputs and ingredients, including those less likely to raise regulatory concerns. (So far, no company has received approval from the US Centre for Veterinary Medicine.) Why alternative pet food is crucial Pet food is a $144B market and one that's set to grow annually by 5.3% until 2028. But the industry carries a massive environmental burden. In the US alone, for example, manufacturing cat and dog kibble is equivalent to 25-30% of all animal-consumption-related emissions. And globally, dog and cat food emit around 64 million tons of carbon per year – that's the equivalent of over 13 million cars. In fact, according to one study, if cats and dogs were considered their own nation, they would rank as the world's fifth-largest meat-consuming entity. Moreover, health is an increasing priority for humans, and the continued humanisation of pets has led to a crossover of habits. This is where cultured pet food comes in. A 729-person study last year found that while 32.5% of Brits would be willing to eat cultivated meat themselves, they'd be more willing to feed it to their pets (47.3%). Of those who would try these proteins themselves, 81.4% would be happy to give them to their four-legged friends. A recent study exploring the environmental impact of vegan pets can provide an insight into the climate-friendly nature of cultured pet food too. The research suggested that if all dogs and cats went plant-based globally, it could help feed nearly 520 million people, save more greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to those produced by entire nations, and free up land the size of several countries. Further research found that vegan diets can be just as healthy for cats as meat-based ones, shedding the 'obligate carnivores' universally associated with felines. It followed another study published last year that found that vegan diets are the healthiest and least hazardous choice for dogs. In fact, vegan cat food is a $9.2B market that's expected to nearly double by 2030, while the vegan dog food market is currently valued at £11.5bn ($14.1B), and projected to reach £21bn ($25.8B) by 2033, according to the Guardian. All the signs are there for the continued growth of alternative pet food, a category that also includes brands like Wild Earth (cell-based dog food) and Bond Pet Foods (cultured chicken for dogs and cats). These latest developments – notably the approval in the EU – are major markers of what's to come for this sector. This article was updated on November 10th 2023 to better reflect Bene's regulatory announcement. As per CellAgri's reporting and additional statements from Cellular Agriculture Europe, we have clarified our reporting to better represent the company's news. On November 13th 2023, we updated this article with a statement from Bene Meat. by Anay Mridul  -  AGreen Queen's resident news reporter. Originally from India, he worked as a vegan food writer and editor in London, and is now travelling and reporting from across Asia.  

Agroloop commissions Bühler to provide proven insect-rearing tech for animal feed
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Agroloop commissions Bühler to provide proven insect-rearing tech for animal feed

Swiss company Bühler will deliver its proven crate-based nursery and rearing technology, enabling a quick ramp-up of the plant for commercial production. By the end of 2024, Agroloop plans to launch its first products, contributing to a more sustainable animal feed value chain. Industrial-scale insect plant Following its foundation in 2017 and the operation of a pilot facility, Agroloop got the green light to implement an industrial insect plant in Hungary in 2022.  Now, they have selected all execution partners and are working at full speed to construct the plant and get it operational.  In the new plant, Agroloop will produce more than 25,000 metric tons of black soldier fly larvae that will be turned into sustainable feed ingredients for the pet food, aquaculture and livestock sectors.  The plant is only the first step in Agroloop's strategy to make insect feed ingredients available for the Central and Eastern European (CEE) agribusiness.  'The abundance of food processing by-products presents a unique opportunity for Agroloop's multi-plant rollout strategy in the CEE region, ' says István Nagy, co-founder and CEO of Agroloop. 'We leverage our strategic partnership with the leading regional feed producer UBM Group to improve feed quality and sustainability by creating future-proof feed formulas. This enables Agroloop to focus on rapid expansion and solidifies our position as a key player in the region.'  Tech for short ramp-up time  Agroloop's insect growth technology has a big influence on plant yield, directly impacting the performance of business. Agroloop has chosen Bühler's nursery and rearing technology for their insect growth system, which has several years of track record in the insect industry.  'We've assembled a technology supplier portfolio to build our plant. Bühler is crucial in providing this design's framework and core components. By choosing Bühler's technology, Agroloop can enter the value chain with the highest standards,' says István Nagy.   Sustainable protein in demand   In pursuing sustainable and environmentally friendly practices, the CEE region increasingly turns to alternative sources for feed ingredients.  By incorporating insects into the feed supply chain, the region can address environmental concerns, reduce dependence on imported protein sources, and contribute to a circular economy approach. In addition, innovative feed formulations containing insects can optimize animal health and growth, thus leading to more efficient livestock production systems.  Insects can be reared on agricultural and food processing by-products, transforming these materials into high-quality protein. This approach reduces the environmental impact of this value chain and creates a closed-loop system where resources are reused and recycled.  The EU has previously depended on imported protein sources for animal feed, contributing to deforestation and habitat destruction in other parts of the world. By embracing the commercialization of insect-based livestock feed, the region can increase feed efficiency, reduce reliance on external sources, and contribute to local and regional food security.  Andreas Baumann, head of market segment insect technology at Bühler, adds: 'The incorporation of insect ingredients in animal feed presents a compelling solution to the challenges faced by the livestock industry.' 'Besides providing nutritious and sustainable protein sources, insects empower local economies to become self-sufficient. That is why insect protein is key to a more sustainable and resilient food system.'  Yesterday, Food Ingredients First reported that the UK Edible Insect Association said that European Novel Food regulations impose an 'extremely high barrier to entry for edible insect companies and ignore the sector's potential to build a more sustainable food system.' In other insect-based developments, US-based scientists recently revealed they are targeting dairy waste reduction by mass-producing the black soldier fly that feeds on it and evaluating the insect's potential as a feed for livestock and domestic pets. ' by Bühler

Australian firm introduces flexitarian diets for dogs
Vegetable Origin
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3+ MIN

Australian firm introduces flexitarian diets for dogs

Many pet parents are adopting one of pet food's hottest trends: raw, fresh and high meat diets. However, high meat diets typically have a high environmental impact. While many pet parents are resistant to turning their dogs vegan - although research shows they could - Planet A Pet Food helps people move to a flexitarian diet for their dogs.
 
Planet A launches Australia's freshest, entovegan dog food, combining upcycled veg and insect protein, with a food-grade plant-based meat analog, that's being used in restaurants and food service around the country.  "People have the idea that their dogs should eat meat, and a lot of it," says Planet A founder Amanda Falconer. "And they often say they're uncomfortable forcing their 'environmental' choices onto their dogs. When we created Planet A, we wanted to meet people where they were in their dog nutrition beliefs but also give them options to mix it up…just as they do for themselves. And that's because, even though I'm vegan myself, I know the majority of people are going to be meat reducers, not vegans." Even though dogs don't have a requirement for the ingredient - meat - but the nutrients it provides, giving dogs the pleasure of the taste and texture of meat was also important. Working with small animal nutritionist Dr Anna Sutton, Planet A Pet Food created nutritionally complete meat-free food that dogs love, featuring human food-grade plant protein, that looks and tastes like meat, but isn't.   The Planet A No-Meat Dinners also combine insect protein, food by-product ingredients together with sustainably harvested algae. Consumers just add water to rehydrate the food, so that it's fresh, when they need it. Food by-product ingredients include: Black solider fly larvae protein, produced using traceable pre-consumer food by-products, like bread from Bakers Delight, excess stock from Simplot and unconsumed food from McDonalds. The production of 1 tonne of insect protein powder creates 2.5 tonnes of insect fertiliser and utilises 14 tonnes of food by-products, preventing an estimated 28 tonnes of greenhouse emissions, resulting in a net offset of over 25 tonnes of carbon emissions per tonne of protein powder.  Vegetable powders from Australia's largest tomato processor, Kagome. They've developed LycoFibre®, an antioxidant-rich ingredient produced from tomato skins, and NinjinFibre® carrot fibre. About 25% of carrots used for juice is waste, and so Kagome's drying process converts 7000 tonnes of carrot pulp per year into 700 tonnes of value-added powder. Vegetable powders lightly dried from out of spec (size-wise) veg and the leaves of cabbages, broccoli and cauliflower. These are also used in human food snacks.  Up to a third of greenhouse gas emissions globally come from the food system and pet food accounts for about 25% of that and growing. About a quarter of all food grown never leaves the farm and Australia discards about 7 million tonnes of food every year. 42% of Australians have either reduced meat consumption or stopped eating it altogether. They have about 2.7million dogs between them.  By Planet A  

Mycotoxins in dog and cat food: how to deal with them?
Formulation
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5+ MIN

Mycotoxins in dog and cat food: how to deal with them?

By Ludmila Barbi T. Bomcompagni

Mycotoxins are toxic substances resulting from the metabolism of some fungi and molds. For the development of microorganisms that produce these toxins, several factors are necessary, such as physical-chemical factors, type of substrate, temperature, and humidity of the storage place, in addition to the amount of water present in the grains and their pH (MAZIERO and BERSOT, 2010). Mycotoxins do not induce protective immunity since they are not antigenic, and therefore, their effects vary with the type, dose, and even the age, sex, and health of the animal. The main clinical signs reported in dogs and cats poisoned by mycotoxins present in their food are vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, abdominal pain, polydipsia, polyuria, ascites, anorexia, and development of chronic liver damage. In canine medicine, it is common to record mycotoxicoses that occur silently, which makes differential diagnosis difficult (SILVA, 2019; WITASZAK et al., 2019). The main mycotoxins and their respective target organs, identified in the canine species, are aflatoxins (AFLA) and fumonisins (FUMO) in the liver, deoxynivalenol (DON) in the digestive system, ochratoxin A (OA) in the kidneys, zearalenone (ZEA) in the reproductive system, patulin (PTA) in the liver and kidneys, and citrinin (CIT) in the kidneys and digestive system (SOUZA and SCUSSEL, 2012). Contamination of dog and cat foods with mycotoxins can occur directly or indirectly. The first occurs when some of the ingredients are previously contaminated, and even with the elimination of the fungus during the extrusion process, the mycotoxins remain in the food, since they are resistant to high temperatures. The direct form is related to food contamination by toxigenic fungi and the subsequent appearance of mycotoxin production (FERREIRA et al., 2007).   The mycotoxicosis scenario in pet food factories is quite challenging Given this, we need strategies that guarantee the high quality of the ingredients used in the manufacture of food for dogs and cats or find solutions that prevent mycotoxins from being absorbed by the animals' bodies. Implementing a comprehensive mycotoxin monitoring program in the pet food plant is essential. This program should include several steps, from careful selection of ingredient suppliers to accurate and reliable laboratory testing. To address the problem of mycotoxicoses it is essential to adopt an approach that includes the identification, quantification, and understanding of the mycotoxins present in the ingredients which will be used to manufacture dog and cat foods. This involves the use of precise methodologies that allow us to determine which mycotoxins are present, as well as their concentrations, helping to evaluate ingredient suppliers and the possible harm that may be caused to animals. Currently, the most well-known methodologies available for the quantitative analysis of mycotoxins in ingredients are high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (Elisa), lateral flow strips (LFD) and near-infrared spectroscopy technology (NIR). These methods allow detection at extremely low levels, ensuring compliance with food safety regulations. It is important to highlight that the choice of a methodology is crucial to have a reliable analysis. However, the real value of managing mycotoxins found in ingredients used in the manufacture of dog and cat foods lies in the ability to interpret the results, evaluate their criticality, and implement corrective plans. Technology is playing an increasingly important role in improving mycotoxin monitoring. Real-time detection systems and predictive analytics based on artificial intelligence are being explored to identify potential risk points in production and enable proactive response. Mycotoxin adsorbent additive's introduction in pet foods has proven to be an effective solution to mitigate the risks of mycotoxins, mainly in factories that do not have control analysis at reception and in monitoring, the silos where these ingredients are stored. For an adsorbent to be considered efficient, it must present some characteristics: it must destroy, inactivate, or eliminate the toxin; not produce toxic or carcinogenic residues in final products or in foods obtained from animals that consumed a detoxified diet; and maintain the nutritional value and acceptability of the product (FREITAS et al., 2012). The adsorbent or chelating agent is an inert material without any nutritional principle, which could adhere to the surface of the mycotoxins present, causing their elimination through the feces of dogs and cats, preventing the toxins from being absorbed by the body. (MOREIRA et al., 2018). Aluminosilicates (clays) are the basis for the development of adsorbent additives. In the 1980s, the ability of certain clays (bentonites, zeolites, and others) to bind to food mycotoxins in the digestive tract of animals, preventing their absorption, was discovered. Currently, we have the most varied types of adsorbents available on the market, products based on volcanic rocks associated with other more technological and broad-spectrum compounds that combine the use of inorganic, organic, and yeast adsorbents. In addition to additives that support the immune system, they restore liver functions and help maintain intestinal integrity. When choosing a mycotoxin adsorbent, it is important to check the mycotoxin adsorption efficiency, which considers the percentage of adsorption and desorption in the intestine. This evaluation includes the stability of the adsorbent-mycotoxin bond and its effectiveness in different pH ranges since the product is expected to act throughout the gastrointestinal tract (Binder, 2007). pH values ​​vary throughout the digestive tract, from acidic conditions to basic conditions. Therefore, the binding capacity of products can be influenced by changes in pH, creating the risk that mycotoxins are adsorbed in one part and released (desorbed) in another part of the digestive tract (Zavarize, 2021). Furthermore, it is necessary to evaluate whether the adsorbent has a broad spectrum, that is, if it is effective for as many mycotoxins as possible. Another extremely important point to consider is the need for the adsorbents to have low inclusion so that they take up minimal space in the food formula and contribute an insignificant amount of mineral matter to the final product. This is especially crucial in premium, super-premium, and especially cat foods, where the amount of mineral matter tends to be lower, compared to dog foods, due to the adjustments necessary to avoid the formation of uroliths. Furthermore, it is essential that the adsorbents do not affect the palatability of the product.   Source: All Pet Food Magazine

NARA recognizes Pet Food Alliance coordinator
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

NARA recognizes Pet Food Alliance coordinator

Martin is an associate professor in Meat Safety and Quality and a meat extension specialist at the Colorado State University's (CSU) Department of Animal Sciences. At CSU, Martin leads a research program focused on the safety and quality of meat and other meat-related products that aims to support industry partners. Additionally, she collaborates with meat and livestock industry members, and serves as the co-leader of Upskilling, a workforce and educational program at CSU's College of Agricultural Sciences that provides career pathways for those in the agri-food industry. In addition to her work at CSU, Martin also coordinates the PFA, a joint project facilitated through the university and FPRF. The alliance seeks to unite members of the rendering, pet food, laboratory and research, academia and technological industries in order to explore opportunities and create solutions to industry-wide challenges. According to NARA, Martin's ongoing commitment to the PFA, as well as her continued support of the FPRF and its initiatives, makes her a worthy recipient of the prestigious award. 'I am truly honored to receive the Fred Bisplinghoff Research Innovation Award from FPRF,' Martin said. 'I am grateful for the opportunity to serve the rendering industry through the Pet Food Alliance and thankful for the numerous industry partners who are willing to collaboratively develop solutions for industry-wide challenges.' Charles Starkey, Ph.D., vice president of scientific and regulatory affairs of NARA and director of research at FPRF, presented Martin with the award during NARA's 2023 Convention in Naples. By NARA

Biorigin Celebrates 20 Years of Commitment to Quality, Excellence, Innovation and Sustainability
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Biorigin Celebrates 20 Years of Commitment to Quality, Excellence, Innovation and Sustainability

Biorigin has stood out over the years for its dedication to product excellence. The company has continually invested in research and development to provide innovative and customized solutions to meet the customers' specific needs and increase their production capacity. Biorigin's commitment to quality and excellence is reflected in its rigorous quality control and global certifications that ensure the consistency and safety of its ingredients. Innovation has been a fundamental pillar of Biorigin's journey over the last two decades. The company has constantly explored new solutions to create ingredients that improve food taste, quality, and the health of people and animals. Through continuous research and development, Biorigin has launched products that have notably benefitted the food industry. Furthermore, Biorigin's determination to promote the well-being of people and animals is demonstrated by its responsible business practices. Biorigin's primary raw material is sugarcane, produced by Zilor, which applies responsible agricultural practices and respect for the environment, ensuring full traceability of its products and reflecting its commitment to an ethical and sustainable supply chain.
Sustainability is an essential element of Biorigin's DNA. The company is committed to reducing its environmental impact and developing ingredients that contribute to the health and well-being of our planet, as shown by its constant pursuit of cleaner production practices, promotion of environmentally friendly packaging, and waste reduction. Biorigin's member of the Board, Maurício Da Barrosa, shared his excitement about this 20-year milestone: 'We are extremely proud of Biorigin's achievements over the past 20 years. Our journey has been defined by dedication to quality, excellence, innovation, commitment to the health and well-being of people and animals, and the tireless promotion of sustainability. We look forward to continuing our mission of creating a better world using biotechnology solutions.' As Biorigin celebrates two decades of innovation, quality, and commitment to sustainability, the company reaffirms its mission to be a trusted partner in the food industry. With a clear vision for the future, Biorigin remains committed to leading the way toward a healthier, more sustainable, and thriving world. For more information on Biorigin and its achievements, visit www.biorigin.net . About Biorigin: Biorigin is a biotechnology company that produces high-quality natural ingredients derived from the fermentation of the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae for the human and animal food industries. Since its foundation in 2003, the company is committed to quality, excellence, innovation, and sustainability. Biorigin's mission is to promote the health and well-being of people and animals while fostering sustainable and responsible business practices. Headquartered in Lençóis Paulista, SP, Brazil, Biorigin operates globally and is acknowledged for its leadership in developing innovative biotechnological solutions. For more information, visit www.biorigin.net. Source: Biorigin By: All Pet Food 

Sustainability of Rendering
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

Sustainability of Rendering

Instead of wasting half of the meat we farm and buy, Rendering reclaims these unwanted 'leftovers' and transforms them into ingredients for countless products, recycling 99% of this unwanted meat. By recycling animal leftovers, renderers create valuable ingredients from resources that would otherwise be thrown away, taking up enormous amounts of precious landfill space. Instead of wasting these animal parts through other disposal methods, renderers recycle the materials into 19 billion pounds of fat, oil and protein products. Rendering not only creates alternative, sustainable fuels to power trucks, trains, water vessels and other vehicles but also nutritiously feeds cattle, hogs, turkeys, chickens, household pets and other animals.  Renderers play an important role reducing food waste, sustainably recycling valuable agricultural resources and positively contributing to local, state and national and international  economies.
Rendering Leads to a Reduced Carbon Footprint
Rendering also protects the environment from the high greenhouse gas emissions of other disposal methods, reduces energy and water consumption, minimizes environmental impacts of animal agriculture and supports communities. The environmental sustainability of rendering avoids at least 90% of potential greenhouse gas emissions compared with industrial composting and sequesters 5 times the amount of greenhouse gas emissions as it emits. If all renderable product were sent to the landfill, all available space would be used in 4 years.
Economic Sustainability of Rendering
The rendering industry is financially stable, secure and sustainable with $10 billion in annual economic contribution.
Workers are highly-skilled and well compensated and employee retention rates are high, leading to more stability and greater contributions to local communities. Simple Fact: Rendering jobs cannot be exported due to the raw and perishable nature of the material our industry reclaims. Source: North American Renderers Association

Purina creates carbon-reduced pet food range
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Purina creates carbon-reduced pet food range

The brand has reduced its environmental impact by making changes to its manufacturing, recipes, logistics and packaging, such as by using renewable electricity in the factories where the range is made and selecting ingredients with a lower carbon impact. Logistically, where the infrastructure exists, pet food products have been transported between countries using multimodal transport – a combination of road and rail systems – instead of purely road. Purina ONE DualNature features mono-material packaging, which can be recycled in stores in the UK, while the bags have been made with 40% recycled plastic. So far, the range has successfully reduced its carbon footprint by 15.7% compared to a 2019 baseline. The range contains natural ingredients with health benefits such as spirulina and cranberry and comes in a variety of meat and fish flavours. Adjustments to recipes have been made without compromising the nutritional value, quality and taste of Purina ONE DualNature, the company maintains. Purina Europe marketing director Fabio Degli Esposti said: 'At Purina, we're committed to producing healthy, nutritious pet food that you can trust. But that's not all. We believe the health of our environment is as important as providing high quality pet food products. 'Purina ONE DualNature is the first Purina product range that has announced a reduction of its carbon footprint, but it's just the beginning. Purina Europe is striving to contribute towards Nestlé's wider ambition of reducing its CO2 emissions by 50% by 2030. 'Our journey goes on and we'll be working to further reduce our greenhouse gas emissions over the coming time, so that pet owners can confidently choose products that contribute positively to both their pets and the environment.' The range is being launched in selected countries across Europe. The RRP in UK grocery stores is quoted as £6.60. By All Pet Food
 

Tyson Foods Announces Partnership with Protix for More Sustainable Protein Production
Animal Origin
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4+ MIN

Tyson Foods Announces Partnership with Protix for More Sustainable Protein Production

 Oct. 17, 2023 – Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN), one of the world's largest food companies, has reached an agreement for a two-fold investment with Protix, the leading global insect ingredients company. The strategic investment will support the growth of the emerging insect ingredient industry and expand the use of insect ingredient solutions to create more efficient sustainable proteins and lipids for use in the global food system. The agreement combines Tyson Foods' global scale, experience and network with Protix's technology and market leadership to meet current market demand and scale production of insect ingredients. Through a direct equity investment, Tyson Foods will acquire a minority stake in Protix to help fund its global expansion. In addition, Tyson Foods and Protix have entered a joint venture for the operation and construction of an insect ingredient facility in the continental United States. Upon completion, it will be the first at-scale facility of its kind to upcycle food manufacturing byproducts into high-quality insect proteins and lipids which will primarily be used in the pet food, aquaculture, and livestock industries. 'Our partnership with Protix represents the latest strategic investment by Tyson Foods in groundbreaking solutions that drive added value to Tyson Foods' business,' said John R. Tyson, chief financial officer of Tyson Foods. 'The insect lifecycle provides the opportunity for full circularity within our value chain, strengthening our commitment to building a more sustainable food system for the future.' Kees Aarts, CEO of Protix, says: 'We are very excited to announce the next step in our international growth strategy. Tyson Foods' and Protix's strategic partnership advances our joint work towards creating high-quality, more sustainable protein using innovative technology and solutions. Moreover, we can immediately use their existing byproducts as feedstock for our insects. This agreement is a major milestone for Protix and significantly accelerates our ambition to grow through international partnerships.'    The to-be-built facility in the U.S. will house an enclosed system to support all aspects of insect protein production including the breeding, incubating, and hatching of insect larvae. In addition to ingredients for the aquaculture and pet food industries, processed larvae may also be used as ingredients within livestock and plant feed. Protix is a fully integrated insect ingredients company, producing and processing 14,000 metric tons LLE annually in its Netherlands facility which has been in operation since 2019. It serves major global companies in the pet food, aquaculture feed, livestock feed and organic fertilizer industries as the demand for insect ingredients continues to grow. Tyson Foods continues to develop solutions to create a food system that is more sustainable and equitable for future generations. To learn more about Tyson Foods' sustainability initiatives, visit tysonfoods.com/sustainability. Insect Ingredient Facility The planned insect ingredient facility will house an enclosed system to support all aspects of insect protein production, including the breeding, incubating and hatching of insect larvae. In addition to ingredients for the aquaculture and pet food industries, processed larvae will find use as ingredients within the livestock and plant feed segments. 'The insect life cycle provides the opportunity for full circularity within our value chain, strengthening our commitment to building a more sustainable food system for the future.'
  About Tyson Foods, Inc. Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN) is one of the world's largest food companies and a recognized leader in protein. Founded in 1935 by John W. Tyson and grown under four generations of family leadership, the Company has a broad portfolio of products and brands like Tyson®, Jimmy Dean®, Hillshire Farm®, Ball Park®, Wright®, Aidells®, ibp® and State Fair®. Tyson Foods innovates continually to make protein more sustainable and affordable to meet customers' needs worldwide and raise the world's expectations for how much good food can do. Headquartered in Springdale, Arkansas, the Company had approximately 142,000 team members on October 1, 2022. Through its Core Values, Tyson Foods strives to operate with integrity, create value for its shareholders, customers, communities and team members and serve as a steward of the animals, land and environment entrusted to it. Visit www.tysonfoods.com. About Protix Protix is the leading company in insect-based ingredients for healthy and sustainable pet food, aqua culture and livestock feed and organic fertilizer. The company is on a mission to create low-footprint ingredients that solve major issues in the current food system. Protix contributes to a circular food chain by using waste from the food industry as feed for the black soldier fly (BSF). In turn, the insects are processed into valuable nutrients such as proteins and lipids. Protix's customers use these proteins and lipids as high-quality ingredients for feed and food. Moreover, residual streams from the insects are used as organic fertilizer. This way, insects close the loop and bring the food system back in balance with nature. Based in the Netherlands, Protix operates the first-in-the-world industrial insect facility, opened in 2019. With breeding, rearing and processing under one roof, the company has complete control of the production chain and offers reliable, high-quality supply. As the frontrunner and industry leader, Protix has laid the basis for a broad range of applications in feed and food. The company is now expanding internationally to deliver its solutions on a much broader scale. Protix believes in the power of partnerships, and actively seeks collaboration with forward-thinking players to unleash the potential of insect ingredients for the world. www.protix.eu. Source: Protix by All Pet Food   

Stalk About Nutritious: It’s Corn!
Pulses and Oilseeds
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4+ MIN

Stalk About Nutritious: It’s Corn!

Corn has an unearned reputation as being something that should be avoided for pets. Some pet foods specifically advertise that they have 'no corn' as if this is a badge of honor and many non-veterinary sources suggest that corn isn't digestible and 'goes straight through' a dog or cat or is a 'cheap filler'. Let's unpack some of these myths and set the record straight.   Can dogs and cats digest corn? While whole sweet corn kernels can make it intact through the intestines of both dogs and cats (and humans!) and be visible in the feces, especially if not thoroughly chewed, this doesn't mean that corn isn't a safe and nutritious food. Like all grains, the digestibility of corn is greatly increased by grinding and cooking – corn meal or ground corn are common pet food ingredients that have been shown to be highly digestible (the starch component is 90-99% digestible in studies).   One type of corn that should never be fed to dogs is corn that is still on the cob. Dogs fed corn on the cob, or who access cobs from the compost or trash, often swallow large portions of the cob which frequently cause gastrointestinal obstruction and require surgery to resolve.   Does corn cause allergies in dogs or cats? While grains and especially corn are often thought to be common allergens by pet owners, the scientific data does not support this perception. Overall, food allergies are uncommon in pets and the vast majority of pets with food allergies are allergic to animal proteins, not to plant proteins or grains. Corn is rarely confirmed to be the cause of allergies in dogs or cats; in most situations where a pet's family thinks that corn is the culprit, it turns out to be a different ingredient, typically an animal protein (or, more commonly, unrelated to food allergy).   Does corn cause inflammation? Corn is an excellent source of the essential fatty acid, linoleic acid. Linoleic acid is an omega-6 fatty acid and it is required to be provided by the diet in dogs, cats, and humans. However, it should be balanced with other types of fats like omega-3s – if a diet has high amounts of omega-6s with little or no omega-3s, that can encourage the production of more inflammatory compounds. Experienced pet food formulators know what combinations of ingredients to use to result in a diet with adequate amounts of essential fatty acids and a healthy omega-6 to omega-3 ratio. The higher omega-6s from corn may be offset by fish or fish oil, algal oil,  flaxseed or flaxseed oil, or even chia seeds. So, while corn as the only source of fatty acids in a pet food isn't ideal, most foods will have a number of other ingredients providing other types of fat to balance it all out.   Do dogs and cats get any nutrients from corn? Corn can be a good source of energy from both starch (carbohydrate) and from fat (as mentioned above). Whole ground corn also contains some corn bran, which is an insoluble fiber source which can contribute to good fecal quality. Corn is also a good source of several B vitamins, magnesium, and potassium. It's also an excellent source of carotenoids – compounds that are made by plants and suspected to have substantial health benefits – like lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene (a vitamin A precursor). We don't know how much of these compounds pets (or people) should get from their diet optimally, but they are thought to contribute to why increased consumption of fruits and vegetables is associated with improved health in most studies in people as well as some in dogs.   Does corn contain gluten? While the protein component of corn is called 'gluten', it is quite different from the protein found in wheat, rye, and related grains that is associated with gluten-intolerance. Gluten intolerance is pretty rare in pets and has been confirmed only in a few families of specific dog breeds. But, even if a pet came from a breed with known gluten-related issues (such as a border terrier or Irish setter), there should be no reason why the pet won't tolerate corn or corn gluten.   Is GMO corn harmful for pets? The majority of corn that is used for human and animal feeding in the US is genetically-modified (GMO) to be resistant to common herbicides. While discussions of the 'evils' of GMO foods are easy to find, actual data to support any health risks to pets or people who eat GMO corn are scarce. Genetically-modified organisms require extensive safety testing prior to FDA approval. GMO corn strains have been available for more than two decades, yet no adverse health effects have been proven. Based on current data, there are no reasons to avoid GMO corn in pet diets. The bottom line is that corn is a safe and healthy ingredient in pet food. Avoid giving your dog access to corn on the cob or empty cobs, but otherwise, don't be concerned to see corn meal, corn gluten, or ground whole corn in your pet food ingredient list. It's also okay to give your dog unflavored popcorn, cooked fresh corn that you've cut off the cob, or cooked frozen corn kernels as a treat – just don't freak out if you see some of the kernels in the feces when you're cleaning the yard!   Source: Clinical Nutrition Service

Pet food experts harness the power of yucca
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

Pet food experts harness the power of yucca

Let's explore the importance of the concept in pet foods, specifically highlighting the benefits of incorporating Yucca schidigera, a natural ingredient, and shedding light on farming practices that sustainably harvest this powerful plant.   Sustainability in pet foods Pet food production carries its own unique ecological footprint, from sourcing ingredients to packaging and transportation. Embracing sustainable practices in pet food manufacturing not only reduces environmental impact but ensures the long-term health and vitality of our pets. By opting for sustainably sourced ingredients and employing eco-friendly production methods, we can contribute to a greener future for our furry companions.   What is Yucca schidigera? Yucca schidigera, also known as Mojave yucca, is a plant native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico that has gained recognition for its numerous health benefits in pet food. The plant contains natural saponins, which possess anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Incorporating Yucca schidigera into pet food has been found to alleviate joint pain, promote healthy digestion, reduce fecal odor, and support overall well-being. It's important, though, to recognize that not all yucca products are the same. How yucca is farmed and harvested can vary. Sustainability starts at the source, and regenerative agricultural practices are needed to ensure that yucca production is both environmentally and socially responsible. Working with trusted suppliers assures pet food producers that their ingredients are from safe, reliable and sustainable sources. Companies such as Alltech understand the importance of regenerative agriculture. Alltech's state-of-the-art production facility in Serdán, Mexico — where Deo-Pet®, a yucca-based pet food ingredient, is produced — is leading the way.   A responsible harvest Alltech's yucca harvest management system enables us to ensure the long-term continuity of the species. The planting area, harvesting methods and cutting plans are determined following the regulations established by the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) of Mexico. Alltech Serdán, located about 120 miles southeast of Mexico City, supports and advises potential suppliers, mostly local families, as they learn to harvest the yucca responsibly. These suppliers only cut plants that are at least 15 years old, and they cut carefully to ensure rapid regrowth. Alltech also trains them to collect, store and remove the yucca in a way that avoids environmental damage to surrounding flora and fauna.   Reforestation and beyond According to the reforestation rules of SEMARNAT, for every yucca tree harvested, one yucca seedling must be planted. Alltech goes above this requirement: for every yucca tree harvested, three trees are planted by local farmers. Alltech supplies the seedlings and provides training and annual programs to review these reforestation efforts. In 2022, the Serdán facility planted 80,046 seedlings in its nursery and reforested 61,113 seedlings.     Alltech Serdán also uses Yucca waste to produce compost and improve yucca seedlings growing in the nursery, reducing the total waste taken to the landfill by a full 88% from 2019 to 2022. The facility as a whole uses compressed natural gas, which reduces its CO2 emissions by 17% annually. It's also home to Alltech's first global renewable energy project, a photovoltaic solar energy system that further reduces the plant's carbon footprint.   Commitment to the community At Alltech Serdán, our commitment to a better world goes well beyond responsible yucca production. We also plant seeds of hope and connection. Alltech Serdán has been certified by Empresa Socialmente Responsable (ESR) as a socially responsible company. This prestigious endorsement is given to businesses in Mexico that are committed to policies, programs, decision-making and actions that benefit the business and have a positive impact on people, the environment and the communities in which they operate. The ESR certification requires companies to meet expectations in five pillars: quality of life for employees, business ethics, community involvement, environmental awareness and corporate management. The Serdán production facility, which started with 15 employees, now has 200, making it the only significant employer in the town. It also generates employment for the 50–70 local families who supply yucca plants. Alltech Serdán participates in numerous social projects that benefit local children, including its support of a primary school, a special-needs school, the Casa Hogar orphanage, and several other local organizations.   Nourishing pets and protecting the planet Sustainability means taking positive action today for the success of tomorrow, and supporting companies and suppliers that prioritize responsible farming practices encourages the future adoption of sustainable approaches throughout the pet food industry. As we move forward, there's always room for innovation and improvement. New ideas in pet food production, like Alltech's incorporation of sustainably sourced Yucca schidigera, are a vital step toward a greener and healthier future for our pets, our communities and our planet.   By: Janella Hurst Source: Alltech  

Did you know about all the control stages commercial food should go through to guarantee the quality that reaches the pet's plate?
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Did you know about all the control stages commercial food should go through to guarantee the quality that reaches the pet's plate?

By Candela Bonaura

There is a large offer, and veterinarians should have tools to be able to discern between the different nutritional proposals, not only about the pet's needs according to species, age, size, and particular situation or physiological state but in the knowledge of the manufacturing company and interpretation of the quality offered. On the one hand, we must consider the table of centesimal composition as well as the specific protein contribution, fat and metabolizable energy. However, it should always be linked directly to the list of ingredients to determine not only quantity but quality. This list should have its ingredients in descending order, so those foods that contain animal protein in the highest order are superior to those that do not. On the other hand, there are more ways to add value to food and improve diets with nutraceutical ingredients and upgrade the proposal according to specific needs, such as oral, joint, and urinary care, among others. Likewise, manufacturing companies must or should go through multiple controls, from raw materials selection to final product preparation. The goal should not only guarantee the contribution of the necessary nutrients but also their safety. Some of these controls are physical, chemical, sensory, and microbiological, and they are carried out at different stages of the process. In addition, there are standards and entities that regulate the production process and may differ by country. For instance, EU regulations detail which safe ingredients and additives can be used in pet food manufacturing. The ingredients can be of animal or vegetable origin. Many of the animal-derived ingredients used in pet foods come from parts of them not consumed by humans for cultural or habitual reasons. Today the importance of caring for finite resources in many parts of the world is a fact, and sustainability has also taken an important place in this area. Plant-based ingredients are often common in both human and pet nutrition (corn, rice, wheat, oats, etc.). Others are specific to pet food. Pet food manufacturers include intake instructions on the food label, including storage and handling requirements. Guardians should evaluate the container for information on the expiration date and batch of the product. A responsible pet food manufacturer will take safety and quality very seriously and have their own defined processes and standards that help ensure the safety and quality of their ingredients and products. These should start with trusted suppliers and go all the way to feeding the cat or dog and are likely to include: Reliable suppliers selection Defined specifications for raw materials, periodic inspections, and tests They may require a certificate of analysis from the supplier. Nutritional profile, color, texture, digestibility and palatability, and technical parameters such as moisture content. Routine product testing. Visual inspection of the grinding process Measurement of quantities of raw materials Controlled temperatures and cooking times Regular sampling and testing of final products Registration of ingredients through batch records, final product pallets, and their destinations to ensure traceability Microbial testing routine Regular verification of packaging integrity Metal detection or contamination with foreign objects Verification of nutritional adequacy through analysis of raw materials or final products or feeding studies using nutritional guidelines A responsible manufacturer may choose to implement voluntary third-party audits and certifications through a third-party accreditation institute.   Stages that lead the raw material to be the food consumed by pets   Source: All Pet Food Magazine

Cellulose and lignocellulose, providing fiber to dog food
Vegetable Origin
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3+ MIN

Cellulose and lignocellulose, providing fiber to dog food

By María Candelaria Carbajo

Fiber is an alternative to combat obesity and help these pets reduce their daily food intake and, consequently, have an impact on their weight. But it is not the only cause in which fibers are used, such as, for example, cellulose fiber or lignocellulose.   Fiber in dog food? Fiber is a complex carbohydrate resistant to dogs' digestive enzymes. Several sources of fiber are commonly used in pet foods, including beet pulp, bran, tomato pulp, buckwheat, and powdered cellulose. In simple words, fiber moderates how quickly food moves through the digestive system, which helps regulate intestinal activity. Dogs do not have a physiological need for fiber. A natural canine diet contains little to any fiber. However, it can be beneficial for today's dogs, including improving gut health, strengthening the immune system, weight management, diabetes, and anal gland disorders.   Cellulose, a usable but controversial fiber Cellulose is a fiber found in the cell wall of plants. It is found in the bark of trees and plant leaves. It is an insoluble fiber, which means it either cannot be dissolved in water or absorb it. Today there are different positions on cellulose fiber since certain professionals affirm that, although it is a fiber that increases food volume, it does not have any nutrients, so it must simply be added to the formula and not a main ingredient. Those who defend powdered cellulose in dog food cite ease of use, necessary fiber content, and cost-effectiveness as some of its main advantages.   An alternative: lignocellulose Lignocellulose is an alternative that, according to some recent studies, could be a vegetable fiber with great potential for our industry. It is the main component of the cell wall of plants and is a source of XOS (Xylo-oligosaccharides) compounds, which stimulate the growth of beneficial bacteria for the intestinal flora and serves as a type of dietary fiber.   Studies and research Scientists from the University of Veterinary Medicine in Hanover, Germany, and Mansoura University in Egypt conducted a study in which 8 Beagle dogs were given 1 of 4 foods for 14 days. These foods were the same except for the fiber they contained: powdered cellulose, granulated cellulose, lignocellulose, and a control food without additions. It could be shown that all 3 fiber types led to lower caloric intake by the dogs, compared to the control diet. At the same time, no cellulose decreased or affected palatability. And while fecal quality was not affected by fiber sources, the feces of dogs consuming fiber foods were wetter, compared to those on the control food. Thanks to this study, the professionals were able to affirm that lignocellulose can be used as an alternative to cellulose as a fiber source in wet dog food. Since lignocellulose reduces gross energy digestibility as cellulose, it can also be used in feed for overweight dogs.   Conclusion Choosing the best ingredients for each pet food formula is not easy, considering all the factors that need to be considered: consumer desires, nutritional value, costs, production, availability, and regulations. In the case of cellulose and lignocellulose fiber, as mentioned above, the latest studies have shown that the incorporation of a specific source of this type can improve the health and well-being of companion animals. Research carried out for industry experts as well as for pet owners is critical to moving toward an increasingly science-based, safer, and consumer-focused food industry.   Source: All Pet Food Magazine

Pet Treats Continue on an Upward Trajectory
Formulation
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4+ MIN

Pet Treats Continue on an Upward Trajectory

With his mid-1800s introduction of the first dog biscuit, Mr. James Spratt probably suspected he was onto something big. But there's no way he could have known he was lighting the fuse on a $60 billion market for pet food and treats. During 2022, pet treats (including rawhide chews) represented about one-fifth of those dollars, closing in on $12 billion, and treats remain a leading pet market category. Like many types of pet products, treats were at the right place at the right time during the pandemic, which helped to boost sales by 20 percent in 2020 and 18 percent in 2021, and the annual percentage gains remain in the low double digits thanks in part to inflation-related price hikes.  As of May 2023, nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of dog and cat owners used treats to bond and spend quality time with their pets, and nearly half (49 percent) were treating their dog/cat more frequently as a result of spending more time at home. The enduring success of pet treats is, of course, more than a function of luck. As much as any pet product, treats dovetail pet health and pampering, and from that first biscuit, the market has been segmented every which way. The products are, in other words, anything but one size fits all, closely aligning with key trends in human foods and pet food overall. Grain free, natural/organic, functional ingredient, novel protein and human grade are among the most sought-after types, with more indulgent items also in demand along with dental chews and treats that meet both functional and pet pampering/entertainment needs.  Topping the chart as of May 2023 was U.S. sourced, with 49 percent of the dog owners and 40 percent of the cat owners who had purchased treats in the previous 12 months opting for made in USA, with no artificial ingredients/preservatives, organic, grain free, natural, and limited ingredient also high on the list. The COVID-19 effect has not been all good news for pet treats, which have been facing the same post-pandemic headwinds as most consumer categories in the form of record- high inflation. A potentially longer-term and not altogether positive impact is the acceleration in online shopping, which was already going strong. Frequently strategically placed on endcaps or near the checkout, treats are often a spur-of-the-moment purchase more likely to happen instore.  Over three-quarters (76 percent) of dog/cat owners buy pet food and treats on the same shopping trip instead of separately, and more than two-fifths (42 percent) view pet treats as an impulse purchase. In an omnichannel world where sales continue to shift onto the internet, it's on e-tailers and marketers to cross-promote treats to online shoppers in the market for pet food. As of 2022, e-commerce represented approximately 34 percent of dog and cat treat sales, but by 2027 that share is expected to rise to nearly 40 percent Helping to pick up some of the slack is the slew of online-based subscription box programs that have popped up in the past several years. BarkBox, one of the earliest and now the largest, delivers on a monthly basis a range of products to pet owners including at least one treat sample.  Subscription boxes present an ideal opportunity for marketers to introduce products to pet owners on a "try it, like it, buy it again" basis, as well as to help offset the negative impact of missed in-store purchases. With the success of BarkBox and similar programs, treat-specific subscription programs have popped up, allowing pets and pet owners to try out a different selection of treats on a steady basis. Harkening to the potential, even pet specialty retailers have gotten on board, with Petco teaming up with PupBox and Chewy offering Goody Box. At the same time, the business continues to shift in the direction of functional treats, which are increasingly doing double duty as, and competing with, pet supplements. In addition to catering to health-focused pet owners, functional treats appeal to value-conscious pet owners swayed by the idea of getting "two in one" value in treats that address specific conditions.  Functional treats serve as an integral part of many pet owners' pet health and wellness routines; as of May 2023, a large majority (70 percent) were willing to spend more for treats that addressed specific health concerns. Another flourishing segment is cat treats, as more marketers expand their offerings to embrace this "second-class pet," which is currently outpacing dogs in population growth. Looking ahead, pet owners' commitment to pet health and pampering will remain key market drivers, and treats will continue to benefit from being a frequent pet market entry point and crossover opportunity from other categories such as pet food, pet supplements, pet toys, etc. Taken together, these trends portend a healthy outlook, with U.S. retail sales projected to near $18 billion in 2027, reflecting a compound annual growth rate north of 9 percent and billions more dollars' worth of Mr. Spratt's stroke of genius. by David Lummis. Senior pet market analyst for the Packaged Facts brand within The Freedonia Group, a division of MarketResearch.com.

How is a feed formula designed?
Formulation
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4+ MIN

How is a feed formula designed?

By Armando Enriquez de la Fuente Blanquet

The main problem when formulating foods is to satisfy the nutrient requirements. Then, we talk about formulating a balanced food. There are several methods used to balance rations, from the simplest to the most complex and technical ones. Among them, we can find trial and error, simultaneous equations, Pearson's square, and linear programming. For balancing rations, ingredients are combined to meet the protein, fat, fiber, amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals that pets require for health and well-being. Within the formula of the balanced pet food (the recipe), two ingredients require special attention in their precision. I am talking about the vitamin premix and the mineral premix, which are generally separate formulas, as they are made up of more than one nutrient inside. The amounts of vitamins and trace minerals required are few, and they are in the order of micrograms or a few milligrams per day. That is why it has been decided to add them through a premix. Vitamins and trace minerals are essential substances for life. If we supply less than their daily requirement, we will certainly see how the subject develops severe deficiency symptoms that lead to manifestations of deficiency or syndromes. Regularly, the pet food formula contains 1 or 2 of these ingredients: a premix of vitamins and minerals when it is one, or a premix of vitamins and premix of minerals when it is two. Now we analyze the design of the premix formulation that will be included in the complete pet food.   The steps in a premix formulation are   Defining the premix The first step will be to know which species it aims for: dog, cat, or something else. Then it has to be decided which pet's life stage is: age, size, weight, activity level, race, physical problems, and the like. Our "claim," or value proposition, which can go into the premix. What kind of pet food are we going to manufacture? This can be dry, humid, or semi-humid, in very general terms. Gathering the data of the process parameters, as well as temperatures, humidity, pressures, and times, among others. Knowing the rest of the ingredients of the complete formula of the balanced food: corn, meals of animal origin, oilseed pastes, additives, etc. Having a well-defined shelf life which we must guarantee, be it one or two years.   Ingredient selection Speaking of vitamins, their forms must be selected according to the production process the food will undergo: microspheres, spray-dried, coated crystals, adsorption, etc. Regarding trace minerals, we must consider that the inorganic source will affect the vitamins more than the organic or hydroxy sources. Also, we should keep in mind that trace minerals vary in molecular structure as well as in performance in animals. It must also be considered that the premix can be the means to add other ingredients that require precision, such as omegas, some vegetables, mycotoxin binders, and natural or synthetic antioxidants, among others. The vehicle is an important player in the design because it will give it density and properties for correct mixing. They can be vegetables, minerals, or both.   Estimating the super-addition, mainly in vitamins Any portion of food must meet the nutritional requirements indicated by international guides such as AFFCO, FEDIAF, or NRC. Therefore, the final product must contain this recommended minimum level at the end of its shelf life. I always suggest starting with a safety margin, that is, above the minimum level suggested by nutritional guidelines. This way, even if the dog or cat eats a little less, or has a higher consumption than the average, that daily dose would ensure that symptoms of vitamin deficiency will not occur. The food manufacturing process involves temperature, humidity, pressure, oxygen, and more. If one or more of these elements affect the vitamins, an over-addition is necessary to compensate for the loss due to processing, so we can reach the desired level. Once the food leaves the production line, it will travel to the market, where it will be available for the pet parent to purchase. In addition, it can also remain on the shelf for some time, and we must also consider a loss due to storage.   Premix test The design of the premix on paper is one and, in reality, things may be different. That is why it is important to produce a sample and carry out a mixture, content, and physical analysis. If the premix complies with what was designed, food manufacturing should be run and, once again, carry out a content analysis – now of the pet food–. We should not forget the shelf life analysis.   Final part When the premix complies with the design, and we know the product physically, we need our plant personnel to be trained on the importance of this ingredient and the care that must be given to it. Once we have finished the premix, let's take it to production!   Pet food formulation must be adequate and precise, particularly with two micronutrients that must have our attention during the formulation: vitamins and trace minerals. The design of the vitamin and mineral premix is ​​as relevant as the design of the food itself, and their development process should be as meticulous as possible.   By: Armando Enríquez de la Fuente Blanquet Source: All Pet Food Magazine

Popular pet food claims in 2023
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

Popular pet food claims in 2023

Digestive health is also becoming a highly sought-after pet food attribute across age groups, with 47% of pet owners ages 18 to 54 claiming interest in these products, as well as 43% of pet owners age 55 and older. Pet owners are also interested in treats that address specific health issues, according to Mintel, with 36% of pet owners ages 18 to 54 claiming interest in this category, compared to 34% of those ages 55 and up. A  wider gap between generational interest is seen for pet food products that are sustainably sourced, with 28% of pet owners ages 18 to 34 interested in this category, compared to 27% of pet owners ages 35 to 54, and 19% of those age 55 and older. Additionally, the rise of functional meal toppers is attracting interest from younger pet owners, with 25% of those ages 18 to 34 curious about these products, compared to 18% of pet owners ages 35 to 54, and 15% of those age 55 and up. According to Mintel and Kantar Profiles, pet owners between the ages of 18 and 54 (19%) are more likely to show interest in pet foods formulated with plant-based proteins than their older counterparts (10% of those age 55 and older). Regardless of perceived interest, pet food and treats with functional claims are taking the industry by storm, with 21% of new cat and dog treat launches in 2022 claiming oral benefits and tartar prevention. Additionally, 7% of new launches touted joint, bone and muscle support, and those claiming digestive benefits and skin and coat benefits both made up 6% of launches in 2022. Global Pet Food Market Trends in the Next Two Years Pet owners are focusing on healthful food – particularly natural options – for their pets. The future of pet food will be influenced by consumers who are keen to offer their pets fresh food, or even homemade options. Mintel anticipates that there will be pet food innovation for animals suffering from increasingly common issues such as obesity who will benefit from personalised diets and technological measures. Companies in the global pet food market must reassure pet owners of the benefits of sustainable pet food beyond planet-friendly credentials. Global Pet Food Market Trends in Five Years and Beyond Pets are taking a more prominent role in consumers' lives. As such, pet owners will focus more on their pet's behaviour. The global pet food market can help improve pets' mental performance through innovative foods that are personalised to match the needs of each pet. Pet owners are increasingly seeking better food options and mealtimes for their pets. Mintel expects pet food innovation with microwaveable packs for in-home use in addition to fine dining options that will hold appeal for discerning pet owners seeking an out-of-home experience. Consumer concerns around water usage are not restricted to human food. Companies will need to share how they are reducing water in their formulations through alternative ingredients or use of freeze-dried options. By Mintel All Pet Food 

Torula yeast for a more palatable, digestible, and nutritious cat food
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Torula yeast for a more palatable, digestible, and nutritious cat food

Yeast in pet food Sustainability in the pet food industry is an ongoing debate that often focuses on the ingredients used in it. Today, protein sources are under scrutiny, especially for their effects on ecosystems and societies, since the resources and conditions needed to develop them can be harmful to various ecosystems. Currently, the best-known type of yeast is nutritional yeast, used to add protein to various foods, although it is also a flavoring agent. There are many different strains of inactivated yeast, and each has a different flavor. One deactivated yeast is Torula yeast, but others used in the market are active, such as beer or bakery yeast.   Torula yeast Torula yeast (Candida utilis) is a type of inactivated yeast and is one of approximately 1,500 types of tiny, single-celled fungi. Torula edible yeast grows on wood alcohols and is used when deactivated and dried for flavoring and nutrition. The truth is that, generally, being low on the food chain reduces the environmental impact of a protein source, and mushrooms live near the bottom of it. Raising mushrooms as new pet food ingredients as one that would otherwise go to waste, reduces the environmental impact of animal nutrition. This yeast feeds on the woody biomass left over from the manufacture of wood products, and because wood waste is plentiful, renewable, and does not compete with human food crops, considerable sources of protein can be extracted. Indeed, it's possible to affirm it has favorable properties for extrusion as well as benefits for the animal's digestive system. Torula yeast is free of allergens and heavy metals.   Torula yeast in pet food For pet food, Torula yeast may have an advantage over other novel proteins. It is an AAFCO-approved ingredient with a history of safe use. In 2019, feeding trials tested it in dog food and found the fungal protein source works on par with chicken meal, and a more recent study found evidence that torula yeast can also serve for producing cat food. A study at the University of Kansas looked at the use of yeast in pet food. Torula yeast, as well as brewer's and whey yeast, have been categorized as nutritional yeasts when fed as inactive microbial biomass, primarily for their nutritional value. Among the most traditionally used in livestock nutrition, Torula yeast is the most favored in terms of its flexibility of carbon sources and growth capacity. It can metabolize xylose and its oligomers, allowing growth on low-value cellulosic waste materials. Thus, it enables large quantities of microbial protein to be produced from a sustainable and cost-effective growth medium. In addition, producing yeast from cellulosic material has a lower carbon footprint compared to soybean, pea protein, and chicken meal, the elements on which the study's comparisons are based. All four cat foods, with these ingredients, were prepared using single screw extruders under similar processing conditions. The study found that Torula yeast is highly digestible by cats and even increased their preference for food containing it while aiding processing and kibble formation. Furthermore, under similar processing conditions, this yeast resulted in a more extended product, particularly in the radial direction, which caused the lowest density and hardness. The study determined that Torula yeast can be safely included in feline diets, with levels limited for fecal quality considerations. In palatability tests, cats chose more food with Torula yeast than those with chicken meal. However, there was no difference from the other ingredients. On the other hand, the crude protein of Torula yeast digestibility was similar to the other three formulations, with an average of 89.97%. Yet, fats digestibility was lower for this (92.52%) than for the other protein sources.   Conclusion Yeast-based ingredients are playing an increasing role in the premiumization of pet food as a source of improved health and wellness for pets in hundreds of pet food markets worldwide. Yeast is no longer only used to improve palatability, but interest is now growing in the value and impact it might have in increasing immunity levels and improving gut health. In this sense, Torula yeast seems a great alternative to incorporate into formulas, although, and while even there is very recent research, experts in the field recommend further investigation to evaluate postbiotic analysis, the mechanisms of the functionality of raw materials, and the implications of protein ingredients on urinary health in cats.   Source: All Pet Food Magazine

Tapping Into China's Pet Food Market: Opportunities For Success
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Tapping Into China's Pet Food Market: Opportunities For Success

As she has so much experience in the pet food industry, we asked her to share some valuable insights into the current state and future prospects of the Chinese pet food market. China's pet food market has seen significant growth over the past few years, driven by the rising number of pet owners who prioritize the health and well-being of their furry companions.  The market continues to evolve, which means there are ample opportunities for pet food companies to tap into this growing demand and establish a strong presence.  A psychological portrait of a Chinese pet owner The majority of pet owners in China are young, with limited experience in pet care. That's why they rely heavily on online platforms for pet-related information and advice from veterinarians. Pet health is a top priority for these owners, as they know that a well-balanced and nutritious diet is vital for their pet's overall well-being. Pet food manufacturers that supply high-quality raw materials, accompanied by clear functional claims and authoritative verification reports, are most likely to stand out in this growing market. One crucial factor to consider is the growing population of senior pets in China. In most cases, this is a new and unfamiliar situation for many pet owners, as this is the first time they are going through such moments. Therefore, brands entering the market should focus on addressing crucial factors like pet emotional health, cognition, and specific issues related to aging. By addressing these needs, brands can establish a strong position and build trust among pet owners. Advice for Western brands entering the Chinese market For Western brands looking to work with Chinese pet food manufacturers, understanding the cultural nuances, the needs of pets, and the preferences of Chinese consumers is essential. A Chinese end-user, especially one who prefers to buy premium food and treats, wants to see a European touch on the product.  It's important to mention this on the package, point of sales, and in their marketing campaign. This will undoubtedly build trust, help increase product recognition, and will make the product more liked among buyers. The future of the Chinese pet food market As said, the Chinese pet food market is experiencing rapid growth, along with various complexities and opportunities. The pet food industry in China offers an abundance of products with diverse claims and formulations, addressing the needs of pet owners of different ages, from various cities. Online transactions play a significant role in this market too, opening up new avenues for exploration and expansion.  Cats are expected to dominate the pet population growth in China, particularly among young women who are conscious of their pets' health and nutrition. Streamlining product claims and using professional design elements will help pet owners save time in choosing pet food. At the same time, this will also allow them to spend more quality time with their pets and enrich their overall pet-owning experience.  Aker BioMarine's collaboration with Chinese pet food brands Aker BioMarine, the biotechnology company behind the QRILL Pet products, has been committed to having a local presence in China since 2011, recognizing it as the world's largest market for marine ingredients. In recent years, Aker BioMarine has been collaborating with leading pet food producers in China, establishing krill as a premium pet food ingredient in the country.     These partnerships focus on customizing raw materials, sharing best practices, and promoting the development of pet health food through scientific research, technology, and consumer insights. In conclusion Understanding the preferences and expectations of Chinese consumers, as well as the evolving pet ownership trends will be critical for success in these coming years. By collaborating with local partners and offering high-quality, innovative pet food products, brands can tap into the growing love and concern for pets in China.Focusing on health, nutrition, and sustainability, the future of the Chinese pet food market is bright for both manufacturers and pet owners. by Suha Zhou - Sales Director QRILL Pet China

Challenges for the canine and feline nutritionist and pet food formulator for the upcoming years
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Challenges for the canine and feline nutritionist and pet food formulator for the upcoming years

By Ludmila Barbi T. Bomcompagni

Proper nutrition: The main challenge when formulating and developing products for the pet food market is ensuring proper pet nutrition. Each species has specific nutritional requirements, and products must be formulated to fulfill them. In addition, we have to consider factors such as age, size, breed, and individual health conditions. Formulating nutritionists must ensure that products are balanced and meet all necessary nutritional requirements. Knowing the ingredients in depth: Finding and using quality ingredients is another challenge facing pet food developers. It is important to ensure that the ingredients used are safe, healthy, and meet regulatory standards. Knowing the nutritional composition of each raw material, the digestibility of the ingredients for each species, and thinking about the interactions between nutrients during the digestive process of animals should also be questioned by the formulating nutritionist. Not only do the points mentioned above matter, but the choice of ingredients must also be very well thought out since it must comply with the minimum cost proposed for the formula, the availability of purchase considering the seasonality of each raw material, and the possible fluctuations in the availability in the market. In addition, some tutors are increasingly concerned with the origin of the ingredients, so their choice must also be guided by the product market positioning of the product that the nutritionist is formulating. Finding reliable suppliers and establishing long-term partnerships is essential to ensure the consistency and quality of the ingredients used in pet foods. Understanding additives, their functions, and purposes: The industry of additives for animal nutrition is constantly evolving thanks to the development of new products and technologies. A pet food formulator must keep up with these updates and advances in the field of additives to optimize pet food formulations and deliver high-quality products. Some additives are used as preservatives to extend the shelf life of pet foods. A pet food formulator must understand how these additives work, as well as the proper dosages to ensure food safety and good shelf life. Palatability: Pet food can be nutritionally balanced, but if it is not appetizing and acceptable to pets, it will be rejected by guardians and the animals themselves. Palatability is a major challenge when formulating new products. Pets have individual preferences, and their tastes may vary. Companies and their development teams must invest in extensive research and testing to ensure that their products are tasty and attractive to animals, while also meeting nutritional needs. Processing considerations: Pet food processing is an additional technical challenge. It is necessary to ensure that food is manufactured consistently, maintaining the integrity of ingredients and preserving essential nutrients. The pet food formulator must know the extrusion processes and their pre- and post-processing, as so many parameters can affect product quality, such as grinding, time/temperature inside the extrusion barrel, shear, friction, density, dried, and covered. Extrusion is one of the types of processing that the formulator must master, but the dynamics of product diversification for this market require that these professionals learn about new forms of processing, such as autoclaving, dehydration, freeze-drying, and other innovations that may arise. Innovation and market trends: The pet food market is constantly evolving, driven by trends and consumer demands. Product developers must be aware of the latest trends and innovations in the industry, which includes the development of specialized products for specific needs, such as food for pets with food allergies, diets for weight loss, and organic and natural foods, among others. Keeping up with these trends and innovations requires continuous market research and flexibility to adapt to changes. The pet food market presents significant challenges for formulators and product developers. Proper nutrition, choice of quality ingredients, palatability, processing considerations, and innovation is critical to success in today's marketplace. With so many challenges, a pet food formulator must be a multi-faceted professional. The association and collaboration between the pet food nutritionist, researchers, and alliances between public and private institutions are important for the training of these professionals. They also promote science and technology for this market and to overcome these challenges, develop healthy and attractive food for pets, ensuring the health, and longevity of pets and owners' satisfaction. By: Ludmila Barbi T. Bomcompagni and Erika Stasieniuk Source: All Pet Food Magazine

 Low Glycaemic Properties of Isomaltulose Confirmed in Dogs
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Low Glycaemic Properties of Isomaltulose Confirmed in Dogs

The study results demonstrate that isomaltulose is a suitable low glycaemic ingredient for use in dog food, triggering a lower blood glucose rise after consumption. This property makes it a particularly interesting solution with the potential to support metabolic health and weight management. Numbers of overweight and obese dogs have steadily increased over the last few decades and exceed 50% in Western countries.  Excessive weight is linked to metabolic and skeletal associated disorders and impacts the quality of life of both dog and owner. This is reflected in pet owners' interest in tackling such issues: More than 8 in 10 pet owners worldwide agree that on-pack communication about helping to control their pet's weight naturally (87%), or having a lower impact on blood sugar levels (85%), very much or somewhat affects their purchase intention of a pet food product.   Here, nutrient choice has an important role to play, especially in regards to which carbohydrate is used in a dog's food. Firstly, because overweight or obese pets are at risk of developing impaired glucose tolerance and insulin resistance. Secondly, low glycaemic diets have been shown to support weight loss and improve metabolic health in both humans and dogs . Therefore, finding suitable low glycaemic ingredients for dog food is key.   In total, three studies were carried out by the teams from universities in Utrecht and Wageningen. The first, an in-vitro study of small intestinal tissue samples from three dogs, evaluated the small intestinal hydrolysis of isomaltulose compared to sucrose, maltose, maltodextrin, lactose and ɑ-trehalose. The aim was to confirm if dogs have the ability to digest isomaltulose, as well as compare it with other carbohydrate sources. The findings showed that it can be digested by canine intestinal enzymes, with a lower enzyme activity compared to high glycaemic carbohydrates, indicating a slower rate of hydrolysis. The second and third studies compared the effects of isomaltulose, sucrose and maltodextrin in an in-vivo set-up. One of the studies assessed the glycaemic effects of the three carbohydrates in nine dogs and using a 3x3 Latin-square design . After an overnight fast, the blood glycaemia and insulinaemia were measured 0-180 minutes after the administration of a single dose of either isomaltulose, sucrose or maltodextrin. The results showed that isomaltulose significantly lowered blood glucose and insulin responses in the dogs, compared to maltodextrin or sucrose. The goal of the final study was to assess the glycaemic properties of isomaltulose in dogs, after continuous intake. This was based on the assumption that the abilities to digest isomaltulose might evolve through adaptation, so that its impact on blood glucose levels would get closer to the other carbohydrates. In this study, 18 dogs received a 50:50 mix of isomaltulose and sucrose (1g per kg bodyweight) daily for two weeks. They were then split into three equal groups which each received a single dose of either isomaltulose, sucrose or maltodextrin after an overnight fast. Following this, the dogs' blood glucose and insulin responses were measured. Even after continuous intake over two weeks, the low glycaemic and insulinaemic properties of isomaltulose were confirmed. Commenting on the findings, Dr Maygane Ronsmans, Product Manager Animal Nutrition at BENEO says: 'This research is of great importance as it offers the first comprehensive characterisation of isomaltulose with respect to its digestibility and metabolic effects in dogs. The low glycaemic properties of isomaltulose already shown in other species, including humans, pigs and rodents, have now been confirmed in dogs. The combined results of this study suggest that isomaltulose would be a suitable energy source in dog food, which contributes to a more stable blood glucose response, and may improve the dog's metabolic profile and overall health.' Isomaltulose is a disaccharide which occurs naturally in honey. It is composed of glucose and fructose, characterised by a stronger glycosidic bond than that of usual sugar. Isomaltulose is a direct source of energy that generates a more balanced blood glucose response, distinguishing it from high glycaemic energy sources, such as heat treated cereals and conventional sugars (e.g., dextrose). BENEO derives isomaltulose from sugar beet at its production plant for functional carbohydrates in Offstein, Germany.  by BENEO-Animal Nutrition For further information on BENEO and its ingredients, please visit: www.beneo.com

NARA -Animal Nutrition
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

NARA -Animal Nutrition

Because North American renderers process at optimum temperatures over a prescribed length of time and they use strict quality control measures, animal protein meals are consistently high quality, uniform, stable, affordable, and nutritionally dense. The materials renderers provide allow for more sustainable pet food sourcing while producing high-quality meals for animals. Rendering practices are vital for sustainable and well-balanced pet food nutrition.   Ingredients in Pet Food Pet food uses a wide range of ingredients that renderers can process from waste products. As a result, when excess materials from meats are removed during processing, they can go toward pet food nutrition. There are several critical nutrients that pets need to stay healthy, such as proteins, minerals, vitamins, and carbohydrates, and animal nutrition research demonstrates that rendering can have a vital role in meeting this need. Key ingredients that come from rendering include: Meat and bone meal. Animal proteins. Animal fats. These substances can serve as crucial nutrients for pets' health and daily dietary needs. The ingredients may include human-grade food and other materials deemed safe for animal consumption. Dogs and cats of different breeds and sizes have various nutritional needs and may eat wet and canned foods, kibble, dry food, treats, and other options. Based on animal nutrition facts, individual pet food manufacturing companies follow different formulas to meet dietary requirements for animals.     Applications Renderers can use a wide range of strategies to address critical requirements for animal protein meals. By repurposing meat, fat, and other processing remnants, the industry can provide resources to feed pets and aquaculture and meet healthy dietary benchmarks while reducing the amount of waste sent to landfills.   Pet Food Pet food and products are a multi-billion dollar industry, and the market is growing. Rendered protein meals such as meat and bone meal, poultry co-product (also called by-product) meal, and fish meal are almost universally used in pet foods. They provide high-quality protein with a good balance of amino acids essential to pet health. There are several key advantages to using rendering practices to source pet food, including: Safety: Renderers meet high-quality food processing standards to prepare materials for animal consumption, helping ensure the final products are safe and beneficial for pets' health. Sustainability: By using materials that would otherwise be considered waste from standard meat preparation, renderers help save production costs and protect the environment. Nutrition: The proteins and fats obtained through the rendering process are highly advantageous for pets' day-to-day health and meet dietary nutrition benchmarks. View exciting results from a first-of-its-kind joint pet food study with the Pet Food Institute and AFIA detailing how the pet food production process feeds the agriculture economy and reduces food waste. This insightful research analyzes the wide-ranging benefits of rendering and pet nutrient production. It also demonstrates how the practice contributes to long-term sustainability efforts in this industry.   Learn More With NARA At the North American Renderers' Association (NARA), we're committed to supporting renderers and meat processors in sustainable waste product recycling. We represent the industry with advocacy and trusted resources that help educate and grow this critical field. For more information on our services and how to become a member of our organization, contact us today.   Source: North American Renderers Association

Pet Treats Sales Fueled by Inflation in 2022, Packaged Facts Reports
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Pet Treats Sales Fueled by Inflation in 2022, Packaged Facts Reports

Growth in the pet treats market has slowed since the large pandemic-era increases in 2020 and 2021, with much of the growth in 2022 fueled by inflation-related price increases rather than by growth in unit sales, according to Packaged Facts.  Online sales makes up the largest portion of pet treat sales at 34 percent. By type of pet, dog treats represent the majority of sales, at 78 percent, although cat treats sales are increasing at a faster pace. By product type, indulgent treats make up the largest share of the market, at 36 percent, followed by rawhides/long-lasting chews, functional treats and dental treats. Prolonged inflationary conditions have cooled the pet treats market somewhat, with Packaged Facts survey data showing that 57 percent of pet owners are concerned about rising prices in the pet treats category. Many pet owners are reducing their spending on discretionary items, making multi-functional treats, such as dental treats and those that offer health and wellness benefits, more attractive, Packaged Facts officials reported. Two of the top trends driving growth in the pet treat market include humanization and an increased focus on using pet treats as part of pets' health and wellness regimen, officials said. Behind both of these trends, however, is the pet owner sentiment that pets are part of the family. For many pet owners, pet treats are an opportunity to solidify the pet-owner bond.  'Not only do pet owners use treats to encourage good behavior (for training purposes, for example), they use them to express feelings of affection; 'treat time' has become a way for pet owners to show their pets just how much they mean to them,' said Shannon Landry Brown, brand manager for Packaged Facts pet market research.  Despite the challenging economic conditions, Packaged Facts projects the pet treat market to continue to grow over the next five years, with key opportunities including value-positioned treats, treats for cats, and treats featuring alternative proteins.   by Packaged Facts  

Kemin Nutrisurance unveils new wet pet food pilot lab
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Kemin Nutrisurance unveils new wet pet food pilot lab

During the ribbon cutting celebration on July 20, Kemin employees, customers and local guests were invited to tour the new pilot lab, which will be able to mimic the production of wet pet food in a smaller-scale plant environment. Chris Nelson, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer, Kimberly Nelson, president of Kemin Nutrisurance, and Jason Shelton, Ph.D., vice president of research and development at Kemin Nutrisurance, addressed attendees and shared the mission of the new business unit and pilot lab facility. 'There is enormous potential still left in wet pet food — to understand a lot about the chemistry and how to improve this overall product,' Chris Nelson explained. 'This facility allows us to test those new ideas for our customers.' The state-of-the-art facility offers Kemin Nutrisurance the opportunity to work with current and existing customers to create, test and validate pet food and treats to help better predict large-scale results. The pilot lab offers a dedicated space to develop wet pet food, as well as test dry kibble coatings. It features more production capacity and testing capabilities than most R&D labs, but its smaller scale plant environment provides more flexibility to produce smaller batches and adjust formulations during the process. The opening of the pilot lab served as a platform to introduce customers to Kemin's advancement in its R&D offerings under the new Research and Explorations Services umbrella. 'This is really a celebration of our formalization and the elevation of our service in R&D,' Kimberly Nelson said during the ribbon cutting. 'Services as a platform has been critical to our success for years, but bringing research and exploration as an element to it formerly is the next step in our commitment to our customers.' 'With Research and Exploration Services, we are able to elevate our own R&D efforts, building on Kemin's legacy of market-leading solutions and helping customers test, create and validate pet food products with unmatched accuracy and efficiency,' Shelton added. 'Now, with our expanded customer-service offerings, Kemin Nutrisurance delivers the industry's most comprehensive approach to R&D.' Kemin Nutrisurance's Research and Explorations Services will expand beyond the United States with pilot labs and innovation centers in Brazil, Italy and China. Source: Kemin Industries  

Achieving Multiple Benefits with Functional Fiber Ingredients - A Holistic Approach to Pet Food Innovation
Vegetable Origin
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5+ MIN

Achieving Multiple Benefits with Functional Fiber Ingredients - A Holistic Approach to Pet Food Innovation

Turning to Functional Fiber for Added Fortification   Texture and uniformity of pet foods are key quality attributes that are important to appeal both pet owners and their furry friends. Given the variable nature of pet food ingredients and the complexity of the manufacturing process, creating the right consistency can be a challenge for the manufacturer. From a functional standpoint a novel type of fiber based on long cellulose particles is gaining enormous traction in various types of 'grain free' recipes with higher meat inclusion. In extruded and baked applications the long and fibrillated fibers help to improve binding of ingredients and to add a particular firm texture in the final product. Thereby only small amounts of the fiber also prove to shorten drying time. Long cellulose fibers tend to keep the surface of the extruded product open and support moisture evaporation. In wet pet foods the long and thin cellulose particle enhances texture in meat chunks and reduces syneresis because of the high water retention and emulsion capabilities of the fiber. During retorting the fiber network helps to maintain the shape of the chunk and prevents unpleasant cook-out effects into the gravy. Additional cost saving effects can be achieved through the replacement of more expensive binder sources when reformulating lower-cost pet foods with cellulose fiber.   On-Trend Pet Food Segments with Fiber-Based Solutions In recent years there has been rapid growth with smaller pet food segments like raw/frozen foods and meal toppers. These product categories allow pet parents to put their own touch on mealtimes. However, unlike more traditional formats like dry and wet foods, the category of pre-prepared complete raw foods is still more a niche segment because handling and preparation time of frozen foods does not provide the same level of convenience as opening a bag or a tin. In frozen foods, for example, the issue of syneresis is still very common. This means if pet owners are defrosting such foods prior to feeding, the molded products start loosing their shape and most of the liquids like water and blood start to leak out which does not look attractive to the pet owner. To overcome such issues, cellulose gels that are designed for human food applications such as ice cream or beverages, are used today also in fresh and frozen foods. Existing frozen food lines were redesigned with these easy dispersible cellulose gels to offer more convenience for pet owners. Cellulose gels are typically made by the process of copolymerization with Microcrystalline cellulose and other gums to create unique properties that are usually not found in conventional fiber gums. The fiber exhibits strong gel thickening behavior while having a good suspension ability, but also functions as emulsifier, fat and water binder. Beyond fresh and frozen pet foods, the segment of toppings, gravies and mix-ins is another emerging product category where manufacturers and pet owners can benefit from the strong stabilizing system of a fiber gel. Special vet-broth formulas, for example, are today supplemented with fiber gels to create a strong viscous emulsion when the powdered blend is mixed with water to support pets that need additional hydration. The unique film forming properties of the fiber gel are also helping to preserve freshness of dry foods once the meal topper is served as a supplement by the pet owner. Because of the fat-like characteristics, cellulose gels are creating a more creamy texture of the final product that can increase appetite appeal for picky eaters.   Fiber Innovation for more Differentiation on Shelf Cat and dog food products are more sophisticated than ever and reflect many of the trends that are seen in food products for humans. Foods that come in different flavors, textures and shapes, claim to help maintain active lifestyles, and address specific health needs by the use of unique, marketable and functional ingredients. The downside of many nutritional and sometimes very costly ingredients is that they may potentially improve the quality of life for pets, but they are not visible to grab the attention of impulse buyers that are willing to spoil their pets with special treats and foods. So developing innovative marketing concepts with appealing ingredients is still a major challenge for the pet food industry. Microbeads made from natural and biodegradable cellulose fiber ingredients are a new concept creating an exciting innovation platform for the pet food industry from which to launch more complete solutions in dental foods. Although initially developed as cleansing and polishing ingredients in all type of personal care products for humans, the fiber pearls are today used in pet food formulations that target the oral care claim. The cellulose microbeads are compressed by an intense mechanical process to create round shaped pearls with a size of up to 1mm. These co-processed fiber pearls resist impact by heat and moisture and survive even harsh manufacturing processes such extrusion, tableting or retorting. This guarantees good visibility in the final product. Due to this unique characteristic the pet food industry is using these ingredients as abrasive agents for enhanced dental foods and to make oral care products looking more appealing to the consumers.   Getting Greener with Natural Fiber Ingredients As pet owners increasingly look for clean label, sustainable and natural products finding the right fiber ingredient is more important than ever. More recently, plant-derived co-products of the human food chain became a ripe source of innovation for fiber ingredients. Fibers made of local sourced apples, for example, are becoming a preferred choice in a variety of pet foods and treats because of its unique composition of insoluble and soluble fibers, as well as pectin. Apple fiber is typically made of upcycled pomace procured from juicing companies. From a functional standpoint, the pectin content helps bind moisture and oil in pet foods and treats to enhance processability, moistness and final texture. In semimoist foods it may even replace chemical emulsifiers and moisture-binding agents. On top of it, this type of fiber delivers nutritional benefits due to prebiotic effects and provides also a positive sustainability story for brands. Latest developments in the field of fiber ingredients provide plenty of new opportunities for innovation. As pet food product developers brainstorm the next big chewy dog treat or nutritionally complete cat food, they may want to consider some of the suggestions that offer ways to differentiate products and break into untapped areas in the pet food industry.   By: Peter Graff - Head of Business Unit Petfood & Aquafeed - JRS Animal Nutrition Source: All Pet Food Magazine    

BRF Pet bets on the natural Super Premium Category
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

BRF Pet bets on the natural Super Premium Category

The plant located in Ivoti, Rio Grande Sul, concentrates the production of the brand's feed, which bets on the natural super premium concept. In addition to it, other of the 20 lines in the portfolio are also manufactured on site. The flag's differential, which is the use of fresh ingredients, is present in the choice of suppliers, in the transport of the finished product. This differential strictly follows a market trend. Multispecies families boost natural market Previously seen as a trend for the future, natural pet food has already become a current demand. In the North American market, for example, 37% of pet parents already opt for natural feed. In addition, the humanization of pets has interfered, including the choice of ingredients for th eproduction of pet food BRF Pet in numbers Biofresh's journey begins before the arrival of BRF Pet. The brand belonged to HercoSul, which was acquired by the native food company in 2021. Another step in the expansion was the purchase, at the same time, of Mogiana, which is part of the current portfolio. As a whole, the conglomerate counts with 1,300 employees, 48 of whom have been working with the company for two decades or more, and 30% of the total staff are  women. With regard to production structures, the company hcounts with five industrial plants, four in Brazil and one in Paraguay. There is even potential for expansion. 'This is a consequence of market demand. We occupy the leadership in the segment. but we are always looking for opportunities to continue growing', says Denis Nakashima, head of marketing at BRF Pet .     If there is a desire to lead the feed segment in the future, in an extract from it, this objective has already been achieved. With its brands in the super premium natural segment, Biofresh and Guabi Natural, BRF is already at the top of the market. Among the two dozen brands produced, there are some that are exclusive to the foreign market. The company exports to more than 20 countries, including markets such as Russia, Nigeria and Oman. But the Latin American market is the main target, where it operates in 11 countries. Biofresh serves 3,600 pets. In the second half of 2022, the brand showed an increase in real revenue of 26%, compared to the same period of 2021. With the aim of being closer to each of these pets, BRF Pet has its own fleet of 44 vehicles and the help of more than 60 distributors. On the factory  Once at the manufacturing plant, the products don't even leave the truck before being tested by the company's laboratory. Based on the analyses, which can take hours depending on the content and quantity purchased, the company establishes its first barrier.
Sometimes, entire loads are even returned. 'We already signed return notes that indicated that the cargo would be destined for human consumption', reports Irina Munaro, technology and innovation consultant and responsible for the plant, highlighting the rigor imposed on the analyses. The machines are present throughout the entire production process – from the grinding of meat to the packaging. Fresh ingredients stay refrigerated until minutes before use. When filling, a technology used by BRF Pet to ensure greater durability for the products is the injection of nitrogen gas. This gas is responsible for reducing the action of oxygen, which prevents the pet food's oxidation process of pet food. Duly packaged and ready for being distributed, before the product enters the truck and hits the road, there is still one last step left. The conditions of the vehicle are studied and also the possible presence of pests, which would make transportation unfeasible. Currently, BRF Pet is already experiencing a moment of modernization of its fleet, having recently started its first route served by electric vehicles. The next innovation in the radar concerns partner distributors: it´s a test that will make it possible to recognize that other loads were loaded in that compartment and, with this information, avoiding any risk of cross contamination. By  Panorama PetVet

‘Peas of Mind’: Pulse Ingredients in Dog Food Not Linked to Heart Problems, Says New U of G Research
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

‘Peas of Mind’: Pulse Ingredients in Dog Food Not Linked to Heart Problems, Says New U of G Research

It's a reassuring finding for dog owners worried about grain-free diets, which have surged in popularity and now make up almost half of the dog food market in Canada.  The diets have been under scrutiny after 'pulses' – the collective term used for peas, lentils and beans – became associated with a serious heart condition in dogs called dilated cardiomyopathy, or DCM.  This latest U of G research, which appears this month in The Journal of Nutrition, found that dogs fed diets containing up to 45 per cent whole pulse ingredients and no grains over 20 weeks showed no indications of heart issues.  As well, the dogs' body composition altered less than 0.1 per cent from baseline no matter which diet they were on, suggesting they also maintained lean body mass.    'This study is the longest, controlled feeding study to date to assess cardiometabolic health in healthy adult dogs fed pulse-inclusive diets,' said lead author Dr. Kate Shoveller, a professor in the Department of Animal Biosciences in the Ontario Agricultural College and Champion Petfoods Chair in Canine and Feline Nutrition, Physiology and Metabolism.  Dr. Adronie Verbrugghe, clinical studies professor and Royal Canin Veterinary Diets Endowed Chair in Canine and Feline Clinical Nutrition at the Ontario Veterinary College (OVC), added: 'This research is important to help veterinarians make evidence-based diet recommendations for their patients. Some dogs might be healthy, but others could have specific health conditions for which protein sources and content are targeted.'  Pulses a dependable protein alternative in pet food Pulses are an attractive protein source in pet foods and need to be included in plant-based dog food formulations to provide sufficient dietary protein. Yet there have been concerns pulses may be limited in key amino acids for the body to make taurine, needed for proper heart.  Poor bioavailability of key amino acids has also been linked to inadequate protein absorption and muscle wasting in dogs.  To investigate the potential effects of pulse ingredients on cardiac function of healthy dogs, the researchers recruited 28 Siberian huskies for a randomized, controlled trial. Huskies are not genetically at risk of DCM, meaning any changes to their heart health would reflect diet, not genetics.   Each dog was assigned to a diet containing either zero, 15, 30 or 45 per cent whole pulse ingredients, specifically green and yellow peas, pinto beans, chickpeas and lentils. All diets included chicken as the animal protein source and were formulated with the same protein and fat levels.   All pulse ingredient concentrations reflected current formulas in commercial dog foods, said lead author Pawanpreet Singh, a U of G PhD student in animal biosciences.  'We wanted to keep all aspects of the diets the same except the amount of pulse ingredients so that any changes we saw in the dogs' cardiac function could be attributed to the differing amounts of pulses and not nutrient intake,' said Singh No changes to dogs' body composition or heart function Champion Petfoods funded the study and all experimental diets were processed in its facilities. The company did not influence the findings or conclusions of the study.   Echocardiograms were performed by veterinary cardiologist Dr. Shari Raheb, a professor in OVC's Department of Clinical Studies, to detect heart changes. Singh routinely collected blood samples to assess cardiac biomarkers or amino acid changes.   Verbrugghe and registered veterinary technician Shoshana Verton-Shaw performed scans to assess body composition at the beginning and end of the study, and all dogs were weighed every week.  'We took the highest precautions to monitor the health of these dogs. We made sure to conduct monthly health checks and evaluate their heart blood markers to make sure there were no signs of cardiac stress,' said Singh. 'We found that regardless of the amount of pulses consumed, none of the dogs showed changes to indicate the development of DCM or body composition changes.'  Shoveller said previous clinical studies were not able to pinpoint whether pulse ingredients played a role in DCM in dogs not genetically predisposed.  'Our data suggest the inclusion of pulse ingredients in dog food is not a causative factor and emphasizes the importance of understanding the nutrient composition of each ingredient and ensuring that foods exceed minimum nutrient requirements,' she said.  'Ultimately, pulses are a dependable protein alternative in the food industry and this study emphasizes their safety even when incorporated at high concentrations.'  Contact:  Dr. Kate Shoveller 
[email protected]  All Pet Food
 

New study: Krill effectively increases Omega-3 Index in pets
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

New study: Krill effectively increases Omega-3 Index in pets

In a new study conducted by the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and Aker BioMarine, scientists evaluated the performance of three different omega-3 sources in canine feeds. Of the three ingredients tested, the krill-based ingredient, QRILL™ Pet PL Nutri Plus (QRILL Pet's flagship krill meal product), was most effective in raising the dogs' Omega-3 Index. This study builds on a previous feeding trial conducted in 2020 by Aker BioMarine, which showed that of the dogs fed either QRILL Pet PL Nutri Plus (8%) or fish oil, the QRILL Pet group exhibited the greatest improvements to their Omega-3 Index after six weeks. In this new trial, the researchers aimed to build a greater understanding of how krill meal, at a lower inclusion level, would perform in comparison to two other omega-3 sources, namely fish and flaxseed. All three providing similar amounts of omega-3 to the study diets. 'The hypothesis we tested was whether krill, at a lower inclusion level of just 3% on a dry matter (DM) basis, would be as or more effective in raising the dogs' omega-3 levels than other ingredients when omega-3 content was similar. We believe that both the delivery molecule of omega-3 as well as the type of omega-3 in a diet matters. To understand this, we did a side-by-side comparison of EPA/DHA from krill with two other omega-3 sources (EPA/DHA from fish and alpha-linolenic acid from flaxseed) which both are commonly found in pet food today,' says scientist Hanna Lindqvist from Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.  4-week 3 -arm trial tests 3 different omega-3 ingredients in the dog feed Before launching the experiment, the omega-3 levels of the 45 participating Alaskan Huskies sled dogs were measured to establish a baseline. Researchers found that the Omega-3 Index for the dogs was at a low starting point (at 1.3% on average), a state that is not uncommon in pets, they report.      Over the next four weeks, the dogs received one of the three test feeds. The omega-3 ingredients were included in the raw food provided to the dogs twice daily. The trial was run during a low-training period for the dogs, meaning their dietary needs at the time were on par with the average active dog.  Key findings: Which omega-3 ingredient was most effective? Krill meal, in the form of QRILL Pet PL Nutri Plus, was most effective in raising the Omega-3 Index in the dogs – bringing it to an average of 2.4%. Fish meal was the second most effective source of omega-3, raising the Omega-3 Index to an average of 1.9%. Flaxseed (alpha-linolenic acid) had no significant effect on the dogs' Omega-3 Index.      'What we learned from this trial was that not every omega-3 source performs equally, and that both the delivery molecule of the omega-3`s as well as type of omega-3 makes a difference.  The phospholipid omega-3 in krill appears to be more effective than triglyceride omega-3 from fish or alpha-linolenic acid from flaxseed. There is an opportunity for commercial feeds to benefit from a more effective ingredient, and we found that even in lower doses, krill meal is still the most effective in terms of raising the Omega-3 Index in pets,' says Hanna Lindqvist.  About QRILL Pet QRILL Pet is a product of Aker BioMarine, a leading biotech innovator and Antarctic krill-harvesting company for consumer health and animal nutrition. The QRILL Pet product line consists of 3 products: PL NUTRI Plus (our flagship krill meal product) PL OMEGA Plus oil, and ASTA OMEGA Plus oil. When developing our functional marine ingredients for pets, we kept our focus on the needs of pets and pet food formulators. Aimed at keeping pets healthy, QRILL™ Pet is not only a superior omega-3 source but also contains a powerful antioxidant called astaxanthin, natural choline, and palatable marine proteins.  The unique distinction of krill omega-3s is that they are mainly bound to phospholipids. This superior marine ingredient is beneficial for cats, dogs, and even horses at every life stage.  By Qrill Pet Source: All pet Food 
 

Byproducts in pet Food - Do they add Extra Nutrients
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

Byproducts in pet Food - Do they add Extra Nutrients

What is a byproduct  Byproducts in pet food are what is left over when a product is produced. For example, in the United States, most consumers only eat the skeletal muscles of the animal. Therefore, organs including the liver, stomach, kidneys, bones, and blood are considered to be byproducts. These body parts are packed with taurine, which is critical for cats. This is why byproducts in pet food are so important, as the skeletal muscle actually contains minimal taurine levels. Amino acids are constituents of proteins, which act as the building blocks within the body of an animal. When a cat is deprived of taurine, they are more likely to experience heart failure as a result of cardiomyopathy or blindness due to retinal degeneration. The organ meats are also packed with protein, vitamins, and minerals, which we don't receive from skeletal muscle. While they might not be consumed frequently in the United States, in other countries, these byproducts are consumed regularly. A great example of this is within Scotland, where haggis, the country's national dish, is created from a sheep's stomach. This is then filled with a sheep's lungs, liver, and heart and then is topped up with spices, onions, and oatmeal Byproducts in Pet Food Examples A common ingredient that's found in pet food is brewer's yeast, which is a result of the beer production process. It is packed with B vitamins, amino acids, and minerals. Another example is vitamin E, which comes as a byproduct of soybean production. Also, other useful byproducts include molasses, wheat germ, whey, and tomato pomace. Human meals do also contain byproducts, which you might already eat. These include gelatine, which is part of the meat production process. Byproducts in pet food offer many great benefits for cats, dogs, and their owners. While you should always keep an eye on what your pet is eating and drinking, never take away anything which offers them a rich source of nutrients each day. Written by bygora

Diversified Diets
Formulation
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7+ MIN

Diversified Diets

Pet owners are incorporating more freeze-dried, air-dried and gently cooked options into their dogs' diets, thanks in part to the perception that these foods feature high-quality ingredients that offer multiple health benefits. Freeze-dried, air-dried and gently cooked diets were once viewed as meal toppers for dogs to enjoy as an occasional treat. However, today's pet owners are choosing to use these products regularly as an enhancement to their dogs' daily meals, said Molly Keveney, spokesperson for Champion Petfoods, the Edmonton, Alberta, Canada-based manufacturer of the Acana and Orijen brands. "Deterring flavor fatigue or mitigating potential dietary sensitivities are some of the reasons consumers continue to diversify their pet's food," she said. "Rotating dry food recipes alone is not cutting it, so pet lovers are looking for new ways to create crave-able meals that are more enticing and exciting for pets." Freeze-dried foods are great options for pet owners who want the benefit of frozen raw nutrition, Keveney noted. The freeze-drying process maintains the nutritional value of fresh ingredients by locking in flavor and nutrients, creating biologically appropriate nutrition for dogs and offering peace of mind for owners that want to amplify their pet's everyday meals, she added. "Our freeze-dried diets are made with 90 percent quality animal ingredients and are available in a variety of recipes," Keveney said. "Acana Freeze-Dried Food comes in two different sizes, patties or morsels, and features a savory bone broth for an added boost of flavor and protein." FOCUSED ON NUTRITION The humanization of pet food has been driving the market for alternative food formats such as freeze-dried, air-dried and gently cooked the past few years, according to industry insiders. "The alternative food category is one of the fastest growing in the pet space," said Dan Markenson, head of retail at Dr. Marty Pets, a Los Angeles-based pet food manufacturer that recently introduced a 48-ounce bag for all its recipes. "Pet parents are looking for ways to nutritionally build up their pet's food bowl by feeding whole foods and adding superfoods and extra nutrients where they can. A focus on whole real food that is bioavailable to the pet is what pet parents are looking for." Jason Ast, co-owner of Just Dog People, a pet store in Garner, N.C., has seen similar trends. "These food types are a great way to begin feeding dogs a more biologically appropriate diet," Ast said. "Freeze-dried foods have been popular at Just Dog People for several years now, and many people use these options as toppers and training treats." Innovation in this category has a broader focus on specific, health-targeted ingredients, especially those aimed at digestive health or joint health, according to insiders. Pet owners are looking to build a diet for their pets that drives optimum health and wellness, said Kelly Walters, brand leader of pet foods at Redbarn Pet Products, a pet food and treats manufacturer in Long Beach, Calif. "Consumers looking for better ingredients led to a premiumization of the category," Walters said. "They are also looking for ingredients to be less processed, which is driving the growth in the alternative categories. Air-dried, freeze-dried and gently cooked are all processed in ways that better maintain nutrients in the raw ingredients, as compared to a typical dog food kibble." Redbarn Pet Products released several trial-size options for its air-dried lines in December 2022 and will launch largesize options soon. "The trial sample sizes were driven by consumers who are looking for an opportunity to try out the product prior to making a more significant investment," Walters said. "Many pet parents have been interested in checking out the category, but prices have kept them from diving in. Once people try the product, they are hooked and are ready to make a commitment to feeding more regularly, whether as a full feed, topper or training incentive." Tyler Maneth, vice president of marketing at Ziwi USA, an Overland Park, Kan.-based pet food and treat manufacturer, said consumers are also looking for diets that offer variety, including textures, price points and ingredients "As pet parents continue to educate [themselves] and desire to provide their pets with better nutrition, manufacturers push to provide foods that meet and exceed their expectations for optimal health," Maneth said. "This also coincides with the quality of the ingredients and sourcing, with a strong focal point on ethical and sustainable practices being integral to the products." Ziwi recently made improvements to its air-dried line, which included increasing organ meat inclusions. Amy Snell, national sales manager for Northwest Naturals, a manufacturer in Portland, Ore., said the freeze-dried category has grown in popularity because it is so versatile. "Pet parents can use freeze-dried recipes as a complete and balanced treat," Snell said. "These diet options are great for training and as a topper due to the meat smell and palatability, and are perfect for traveling." With the awareness and growth of frozen raw, freezedried foods have become a great option for those who are uncomfortable handling raw. Pets still get the same nutritional benefits from diets in this category, but without the pet owner having to handle wet raw meat, insiders report. "Consumer awareness has increased, and pet parents want more wholesome and rewarding choices for their pets," said Christie Dilling, assistant manager and clinical pet nutritionist for We Lov Pets, which has four locations in Ohio. "They now know what is important in a dog's diet but still need convenience due to busy lifestyles. This makes air-dried, freeze-dried and gently cooked foods an extremely appealing choice." More shoppers understand the benefits of providing a more nutrient-dense diet for their pets, and air-dried and freeze-dried options help pet owners to do that in a more economical way than feeding a completely raw or homecooked diet, said Heather Blum, co-owner of Petagogy, which has three stores in Pittsburgh. "For many customers, these diets represent an entirely new way to feed their pets," Blum said. "Introducing them slowly as a way to boost an existing kibble diet has been an accessible way for many pet owners. Air-dried and freeze-dried diets especially can be used as toppers and are great for pets that are growing tired of basic kibble and need a boost to their bowls." CONSUMER EDUCATION Many retailers do a good job educating consumers about the best nutrition for their dogs, Keveney said. "It is a brand's responsibility to arm retailers with the information and resources needed to encourage more diverse feeding practices," Keveney said. "The nutritional benefits, production process and overall convenience factors are important qualities for retailers to highlight to help increase awareness around this pet food category." Retailers should inform customers about different manufacturing processes that are used to maintain more of the nutrients in the raw ingredients, and help them understand the benefits, Walters noted. "Shopping this alternative feeding space can be daunting for pet owners, between the different options and the higher price points," Walters said. "Retailers should continue to focus on the ingredients in the foods that manufacturers bring to them and splitting apart the marketing messages from the food those messages represent." Ziwi has an online training module available to its retail partners and their associates to help educate customers about its brand and products, Maneth said. "Taking advantage of the resources and training made available by brands is an absolute must," Maneth said. "Within the store, having a dedicated space for this category is extremely helpful so a store associate can easily walk and educate customers through the different options." More pet owners are discovering the power of raw foods for their pets. "Communication in the aisle is a great way to let pet parents understand the value of raw," Markenson said. "The scale of this category is at the point where pet stores can have alternative feeding sections that are differentiated from the kibble section and offer educational information on the power of raw food. In-store demos and sampling programs can help educate as well as demonstrate the palatability of many of these recipes." When retailers explain the biological nutritional needs of dogs, consumers are more inclined to try these diets."Once pet parents understand how convenient these diets can be, they can't wait to buy more," Dilling said. "For most of our customers feeding completely in these categories of food is just too expensive. When we explain that there are huge benefits for even using it as supplemental feeding, many pet parents are much more open to the idea of adding these nutritionally packed diets." Availability and acceptance helped these foods expand, and people are willing to try alternatives to kibble, Ast said. "The more you talk to your customers, the more you'll find that they are looking for alternatives to their dog's current diet," Ast said. "It is surprising how many people are receptive to feeding a non-kibble diet." Snell said starting with small steps can be valuable. "In the freeze-dried category, a little raw is better than no raw," Snell said. "Recommend the customer start with a treat or a topper. Starting small is a great way for pet parents to add nutrition to their dogs' current diets." BY ALEXIS MATTSON THIS ARTICLE IS BROUGHT TO YOU IN PART BY CHAMPION PETFOODS  

U of I study gives a thumbs up to carefully formulated vegan diets for dogs
Vegetable Origin
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3+ MIN

U of I study gives a thumbs up to carefully formulated vegan diets for dogs

New University of Illinois research shows at least two human-grade, lightly cooked vegan diets provide adequate nutrition for dogs. 'The trends of vegan foods and human grade foods are increasing for dogs. Because people are feeding these diets to their pets, it's important they be tested like all other foods to make sure they're safe and 'complete and balanced,'' says study co-author Kelly Swanson, professor in the Department of Animal Sciences, part of the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at U of I. Swanson's team tested two human-grade vegan formulas (with and without a grain ingredient) from Bramble against a leading brand chicken-based kibble diet. They fed the diets to beagles for three weeks and sampled the dogs' blood chemistry, fecal quality, and microbiome, the collection of microbes present in the poop. Their results are published in the Journal of Animal Science. The team also analyzed the foods themselves – the vegan diets were veterinary nutritionist-formulated mixtures of whole foods like lentils, garbanzo beans, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, apples, blueberries, peas, and carrots – and confirmed both vegan diets and the chicken-based diet met standards set by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) for 'complete and balanced' nutrition. 'One thing to remember is that animals don't have ingredient requirements, they have nutrient requirements. As long as they're consuming the essential nutrients in the correct amounts and ratios, dogs can be vegan, vegetarian, or meat-eaters,' Swanson says. 'Knowledge of ingredient composition and nutrient needs are critical, however. Anyone can slap together a vegan meal for their dog, but without careful formulation, you might have something that's really imbalanced.' In earlier studies, Swanson's group showed human-grade, fresh dog foods to be highly digestible, resulting in dramatically less stool. That wasn't exactly the case for the vegan diets in the current study. All diets were highly digestible, but the vegan diets didn't generate any more or less stool than the chicken diet.   'It's not a surprise, really. With these ingredients, there's more fiber and oligosaccharides, which could be good for dogs that need to stay regular,' Swanson notes. The research team was surprised to find certain blood metabolites – chemicals in the blood that can indicate health status – differed between the vegan diets and the chicken-based diet. Notably, blood triglycerides and cholesterol, measures of circulating fats, were significantly lower in dogs fed the vegan diets. Swanson says that could benefit obese pets and help maintain a healthy weight. When they analyzed the fecal microbiome and the chemicals produced by those microbes, the team noted more positive changes. 'There were some interesting and beneficial changes in the microbial community that I think reflect the blend of fibers that were present in the vegan diets. The fecal metabolites phenol and indole, both of which contribute to fecal odor, were dramatically decreased in those diets too. It's still going to smell, but probably less,' Swanson says. 'Overall, it looked like there were some beneficial shifts from a gut health perspective in dogs fed the vegan diets.' Swanson says he'd like to do head-to-head comparisons between human-grade diets with and without meat and dairy products, but for the first study showing how fresh vegan diets perform in dogs, the results are promising. 'No one had tested digestibility of these diets in dogs before this. We showed that these vegan diets resulted in desirable fecal characteristics, high nutrient digestibilities, and positive changes to certain blood and fecal metabolites,' he says. 'For people who are interested in feeding their pets a vegan diet that aligns with their personal values, the diets we tested are a good choice.' Swanson reiterates the diets were formulated by veterinary nutritionists, and that homemade vegan dog foods may not provide complete and balanced nutrition for dogs. The article, 'Apparent total tract macronutrient digestibility of mildly-cooked human-grade vegan dog foods and their effects on the blood metabolites and fecal characteristics, microbiota, and metabolites of adult dogs consuming them,' is published in the Journal of Animal Science [DOI: 10.1093/jas/skad093]. Additional authors, also from the Department of Animal Sciences and the Division of Nutritional Sciences in the College of ACES, include Leah Roberts and Patricia Oba. Bramble, Inc. funded the study. by Kelly Swanson

Seaweed for dogs
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

Seaweed for dogs

If you've ever taken your dog to the beach, you may have caught them trying to munch on the seaweed that's made its way to land. Dog food with seaweed is a nutritious snack that can boost your dog's overall wellness due to its iodine concentration. The safest way to take advantage of the benefits of seaweed for dogs is to use a powdered supplement or processed seaweed without seasoning. Adding a sprinkling of powdered seaweed for dogs can help them take advantage of its nutrient and mineral-based composition, including iodine Is seaweed safe for dogs? Seaweed is safe for dogs – so long as it's not wild seaweed. The issue with wild seaweed is that it shrinks due to heat exposure, meaning it will absorb water when it enters your dog's digestive system and expand, which could lead to blockages. Wild seaweed is also risky for your dog as it can contain pollutants that you could make your dog unwell. Processed seaweed is safe for dogs in small quantities. The best choice of seaweed dog food is a powder supplement or a small amount of processed seaweed free of seasoning or pollutants. Seaweed powder for dogs can make it easier for your dog to consume this nutrient-rich supplement or snack. You should always consult your vet before starting your dog on any new form of food. You'll also want to consider the quantity of dog food with seaweed that you're feeding your pet. Due to its iodine content, you want to avoid your dog overconsuming seaweed in any form. Seaweed for dog benefits If you've stumbled onto this article, you're probably wondering, 'is seaweed good for dogs?'. The answer is that seaweed snacks for dogs can be the perfect way to ensure your pet is getting their daily nutrients. Dogs eat seaweed for its nutrient-rich properties as it contains iron, iodine, magnesium, protein, and omega-3s. Your pet dog needs these nutrients just as much as you do. The sea may seem like an unusual place to look for a nutrient-rich snack, but our oceans contain more seaweed – at least 10,000 different types – than herbs that you'll find on land. With thousands of different types of seaweed, everything from their taste to colour and nutritional value can be different. Every variant of seaweed has its own nutrient makeup – but each contains the mineral Iodine – the major selling point of any seaweed supplements for dogs. It's an essential mineral for your dog's long-term health as it boosts energy levels, prevents thyroid issues, helps to calm nerves, and supports your dog's immune system. When your dog is deficient in iodine, it can lead to restlessness, unexplained weight gain, and heart and lung problems. Iodine isn't a mineral typically included in dog food, but the rise in hypothyroidism in dogs has led to an interest in dog food with seaweed for its iodine content. Kombu seaweed is the variant with the highest iodine content, although any form of seaweed without additional seasoning or pollutants is suitable for your dog. It's also rich in calcium, copper, and vitamins A, B, C, and E. The most popular seaweed for dogs is true kelp – also known as laminaria. This brown alga is made up of 25% protein with over 60 types of vitamins and minerals, along with more than 20 amino acids. Iodine isn't the only reason you should start using seaweed dog food.  When dogs eat seaweed, it can help promote the overall health of their skin and fur to prevent fur loss or skin irritation. Most seaweed for dogs is also an ideal source of vitamin B12, a necessary nutrient for maintaining your dog's nervous system and promoting their brain health. Incorporating seaweed snacks for dogs into your pet's diet can help improve their gut health and tackle constipation. Seaweed supplement for dogs With seaweed becoming a popular supplement and snack of choice for humans, it's no surprise that seaweed supplements for dogs are rising in popularity. Seaweed for dogs' benefits focus around its mineral and vitamin composition – but you want to be mindful of what type of seaweed you're giving your dog. Seaweed dog food is only suitable when it is not produced with additional seasoning. Adding a seaweed supplement for dogs into your pet's food is the best way to give them the benefits of seaweed. You can use seaweed powder for dogs to sprinkle into their food to boost their overall health. When you start using dog food with seaweed or seaweed powder for dogs, it's best to monitor your pet's reaction. Look out for any change in their behaviour, overall health, and energy levels. If your dog has pre-existing thyroid issues, it's best to consult your vet closely about how much seaweed you should incorporate into their diet. The easiest and safest way for your dog to consume seaweed is through supplements or by grounding seaweed into their food. You'll want to ensure that the seaweed supplement that you use is suitable for your dog's size and breed by Bygora 
 

KND Labs & ReaGenics Announce Partnership to Expand Food Line & Nutraceutical
Formulation
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2+ MIN

KND Labs & ReaGenics Announce Partnership to Expand Food Line & Nutraceutical

As a producer of many ingredient forms including powdered isolates, distillate oil, and liquid or powder water-soluble solutions, KND Labs currently serves many industries and is an ingredient partner to many of the world's largest product brands.  'As a proven partner across many industries from food and beverage to nutraceuticals, pet, and cosmetics, KND Labs is thrilled to expand our supply chain and product offerings through this partnership with ReaGenics,' said Nich Wilson, KND Labs president. 'This capability directly supports the company's growth goals and allows us to target, extract and commercialize revolutionary ingredients within the KND Labs platform we are known for.' ReaGenics is a Nes Tziona, Israel-based plant molecular harvesting company that provides technology to support the growth of living plant stem cells economically and at scale, without having to depend upon nature's elements. Through its proven technology and process, the company is able to access molecular materials that are of interest in various industries including food and beverage, herbal medicine, and other applications.  With processing plants in the Denver area, KND Labs will utilize the ReaGenics partnership to move into new areas of expertise in the coming years, while offering ReaGenics access to its established production facilities and customer distribution network. 'Our world urgently needs a way to keep up with the growing demands of medicines, food supply chains, and the problem of so many of the world's plant species on their way to extinction,' said ReaGenics CEO Dr. Michael Kagan. 'We believe ReaGenics will be part of the solution to ensure these global needs and challenges are met. This partnership with KND is an important first step.' The partnership will benefit both companies' growth efforts in the nutraceutical, food, and pet industries, with KND Labs focusing on making new products available. 'Many customers are looking to KND Labs for our industry expertise and scaling capabilities as they aim to diversify their ingredient supply chains,' said Dave 'Swany' Swanwick, KND Labs director of sales. "This partnership with ReaGenics enables us to offer a greater variety of ingredients, at scale, to our direct partners as well as for network marketing sellers of hemp plant-derived products, and it will allow us to further grow our footprint as the premier provider of high-demand nutraceutical ingredients. We are very excited to be improving supply chain access and commercializing rare ingredients worldwide.' Source : Pet Business

Growing Demand for Prebiotics in Pet Food
Vegetable Origin
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7+ MIN

Growing Demand for Prebiotics in Pet Food

For some time now, animal digestive health has been tracking the popularity seen in human nutrition. In fact, even before the pandemic had made pet owners more health conscious, a study showed that 76% of cat and dog owners believed that actively looking after their pet's digestive health was essential for their overall health.  Following its global research in 2021, BENEO was able to identify ten key drivers that cat and dog owners perceived were vital to making pet foods seem healthier.  Ten key drivers to healthier pet food perceptions Almost 90% of cat and dog owners said that using natural ingredients was their number one way for pet food to seem healthier to them, closely followed by using less or no preservatives and additives. Reducing fat and adding fibre were seen as strong influencers by over 80% of pet owners, and of similar importance was having recognisable ingredients on the label, that were also not genetically modified. Three quarters also wanted to know where the ingredients had been sourced from and they wanted to see a short ingredients list on pack. Interestingly, plant-based ingredients and the addition of prebiotics also made products seem healthier to over 70% of cat and dog owners.  Digestive health becomes mainstream With added fibre and prebiotics two of the key drivers to make a pet food seem healthier to pet owners, it is no surprise that digestive health has well and truly moved into the mainstream. In fact, 83% of dog and 84% of cat owners consider digestive health as extremely or very important. Today around 1 in 4 global new pet food products promotes a digestive health claim or prebiotic benefit on package.  The link between a pet's digestive health and their overall health has been made by pet owners, however, not all fibres are the same. At present, a wide range of fibres can be used in dog foods. These include insoluble fibre sources such as cellulose or blends of insoluble and soluble fibres, which include sugar beet pulp and wheat bran, as well as fully soluble fibre sources such as inulin-type fructans. Based on the fibre type, they behave differently in a pet's digestive system, significantly influencing their potential digestive health benefits. Why is prebiotic fibre important? Dietary fibre is the indigestible part of plant material and can be soluble, insoluble or a mix of the two. Insoluble fibres can create bulking and a longer feeling of fulness, while also supporting bowel function. Soluble fibres include fermentable fibres (such as those found in sugar beet pulp) and prebiotic fibres. While both are dissolved and fermented in the colon, only prebiotic fibre sources like inulin-type fructans specifically feed healthy gut bacteria when they reach the colon. Prebiotics are 'a substrate that is selectively utilized by host microorganisms conferring a health benefit'.  Both the criteria for feeding beneficial bacteria and conferring a health benefit need to be fulfilled for an ingredient to be defined as a prebiotic. In comparison to other fermentable fibres, chicory root fibres - namely chicory inulin and oligofructose - are natural prebiotics for many animals like cats and dogs and they support a healthy microbiota along with other health benefits.  Products masquerading as prebiotic With almost 80% of respondents stating that 'prebiotic' on-pack communication affects their interest in buying a certain food for their pets,  this has led to some suppliers making unfounded 'prebiotic' claims for their products. In the pet food industry at present, there are a profusion of products that are being promoted as prebiotic but in fact aren't (such as fermentable fibres-containing ingredients, or even resistant starches). However, the only established prebiotics that have been scientifically proven to selectively encourage the growth of good bacteria and deliver related health benefits in humans - with corresponding evidence in pets as well - are inulin-type fructans, including BENEO's natural chicory root fibres Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose.      When the chicory root fibres reach the colon, they are selectively fermented by the good microbiota residing in the pets' intestine, such as bifidobacteria, and selectively stimulate their growth and proliferation. Additionally, their fermentation by selected microbiota results in the production of Short-Chain Fatty Acids (SCFAs), namely acetate, propionate, and butyrate. These fatty acids decrease the lumen pH in the gut and enhance its structure. They also strengthen the gut mucosa's barrier against pathogenic bacteria, as butyrate is the primary source of energy for the intestinal cells.  Scientifically proven prebiotic effect BENEO's Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose have been studied extensively for over two decades both in human and animal nutrition, and the scientific foundation for their prebiotic effect is strong. In human nutrition, a recent systematic review with meta-analyses that applied the Cochrane methodology (considered the strongest methodology in the hierarchy of scientific evidence) and was based on intervention studies, confirmed the prebiotic effect of inulin-type fructans sourced from the chicory root.  In dogs and cats, studies have shown that the selective fermentation of chicory root fibres Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose by specific beneficial bacteria leads to an increase in SCFA production, and  is linked with nutritional benefits for pets, that go beyond the gut. For instance, as part of their prebiotic effect and effect on digestive health, chicory root fibres support calcium and mineral absorption in dogs. ,  Further research has shown that chicory root fibres can support blood sugar management in dogs , as well as weight management in both, dogs and cats.  Absorption of minerals and bone health The absorption of minerals is essential to an animal's growth and bone strength. From their selective fermentation which produces SCFA, inulin-type fructans reduce the luminal pH and nurture the intestinal mucosa with butyrate, thereby allowing for additional calcium absorption in the lower gut (the colon). Studies with oligofructose have demonstrated increased mineral uptake in dogs, and among others calcium, therefore supporting bone health.    Supporting weight and blood sugar management Being overweight or obese are common in companion animals, and according to a 2019 report from the UK's Pet Food Manufacturers' Association, 51% of dogs and 44% of cats in the UK are classified as such.  As well as supporting a pet's intestinal health, chicory root fibres also show positive effects related to weight management in pets and blood sugar management in dogs. First studies show that including Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose in a pet's diet can curb their appetite, improve satiety and hence decrease voluntary food intake. In doing so, chicory root fibres help to maintain the healthy condition of a pet's body. Additionally, since inulin-type fructans are non-digestible carbohydrates and dietary fibre, they do not trigger a rise in postprandial blood glucose or insulin concentrations. Hence, they support blood sugar management in dogs. What's more, studies in dogs have shown that feeding them with chicory prebiotics can allow for a lower blood sugar response after a meal ,  and this benefit can extend to a subsequent meal taken hours later, even if that meal doesn't include chicory root fibres; which is called the second meal effect.  Support of renal health in cats Cats are sensitive to kidney disorders as they age, and one indicator of a problem can be elevated levels of blood urea nitrogen. Typically, in healthy animals the liver produces urea to clean up the nitrogen from the blood, which then travels to the kidneys through the bloodstream, where it is then filtered and excreted in the urine. In ageing cats, this renal metabolism might become less effective and nutritional solutions, amongst other things, could be supportive. Inulin-type fructans such as Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose have been shown to induce a shift in nitrogen metabolism, through increased nitrogen excretion via the feces ,  and decreased clearance in the urine, therefore representing a potentially valuable nutritional support for renal function.  With owners concerned about ingredients labels and their pet's long-term health, chicory inulin-type fructans are well placed for both cat and dog food product development that delivers natural support to a pet's intestinal health. BENEO's Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose are produced from non-GMO chicory roots, which are locally sourced from farmers close to the production sites. Processed in two state-of-the-art plants in Belgium and Chile, both of which have food and feed certification, these functional dietary fibres meet the highest safety and quality standards. They are acknowledged as feed materials in the EU  and some of them by the AAFCO in the US.  Orafti® Inulin and Oligofructose can be qualified as natural ingredients and used in both dry and wet pet foods, or in snacks. BENEO offers a customisable range of chicory prebiotics that is suitable for a wide range of life stages and animals.  Natural, recognisable, and health-promoting ingredients are key drivers to pet food purchasing. With more and more owners making label-based choices, BENEO's chicory root fibre ingredients are valuable assets that help manufacturers deliver quality pet food products with a range of health benefits, and whose natural credentials appeal to pet parents. For further information on BENEO and its ingredients, please visit: www.beneo.com and www.beneo.com/news or follow BENEO on Twitter: @_BENEO or LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/beneo  BENEO-Animal Nutrition offers a broad range of natural ingredients with nutritional benefits. The product range is comprised of vegetable proteins, digestible carbohydrates, prebiotic chicory root fibres and specialty rice ingredients. BENEO-Animal Nutrition extends BENEO´s unique expertise in human food to the world of pet food, livestock feed and aqua feed. BENEO, a division of the Südzucker Group, employs more than 1000 people and has production units in Belgium, Chile, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands
  Source:  BENEO source references for this article are available on request  

ADM president: Feed additives market – 2023 and beyond
Formulation
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5+ MIN

ADM president: Feed additives market – 2023 and beyond

According Roig, there are 4 main dynamics will affect the 2023 additives market. Global politics 'One factor is global politics,' he explains. 'We have increased tension between large countries, mainly US-China tensions and the upheaval with Ukraine and Russia. This has caused a second factor to emerge, disruption of global value chains and a corresponding increased focus on food security.' Food security Roig notes that the entire global feed industry is re-evaluating which feed product categories are critical to food security and which products should be produced in-country. He notes that as it stands right now, most global production of vitamins and amino acids and fermentation-based feed ingredients are primarily produced in China. Energy security & prices Energy security has also come to the forefront due to rising global political upheaval. Because of this, says Roig, the cost of making feed additives and getting them to market will continue to be high going into 2023. Europe is experiencing natural gas and electricity shortages, and high electricity and energy prices are also now the norm in North America. High fuel costs are also making global transport of ingredients and finished products by sea and land more expensive. 'This is challenging for the industry in terms of margins and pricing,' says Roig. Plant-based protein food A fourth factor is the growth of plant-based protein food products over the last few years, mostly in North America. 'There are many lessons being learned about how to make plant protein foods efficiently, and if cost points come down and if it is scaled up as some expect it to scale, we may see plant protein replacing animal protein at scale in developing countries,' Roig explains. 'There may be a bridge effect in this, a leap-frogging like what happened with phone technology, skipping over landlines and going right to cell phones. Also, the cost curve for making cultured meat is coming down and this may also displace livestock production.' 2022 summary When asked the major issues for the global feed industry in 2022, Roig says that supply has not been too problematic. However, there has been a lowering of demand due to a mix of cost pressures and inflation for consumers. That is, people are eating less meat. Demand for feed ingredients has also been lowered by the decreased production of pigs and poultry due to African swine fever and avian influenza outbreaks in various parts of the world over the last few years. However, Roig says aquaculture has been growing and that will continue to occur. There have been supply chain disruptions for some specific ingredients, but Roig notes that some categories like amino acids have benefited from these disruptions. That is, because of tensions with China, amino acid firms based in other countries have stepped in to fill market needs. Looking forward to 2023 – 4 major levers 'When I look at 2023 and beyond, I think the industry will have to keep a close watch on 4 major levers,' says Roig. Industry structure 'One is whether the industry structure and competitive environment is sustainable. We have seen much consolidation in Europe and China and other parts of the developed world in the compound feed industry (commercial feed) but in the ingredients and pre-mix sector as well. How these industries will scale themselves in this tough environment remains to be seen.' Conversion efficiency The industry must also keep watch on the importance of conversion efficiency. Roig explains that a great deal of progress has been made with increased feed efficiency in developed countries but there is also a lot of opportunity there for further progress. 'If you can get it higher in poultry and aquaculture, the more animal protein will become viable compared to plant-based protein and/or cultured meat,' he says. Consumer demands The feed and livestock industries must also stay aware of the consumer desire for health and wellness – including a desire for less or no antibiotics in livestock production, especially those used for disease prevention and higher production efficiencies. More care must be taken to address livestock health, says Roig, and reduce early-stage mortality. Therefore, Roig foresees health and welfare product categories will see stronger demand – both those that prevent disease like mycotoxin binders and probiotics, particularly in early-stage production, and botanical products that improve digestion, reduce inflammation and increase feed uptake. One example from ADM is their AquaTrax product, based on published peer-reviewed research on Pichia guilliermondii, a novel yeast with demonstrated positive effects on shrimp immune function. Among other findings, multiple in vivo challenge tests involving various pathogens show approximately 80% higher survival rates in shrimp fed P. guilliermondii compared to the control. Sustainability 'Sustainability is also an issue the industry must leverage,' notes Roig. 'People want the least climate impact and water use possible in meat, milk and egg production. Mechanisms to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions in the whole life cycle of the animal are needed. The use of seaweed additives in the diet of ruminants to virtually eliminate methane has been a huge step forward. About a fifth of the world's carbon emissions are from agriculture and most of that is from ruminants. It will continue to be important for livestock farming to prove that it is reducing emissions.' On the ingredient availability side, Roig says shipping rates have calmed down, and production of amino acids and vitamins has resulted outside of China. 'So availability concerns for ingredients are not high,' says Roig. 'The costs are still high but they are on an improvement trend.' Long term outlook Roig predicts that over the next 5 or 10 years, growth rates in the industry will not be what has been expected. 'Consolidation is part of company strategic thinking now, and the realisation that we are in a lower demand environment, as mentioned, will make the industry look at animal health, sustainability and higher conversion efficiency,' he says. There will be growth in animal-based protein (layers and broilers) in Africa, if it is not displaced by plant-based protein, and Roig also expects growth in poultry production in Mexico. 'The other market that will perhaps grow the most is aquaculture and swine in Asia,' he says. 'Those in Asian countries are not willing to move away from animal protein anytime soon. Fish and poultry are the most efficient feed converters, so that's where the growth will be, and they also offer good value proposition for sustainability and animal health.' Environmental impact figures According to a 2013 FAO study, animal agriculture accounts for 7-8 gigatonnes of CO2-eq emissions, or about 15% of the total 50 billion gigatons emitted globally. Global estimates of emissions by species* Source: All About Feed 

Plant-based proteins for more sustainable pet food
Vegetable Origin
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5+ MIN

Plant-based proteins for more sustainable pet food

According to the latest data, the number of dogs and cats in the world is around 471 and 370 million respectively, however, this population is constantly increasing, especially due to Covid-19 when many people decided to adopt a pet for company. This has resulted in a huge increase of pet food production, with annual worldwide sales currently at 102.6 bn USD. This in turn, also has consequential impacts on the planet. Environmental impact What is the global environmental impact of the pet food industry? To produce dry food for our dogs and cats, around 41-48 million hectares of land (an area twice the size of the UK) is used annually. This is linked to 56–151 million tons of CO2 emissions annually, which represents 1,1% − 2,9% of global agricultural emissions. The main cause of this problem is due to the high amount of meat included in pet food. To produce meat, land is needed for both livestock breeding and for the crops to produce their feed. Moreover, a consistent component of commercial pet food are animal by-products (ABPs). To be in line with the latest human trends, the usage of ABPs will most likely be reduced in the coming years. The decrease of ABPs in pet food would be also important for sustainability reasons. In fact, contrary to the common belief that ABPs are zero-impact ingredients, their use provides a financial return to livestock industry that incentives increased animal production, with negative consequences on the environment. Therefore, to reduce the impacts of ABPs, meat industry can find some alternative and maybe more sustainable uses of them, such as in fertiliser and as biofuel, creating a new balance in the market. Switching to plant-based products Data shows the need to minimise the use of animal proteins and the need to replace these products with more efficient plant-based products which are sustainably grown and harvested. This is not only better for the planet, but also for our pets. According to the review research of Mueller et al. (2016), the most common food allergens causing negative cutaneous reactions in dogs (see figure 1) are beef (34%), dairy products (17%), chicken (15%), lamb (14,5%) and wheat (13%). A similar situation (also figure 1) can be found in cats, where the main food allergens were reported to be beef (18%), fish (17%), chicken (5%), wheat and dairy products (4%) and lamb (3%). To conclude, partly replacing meat and fish products with plant-based ingredients will most likely also help to reduce food-derived allergic reactions in pets. Organic and vegan Taking this all into account, it is not a surprise that we are seeing a huge increase of pet food trends such as; natural, organic, sustainable, vegetarian and vegan. In fact, recent market research (see figure 2) shows that the global organic petfood market value is expected to grow from 4,9 billion USD in 2020 to 9,1 billion USD in 2028. The global vegan pet food market value is expected to grow from 9,6 billion USD in 2020 to 15,6 billion USD by 2028. In the future we also expect more human food trends to influence the pet food market. For example, one currently emerging human trend that could potentially become popular for pets is the flexitarian (or flexible vegetarian) diet. This means reducing, without eliminating, the consumption of meat and animal protein in favour of plant-based proteins. All these trends are starting to increase the demand for alternative, non-animal protein ingredients in pet food. Innovative plant-based proteins Due to the popularity of plant-based ingredients, the percentage of plant-based proteins in pet food formulations has increased. The most used products are traditional ingredients such as; corn gluten meal, vital wheat gluten and soy protein, as well as other options like rice, pea, potato and sunflower. More recently, innovative ingredients like single cell protein and Lemna protein, have started to make an appearance in pet food formulations. Various solutions Since there are several plant-based ingredients currently available on the market, it is important to choose the right product for each application. Below are listed some possible plant-based solutions with their recommended usage in pet food formulations. Rice protein Rice protein is a great ingredient for both wet and dry pet food which is particularly beneficial for hypoallergenic diets and in formulations for puppies and kittens. It is highly digestible, has a balanced amino acids profile and is a source of energy. Pea protein When it comes to grain free, gluten free and hypoallergenic diets, a perfect solution is pea protein. Thanks to its high digestibility and palatability, pea can be used in all kinds of formulations. It also acts a stabilizer, improving the consistency of pet food. Another great solution for hypoallergenic and grain/gluten free diets, is potato protein, characterized by a highly digestible and balanced amino acid profile. Sunflower protein Last but not least, another sustainable and natural protein source is sunflower protein. This protein source can be used in both dry and wet pet food, also acting as a colouring agent. It can be a great solution for grain/gluten free and hypoallergenic diets, it is highly digestible and has a neutral taste that does not create palatability issues. Single cell proteins and Lemna protein In addition to sustainable ingredients, more innovative products have started to appear in the pet food ingredient market, such as single cell proteins or Lemna protein. Single cell proteins are the dried microbial cell or total protein extracted from pure microbial cell culture (algae, bacteria, filamentous fungi, yeast). Due to its origin, it can be successfully used in all kinds of pet food diets, i.e. hypoallergenic, grain free, natural, etc. Water lentils or Lemna protein is highly digestible and palatable, with a high level of antioxidants and minerals, like calcium and phosphorous. Thanks to its omega 3 content, it is also a good solution to improve immunity and skin and coat conditions. Yeast-based protein Yeast products can also be used as sustainable alternative protein sources for animal products. Beside the more traditional brewer's yeast, pet food diets can also be supplemented with other yeast-based products like yeast extract, hydrolysed yeast or autolysed yeast. The benefits of these products are mainly related to the high palatability and digestibility, plus their good content of MOS, β-glucans and nucleotides for a better immunity. As a leading global life science ingredients distributor, Barentz Animal Nutrition can supply all the above-mentioned plant-based proteins and help pet food manufacturers find the right products for their formulations. By barenz  Source: PetFood Pro  For more information visit https://www.barentz.com/animal-nutrition/pet-food/    

Dramatic changes to pet food labels proposed by AAFCO
Formulation
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4+ MIN

Dramatic changes to pet food labels proposed by AAFCO

 Well, there is good news on this front! The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) published their proposed changes to pet food labels recently and the public comment period ended on October 31st. These new changes have been in the works since before 2018 and, if approved, would be added to the AAFCO model regulations, which are published yearly. These changes even after approval wouldn't be implemented immediately – manufacturers would likely have several years to get in full compliance. However, as they have been in the works for so long, it's likely that many manufacturers are anticipating the changes and so, if approved, we could start seeing new labels come out relatively soon after the final guidelines are published (which could be as soon as 2023 or 2024). With the caveat that these are just proposed changes, here are some of the highlights: 1- The Guaranteed Analysis will be replaced with a white box called 'Pet Nutrition Facts' that is designed to look like the 'Nutrition Facts' box on human foods. This box will include the calories per cup or can or other common unit, how many calories come from protein, fat, and carbohydrate, and the amounts of protein, fat, fiber, and moisture plus any additional nutrients that the manufacturer wants to highlight.  There will be variations for different size packages, but the example below would be similar to what would be seen on most dry food packages.While I'm all for additional information and a more standardized format, the proposal to provide nutrient concentrations based on cups or cans or other volume units is really frustrating as comparing the amounts of nutrients between 1 cup of two different dry foods, or between 1 cup of dry food and a can of wet food will be useless if the foods provide different amounts of calories in that same volume unit! In previous posts, we've explained why the best way to compare nutrients between foods is on a calorie or energy basis, and these new labels are an opportunity to 'do it right' that AAFCO seems to be ignoring. AAFCO mockup from 2018. Since then, the 'intended use' line has been removed, but the rest is similar in the latest proposal 2- More clarity on nutritional adequacy. We're discussed 'AAFCO statements' or 'nutritional adequacy statements' before – they are the one item on a pet food label that lets you know whether the food contains all essential nutrients for a particular life stage of a pet. Instead of playing hide and seek with the statement on a large bag full of marketing or in micro print on a small can, it has been proposed that manufacturers will include specific icons on the front of the package to make it clear from a glance whether a product is complete and balanced and for what life stages it is appropriate. If a diet isn't nutritionally complete, such as a treat or a food topper or mixer, this will also be clearly stated. This is a very welcome change as there are a number of diets currently on the market that are not nutritionally balanced, but are labeled in a way that can mislead consumers into thinking that they are balanced. 3- Fiber concentrations on the new label will reflect total dietary fiber, like on human foods, rather than crude fiber. This really excites nutrition nerds like me because crude fiber measurements include less than half of the fiber in some foods, so it is a poor choice to use to compare foods and nutritionists have been complaining about crude fiber for years! Total dietary fiber is a much more accurate measurement of the fiber in a diet. 4- Changes in rules for large breed puppy diets that have undergone feeding trials. Currently, diets that are labeled as being appropriate for large breed puppies (over 70 lb adult weight as defined previously by AAFCO) can either be 'formulated to meet' the AAFCO nutrient profiles for large breed puppies, which put an additional limitation on the calcium concentration compared to diets for smaller puppies, or they can complete a feeding trial. However, that feeding trial is not currently required to be in large breed puppies nor is the calcium required to be limited as in diets that are 'formulated to meet' for large breeds. The new proposed regulations will close that loophole by giving manufacturers the choice of doing a feeding trial in large breed puppies, or doing a feeding trial in smaller puppies but meeting the calcium guidelines in the AAFCO nutrient profiles for large breed growth. While I'd prefer a requirement to use large breed puppies in feeding trials for large breed puppy diets, this change will be an improvement from the current regulations. 5- Instructions for safe handling. Packages will now require the safe handling instructions to be included, which could be in the form of standardized icons for how to store the food, such as to keep frozen or refrigerated, keep in a cool, dry place, etc. Proposed safe handling instruction icons, AAFCO 2022 While these proposed changes aren't perfect, they address a number of the issues that my colleagues and I have had with the current labels for many years. The biggest remaining issue is the current plan to have the Pet Nutrition Facts boxes report nutrients based on volume measurements rather than calories. I know that many colleagues submitted complaints about this specific proposal, so fingers crossed that AAFCO will reconsider this plan.  We'll keep you posted! by Cailin R. Heinze, VMD, MS, DACVIM (Nutrition)  

Aker BioMarine enters into partnership with leading Chinese pet food brand
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

Aker BioMarine enters into partnership with leading Chinese pet food brand

As one of the largest pet food manufacturers in China, Fullpet is poised for market success and together with QRILL Pet, will continue to explore areas of science research, technology and consumer insight. The partnership will heavily focus on the customization of raw materials, sharing best in class practices from both parties to jointly promote the development of pet health food. The agreement signing took place during the 5th annual China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai earlier this month. This is the second signing since the 4th CIIE event in which Aker BioMarine and Fullpet Co. first entered into a partnership. Currently, Fullpet utilizes QRILL Pet to produce tailor made pet staple foods, which not only effectively improves the nutritional value and functional performance of pet food, but also wins the recognition and support of consumers in China. QRILL Pet, Positioned for Growth in China China is the world's largest market for marine ingredients and it is an important strategic growth area for Aker BioMarine. One of the key factors for Aker BioMarine's development of the Chinese market is having a local team that consists of well-experienced professionals within the pet food industry present in the region. 'China is an extremely fast developing pet food market and we are already making strides with Fullpet Co.,' says Matts Johansen, CEO, Aker BioMarine. 'At Aker BioMarine, we are much more than an ingredient supplier. We are a collaborative partner who brings valuable insights, introduces new market opportunities, and guides our customers for growth and product expansion across all aspects of the supply chain, even down to marketing. By strengthening this strategic partnership and heavily focusing on research, sustainability, technology and consumer insights, we can ensure success in the Chinese market and together we will continue to upgrade pet health food in China.' "In the past year, we formed an incredible partnership with Aker BioMarine, recognizing not only the quality of their ingredients, but the quality attitude of their team members,' says Ms. Zheng Zhen, the deputy general manager of Fullpet Co. 'This level of excellence coincides with the outlook and expectations of Fullpet. Aker BioMarine has complete control of their supply chain and full competency when it comes to product development and promotion. We look forward to continuing our work with Aker BioMarine to improve the health of pets in the field of exploration.'  About Fullpet Co. Fullpet Co. was founded in 2005, the main business is the research and development, production and sales of pet food. Known as "Foxconn of pet food industry", Fullpet Co. is one of the largest pet food manufacturers in China. Fullpet Co. is a national high-tech enterprise in Shanghai. At the same time, Fullpet Co. was recognized as the Enterprise Technology Center of Songjiang District in Shanghai and the pilot enterprise of patent work in Songjiang District, and was approved by the Shanghai Academician Expert Workstation Guidance Office to establish the first expert workstation in the field of pet food research in Shanghai. By Aker Biomarine Source: All Pet Food
 

The Power of Krill for Dogs & Cats
Animal Origin
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5+ MIN

The Power of Krill for Dogs & Cats

Though they are teensy ocean creatures, krill are packed with vital nutrition that can help our land-dwelling cats and dogs live a long, vibrant life. No matter the age, size, or breed of your pet, krill can provide them with crucial nutrients that nourish and fuel the entire body. And that means more time and energy for all their favorite things — from curtain-climbing to frisbee fetch. There's a reason krill should be on your radar — and in your pet's bowl. Actually, a LOT of reasons. So let's dive in… The Power of A Single Ingredient Krill is packed to the brim with nutrition — and yet, it's just one ingredient. One ingredient means no preservatives, no artificial additives, and no fortifying. It's just plain krill — high-quality nutrition straight from the ocean. All the good stuff and none of the bad. So what exactly is all that good stuff? What makes krill so vital for our cats and dogs? 1. Omega 3  Krill is full of omega-3 fatty acids. We're talking good fat. Omega 3s promote a healthy inflammatory response throughout your pet's entire body and benefit everything from the heart to the immune system. Cats and dogs can't produce omega 3 on their own, so they absolutely need to be eating omega-rich foods. Not only that, but it has to be the right kind of omega 3s — with DHA and EPA fatty acids. This form is readily available for the carnivore's body to use — a.k.a. exactly what ferocious Mr. Fluffums needs. And that's exactly the kind you will find in krill.  Plant-based sources of omega 3, on the other hand, contain ALA, which isn't as bioavailable to your pet — and therefore not as beneficial. So be on the lookout for meat based sources of omega 3, which contain that vital DHA and EPA. Omega 3 with EPA and DHA Krill (of course) Grass-fed beef Trout Salmon Anchovies Mackerel Sardines Omega 3 with ALA Flaxseeds Hemp Chia seeds Walnuts Soy One last thing: adding omega 3 to the bowl is especially vital for kibble-fed pets. Kibble usually provides a lot of omega 6 and hardly any omega 3 — and it's all about a balanced ratio with these two omegas. Too much omega 6 and not enough omega 3 can lead to inflammation and health problems. So don't hold back when you add omega 3 to the bowl! 2. Phospholipids Phospholipids deliver the omega 3 right to where your pet's body needs it most and help the body absorb a greater amount. This makes krill a super efficient and high-quality source of omega 3s. Nutrients aren't useful unless the body can actually use them, and phospholipids make it possible for the body to maximize the omega 3s and really reap the benefits. 3. Choline Krill also contains choline, an essential nutrient shown to promote brain, heart, and liver health. Not bad. Not bad at all 4. Astaxanthin Astaxanthin is known as 'nature's most powerful antioxidant.' It's hundreds of times more powerful than other antioxidants, which means its free-radical scavenging ability is unparalleled.  Antioxidants neutralize free-radicals in the body, which prevents oxidative stress (cell damage) and premature aging. Filling the bowl with antioxidant-rich foods gives your pet the tools their body needs to stay healthy and strong — especially as they age. And here's a hot tip for kitty parents — cats especially need meat sources of antioxidants (like astaxanthin!) because cats aren't meant to have loads of leafy greens. Dogs can thrive with a combination of plant-based and meat-based antioxidants (yes, you should give your dog spinach!), but cats are obligate carnivores, which means meat is the name of the game pretty much 24/7. This makes krill absolutely crucial to a kitty's diet — it's a meat protein and nature's most potent antioxidant all in one. And that's win/win. The Power of Sustainable Choices There's another piece to consider when you decide to fill your pet's bowl with krill: we want healthy pets, but we also want a healthy planet — which means paying attention to our marine ecosystems and making sustainable choices. Always look for manufacturers that source from fisheries that are committed to sustainability and minimizing our environmental impact (look for the Marine Stewardship Council label). In our Simple Food Project recipes, we only use wild-caught krill. Our MSC-certified supplier is one of the most sustainable fisheries worldwide, with a deep commitment to conservation. They created a revolutionary technology called Eco-harvesting, which utilizes a hose to collect krill and bring it on board. This ensures that no other marine wildlife is harmed in the process. This kind of technology and conscientiousness allows us to care for our pets and our planet simultaneously. As you peruse your krill options, you may come across chews and oils, but our recommendation is ground krill — which is the entire krill. Ground krill is by far the most sustainable option. In order to produce oils and chews, manufacturers extract oil from the krill — and then throw away what remains. This is especially true for how humans use krill (since humans typically don't want to eat a whole krill). If the rest of the krill isn't used for anything, this practice is wasteful.  That's where ground krill comes in. Ground krill uses the entire krill — including the parts that would otherwise be discarded after oil extraction. So when you choose ground krill, you're also choosing an option that complements the human industry, provides your pet with maximum nutrition and honors the krill and marine ecosystem. The Power of Krill Preventive care is incredibly powerful, and adding krill to the bowl is one of the best things you can do for your pet's long-term health. Krill provides the body with vital nutrition during every phase of life — from developing puppy brains to aging seniors. Krill can: Boost the immune system Encourage a healthy inflammatory response Defend against free radical cell damage Promote healthy aging Support growth and development Foster heart health Balance the Omega 6 : Omega 3 ratio Elevate a kibble diet Support overall health and wellbeing That's why Dr. Bessent added ground krill into every one of our Simple Food Project Recipes. And if your pet needs a little extra, it's as easy as adding ground krill like Pure Krill to the bowl. Just be ready for your pet to go crazy for that fishy flavor. Regardless of how you feed krill, you'll be taking a concrete step toward a healthier pet. The krill will nourish the entire body, allowing your favorite four-legger to start reaping the health benefits. by Krill Pet 
 

ADM celebrates 120th anniversary
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

ADM celebrates 120th anniversary

ADM, formally known as Archer-Daniels-Midland Company and one of the world's largest human and animal nutrition companies with 41,000 employees in around 200 countries, celebrated its 120th anniversary. ADM was incorporated on Sept. 30, 1902, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, as a regional linseed oil business. Today, ADM – with 41,000 employees serving customers in nearly 200 countries – is an indispensable global agricultural supply chain manager and processor, a premier human and animal nutrition company, a trailblazer in groundbreaking solutions to support healthier living, a cutting-edge innovator in replacing petroleum-based products, and a leader in sustainability. 'Over the past 120 years, our company has evolved from a regional startup into an irreplaceable leader providing needed nutrition to billions around the globe. We've transformed at many moments along the way, but unlocking the power of nature to enrich lives has always been at the heart of everything we do,' said Juan Luciano, Chairman and CEO. 'Every day, our 41,000 colleagues demonstrate our purpose and our values, not only by feeding the world, but by building a stronger, better future, whether through innovations in sustainability, or our commitment to the communities where we work and live. I'm proud of the work they've done and the journey we've taken together, and I'm excited about our bright future.' To celebrate the milestone, ADM conducted a Fight Hunger Challenge to bring employees together around the world to raise money for hunger relief. As a result, ADM Cares has donated 1.2 million meals in partnership with the World Food Program, Feeding America and Food Banks Canada. by ADM

Critical points in the development of wet food
Formulation
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4+ MIN

Critical points in the development of wet food

By Ludmila Barbi T. Bomcompagni

According to Euromonitor, in 2021, the volume of wet pet food sold in Brazil was approximately 72,000 tons, with a turnover close to 2 billion brazilian reais. This results in a growth of 18% for wet food for cats, and 5% for dogs in the year 2021, compared to 2020. Moist foods, those with humidity greater than 60% according to FEDIAF (2021), are the ones that most resemble fresh foods, which in turn refer guardians to the feeling of providing health and wellbeing to their pets through the food. The development of wet food differs from dry extruded on several points, one being processed. Among many process options, we have extrusion, moist or dry heat cooking, autoclave sterilization, and freezing, among other technologies that guarantee the quality and safety of the final product. But, in addition to the production process, we point out other factors that we consider important in the development of this category of food. Formulation Initially, the formulation of wet foods differs in the choice of ingredients. We can use cereals, flours, and bran in the formula, but there is the possibility of using inputs with a lot of moisture, such as fresh meats and organ meats, vegetables, and fruits, in addition to other sources of nutrients that are limited in the composition of dry foods. As the natural moisture of the ingredients is still present in the final product, its energy density is lower since the nutrients are more diluted. Therefore, in moist and semi-moist food, even if they are complete, the metabolizable energy tends to be up to 4 times lower than in dry extruded food. The metabolizable energy (ME) of cat and pet food is the most accurate measure to express its energy density. The way to calculate the ME of food can be through live digestibility or through prediction equations. Recent studies (Calvez J et al. 2012a, Calvez J et al. 2012b) that compare the precision between the modified Atwater method versus the equations cited by the National Research Council (NRC, 2006) to estimate ME have shown that both provide an equally moderate precision of estimation of the ME, for wet food for dogs and cats. Therefore, formulating the complete wet feed using the FEDIAF (2021) recommended nutrient profile table, based on caloric content rather than dry matter, is the best option to ensure that the requirements of each essential nutrient will be consumed (every 1000 ME kcal of food intake). Palatability The nutritional composition and functional benefit claims attributed that pet food is a strong influence on the owner's purchase decision. However, it is useless to offer pets a correctly balanced food with functional ingredients if it does not consume it. To ensure the correct consumption of industrialized food, whether dry, semi-moist, or moist, it must be tasty and stimulate the pet's appetite through factors known by the pet food industry as "palatability drivers". For this reason, having scientific proof of dogs' and cats' food preferences is essential to develop a palatability agent and test its performance in the product intended. Wet food, by itself, is already recognized by guardians as more palatable or attractive to pets than dry foods. However, the basic composition of the product, the type of processing, the palatability, and the type of packaging, in addition to the pet's eating habits and familiarity with this category, still have an influence. Palatabilizers can be found in liquid or powder form and are produced through the process of enzymatic hydrolysis of animal products and their main function is to attract the dog or cat through the release of aromatic molecules when food is offered. After being applied to the food, palatability measurements must be carried out in specialized panels to verify the increase in performance provided by the additive. The factors that drive palatability in wet food still need to be further explored, but it is already known that the use of plants in the formulation has the ability to increase its appeal compared to the same version without them. Water activity (AW) The control of water activity in dry or wet-processed foods is essential to ensure their quality. The water must not remain entirely in the form of free water since it acts as a means of dispersing nutrients for the development of microorganisms and chemical-enzymatic reactions. To prevent the activity of fungi, yeasts, and bacteria in dry extruded food combined methods are often used, such as drying or dehydration, so that the wáter activity reaches between 0.6 and 0.62. In the case of moist food, high water activity is normal, which if not adjusted will approach 1, reducing its shelf life. To reduce these, we can add solutes, pH control, and conservation methods. However, there is still the possibility of increasing the occurrence of enzymatic and non-enzymatic browning reactions, including fat rancidity, which makes difficult its process (and antioxidants and acids are used to lower the pH). Even so, free water is necessary so that the sensory qualities (softness, chewiness, palatability, among others) are the best possible. In general, in moist and semi-moist products for dogs and cats, we reduce aw with the use of technological additives such as thickeners, stabilizers, and emulsifiers: gums, glycerin, lecithin, propylene glycol, carboxymethylcellulose and even ingredients that also help reduce it, such as starches, sugars and sources of soluble fiber. By: Eliane Gil Gatto, Ludmila Barbi and Erika Stasieniuk

What You Need to Know About Raw Dog Food Diets
Animal Origin
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4+ MIN

What You Need to Know About Raw Dog Food Diets

What Is a Raw Dog Food Diet? Raw dog food diets have been around for quite some time despite being controversial. In recent years, they've been increasing in popularity. Raw diets usually contain ingredients like raw meat, uncooked eggs, and bones (both whole and ground). Some of the perceived benefits of a raw dog food diet include: Better stool quality Improved skin and coat health Cleaner teeth Better digestive health Weight management However, there has also been a lack of scientific evidence to back up these claims while there are many documented concerns about the risks related to raw meat diets. Some of the risks associated with raw dog foods include: Broken teeth Digestive upset Intestinal damage due to sharp bone fragments Nutrient deficiencies Pathogenic bacteria contamination
Most veterinary and public health associations (AAHA, AVMA, CDC, FDA, CVMA, FEDIAF) advise against raw foods for dogs. Because of food safety concerns, the risks of feeding a raw food diet not only affects pets but we humans as well. Concerns of Feeding A Raw Food Diet Two main concerns when feeding any food to pets are: Is it safe and free of harmful pathogens that can make your pet (or you) sick? Does the diet provide all the nutrition your pet requires? Things like cooking, high-pressure pasteurization, commercially-available food with a nutritional adequacy statement, and consulting with a qualified nutritionist are all things to think about when choosing to feed a raw food diet to your dog. Raw meats have a high risk for contamination with pathogenic microorganisms, such as salmonella and E. coli. Just like humans, there's a risk of pets getting food poisoning from raw meat. There's also the challenge of making sure that raw meat is handled carefully to prevent cross-contamination, which can result in the people in your household getting sick. If feeding a homemade food diet to your pet is important, consider cooking it to eliminate pathogens. There isn't any evidence that food must be raw to get the perceived benefits mentioned above. However, cooking will provide peace-of-mind that the food is not only safe for your furry friend but yourself and your family too. Consider High-Pressure Pasteurization If you would prefer not to cook your pet's food, another option to consider is buying a commercial raw diet that has been treated using high-pressure pasteurization (HPP). HPP destroys pathogens while having little impact on the benefits of the food. It uses pressure rather than heat to kill harmful bacteria. This way, the food remains raw while increasing its safety. Before buying a commercial raw diet, contact the manufacturer to determine if they use HPP and what other food safety systems they have in place to provide high-quality food. Nutritional Requirements for Dogs When considering a raw or homemade diet for your dog, it's important to know what we refer to as 'nutritional adequacy'. A nutritionally adequate diet contains all the nutrients your pet requires in the correct quantities. Often, when nutrient levels are tested in homemade diets, they are found not to meet nutrient requirements. Therefore, we recommend getting in touch with a qualified nutritionist to review your diet plan to make sure it is nutritionally balanced! If choosing to feed a commercial diet, either raw or cooked, it's important to choose a suitable food for the species (dog or cat) and life stage2 of your four-legged friend. You can also call the company and find out who made the food and their qualifications. These two steps will give you a peace-of-mind that the food you're serving will meet your pup's nutritional requirements. Other Nutritional Considerations Another factor to consider is the nutrient content of the ingredients included in a raw diet. Certain nutrients need special attention because of the limited number of foods that contain them. For example, vitamin D is only found in certain foods, such as fatty fish, beef liver, and egg yolks. Other nutrients, such as calcium and phosphorus, have a smaller range between the minimal and maximum requirements. These need to be taken in the correct amount to prevent disease, especially for bone health in young, growing pets. Because of this, pet food companies test their ingredients and products to ensure the food contains the right amount of each essential nutrient. However, for individual pet parents, testing can be expensive and usually isn't feasible. Complete and balanced dry and wet pet foods made by a company that sets high food safety and quality standards (including testing for pathogenic bacteria) and has qualified nutritionists on staff takes the guesswork out of feeding your beloved pet. By Now Fresh
 

France's Ynsect expands in U.S. pet food market with Jord buy
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

France's Ynsect expands in U.S. pet food market with Jord buy

Ynsect breeds mealworms that produce proteins for aquaculture, livestock, pet food and fertilisers. The company made its first entry into the U.S. market in late 2021 through a supply deal to Pure Simple to make premium food for dogs. The acquisition of Jord Producers, based in Nebraska, will allow it to enter the fast-growing backyard chicken feed sector, it said. The number of Americans having chickens in their backyards has doubled since 2018. By 2026, the U.S. market is predicted to reach approximately $400 million, according to a recent study by consultancy Arthur D. Little, cited by Ynsect. Pet food makers are increasingly using insects such as flies and mealworms as a sustainable source of protein, capitalising on rising pet ownership and booming demand from environmentally conscious consumers. read more Farmed bugs require far less land, water and feed than livestock and they emit less greenhouse gasses. French rival InnovaFeed signed a deal with U.S. grains merchant Archer-Daniels-Midland (ADM.N) last month to supply insect protein to its pet food division. Last year Ynsect agreed to take over Dutch firm Protifarm, a leader in insect ingredients for human food, marking a move into the food market amid rising demand for healthy, eco-friendly eating. The company, which raised around $450 million from global investors, is building what it says will be the world's largest vertical farm, which uses stacked layers, in Amiens, northern France, set to open in the last quarter of 2022. It confirmed a target to reach revenue of at least 500 million euros ($549 million) by 2026 and said it aimed to have 15 factories worldwide by 2030. By Reuters  

Natural Pet Food
Formulation
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4+ MIN

Natural Pet Food

The pet food industry instilled the idea that only dry extruded pet food had all the nutrients and the rest of pet food sources were not correct. Research has come a long way, and today industries can already produce foods with a high inclusion of protein sources and nutrients. Research has gone further, and even medicated foods have been manufactured with the aim of  alleviate bone wear, heart problems, obesity and urinary problems in our beloved pets. It turns out that, in recent years, it has been proven that all this is not exactly true. There are foods that dogs and cats can´t really eat due to the toxicological conditions that these type of pet foods can cause to them.  But in general, it´s possible to balance a diet for dogs and cats using the same foods we eat and even giving a touch of refinement to the formulas. In some of them you can use mushrooms, pumpkins, seeds such as flaxseed and yeast for better digestion. Oils with excellent sources of fatty acids are also used, which help fight diseases and regenerate cells in the body, preventing heart disease, among others. The most used are coconut oil, linseed oil, extra virgin olive oil, as well as the  tastiest and cheapest... lard. Other ingredients can also be used, such as whole grains, meats, vegetables and legumes, turning the animal's food into an explosion of flavours, nutrients and, of course, providing satiety. The process of this mixture of ingredients is done as we do it at home. Ingredients are properly mixed and packed, the packages are placed inside an autoclave (equipment that resembles a pressure cooker), which will cook the ingredients for a certain period of time. The cooking time will depend on the formulation and the temperature varies between 100 and 110ºC. The distribution of these products has been a challenge for the companies committed to this new market niche, since it´s a food with high percentage of moisture. Logistics are required, in addition to packaging that ensures the product has a shelf life and expiration date as long as that of its main dry pet food competitors. Another point to take into account are the oxidative sources, light and oxygen, which can reach these foods and reduce shelf life.Some companies make the presentation of these products in vacuum transparent plastic containers, but later, they are placed in a cardboard container, to protect them from light. Companies offering canned products have less risk; however, the investment is greater in this type of packaging. Canned goods are assured the product will have the validity shown on the label, unless the packaging suffers any damage.This market niche is going down an uncertain path, because in less than 2 years there has been an explosion of brands that offer products with different formulations.
They are products with good prices in the market, but since the market is so competitive, few companies will remain on top. The rest of the companies will compete to guarantee their products on the shelves The best way to work with this product is to enter a market niche that encourages people to feed their pets a natural diet, free of GMOs and colorants. Examples of this are pet parents who are concerned about the health of those pets that suffer from food allergy problems or need to lose weight, vegan parents who want to incorporate their pets into eating habits or a different lifestyle such as a vegetarian diet. In these cases, products such as milk, eggs, meat meal or even pieces of meat will be excluded from the diet, which will be replaced by vegetable ingredients, enriched with omega 3 and 6 vegetables, supplemented with essential vitamins and amino acids such as Vitamin A, L-Carnitine and L-Taurine in the case of cats.     The market is very encouraging for the development of new products, technologies and flavours. We need to take advantage of the technologies that are within our reach, to make life easier for parents and thus prolong the life of their pets. Today it´s possible to offer a healthy and nutrient-rich diet to our pets, either in the form of dry or natural food. The important thing is to be updated on the news and opportunities offered by the market. The lesson we take from all this is that our parents, grandparents or even ourselves, in the past we did well to share our food with our pets. It´s likely we didn´t give them a balanced diet, but we weren´t contributing to their illness, since there was almost always meat, cereals and sometimes some vegetables within the food we offered to them. by Rafael Resende Silva - R2S Consultoria
www.portalr2s.com.br   Source: All Pet Food
 

Soft Kibbles in Pet Food:  A step forward in the trend towards humanization
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Soft Kibbles in Pet Food: A step forward in the trend towards humanization

Many pets prefer wet food over dry food because they have textures similar to meat and are easy to eat or chew. On the other hand, they can be more complicated to offer, they are usually less available in the market and are almost always more expensive. Some owners may not like them because they generate some mess during the intake. Soft kibbles combine the benefits of wet foods with the ease, availability and practicality of dry foods. Soft or semi-moist kibbles refer to dry kibbles with a soft, elastic texture and a higher percentage of moisture compared to traditional dry pet foods. They´re an intermediate between dry and wet pet food or sauce. In the market you can find pet foods with only soft kibbles or in combination with dry foods. Every day there are more and more manufacturers that incorporate this type of innovation in their formulas, since many pets prefer them and we can produce them on the same production line as dry pet food.  For the manufacturing of soft kibbles, it´s necessary to incorporate additives that provide plasticity, moisturizing properties, emulsifying, texturizing and palatant agents. The elaboration process includes variables whose purpose is to achieve high gelatinization and expansion of starches, moisture retention (15-17%) and care for the integrity of the kibble itsef. The success lies in great extend on the managment to keep the soft kibbles stable over time, even if they are mixed with dry food. The final product achieves higher moisture at a low Aw (0.65) thanks to the inclusion of moisturizing ingredients. These help keep this value low, helping to keep pet food free of microbial growth and with a long shelf life. By achieving a stable increase of moisture within the Kibbles, it´s possible to recover row material, which will be reflected in economic terms at the end of the day. Palatability and acceptability are markedly increased in dry pet foods that include a percentage of soft kibbles. As we can see in Table 1, the intake ratio is consistently higher in a food with 15% soft kibbles, compared to a food without inclusion. Both textures, soft and crispy, and meat flavors are synergistically combined, generating greater attraction to the food. For this test, the kibbles  were produced using the formula proposed by Callizo Aromas and incorporating the Zoasoft additive.     The production of soft kibbles also requires paying special attention to the selection of the ingredients included in the formula, and to the conditioning and extrusion process. These are going to be key to the successfull production of  this type of pet  food. Drying, mixing and packaging are variables that must also be managed to ensure the product keeps its properties. With the inclusion of soft kibbles in the mix, it´s possible to overcome a barrier towards humanization, which constitutes a very important innovative marketing tool. Undoubtedly it has become in an instrument of marketing, differentiation, relaunch and positioning of the brand. Written by Callizo Aromas Source: All Pet Food 

The nutritional needs of pets during summer
Animal Origin
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4+ MIN

The nutritional needs of pets during summer

So, what nutritional needs do pets have during the warm or even hot months? Do we have to change their diet on hot days? And what is most important to keep in mind not only during hot temperatures but also all year long? Your pet's appetite may change during the summer Even though there may not be many studies on how seasons affect cats' and dogs' appetites, there are a few that confirm appetite might decrease during the summer. Just like we want a specific type of food during cold months and another in the summer, the same can happen to pets. According to this study made on 38 cats, it seems that our furry family members eat the most between October and February. And they eat about 15% less food from June to August. Now, dogs that are more into the outdoors or involved in high-intensity sports need more calories to help them generate heat during the winter months. To be more accurate, they need around 7.5% more calories for every 10-degree drop in the temperature. And the opposite applies in the warmer season, which means they tend to need about 7.5 percent fewer calories every time the temperature increases by 10 degrees. Do I need to change my pet's diet? If your pet is on the right diet, then there's no need to change it during the summer months. In general, you should keep your pet's diet constant all year long. Of course, if your dog or cat has a special health condition, such as allergies, obesity or arthritis, then you need to make some dietary changes, even though is summer.  If that's the case, then don't change their food all of a sudden, instead add the new pet food gradually. Sudden changes can lead to other health issues, such as vomiting and diarrhea. So, there is no need to change your pet's diet completely in the summer, as long as the current one is a balanced diet that gives them all the nutrients they need all year long. It's important to choose the right diet for your pet You should always pay attention to your pet's diet, whether summer or winter. As the studies showed, daylight and temperature have been found to have an effect on your pets' metabolism and the amount of food they need to stay well. But what is the right diet? Well, the right diet is a balanced one that includes all the nutrients and also satisfies their water needs. For that reason, you should opt for a high-quality healthy pet food that has specifically been made with your pet's nutritional needs in mind. And among those essential nutrients are omega-3s. As dogs (and cats) can't produce these essential fatty acids in their bodies, they need an effective diet that gives them a daily dose of omega-3s all year round. Here are some of the health benefits of omega-3s and choline for pets backed by science: That's only possible if you choose pet food that offers a balanced diet of omega-3s and omega-6s. During summer (or any season), you can also give your dog delicious treats with omega-3 fatty acids.  Water is essential Water is vital no matter the season. But especially during those hot days, pets need to have plenty of fresh water available all the time. So, make sure to carry water with you during walks in the nature, for example. Or if you're at home, make sure that your pet drinks enough water.  If their body doesn't get enough water, there can be unpleasant consequences. In some cases, dehydration can even lead to overheat (hyperthermia) and low blood pressure.  All in all, water is essential to every pet's diet and just a small water loss can be critical to your pet's health. Krill - a super premium omega-3 source for pets Krill, this small crustacean that comes from the clean Southern Ocean of Antarctica, it's also a superior source of marine omega-3s EPA and DHA with a distinct advantage. The omega-3s found in krill are bound to phospholipids and this makes them more effectively incorporated into cell membranes. ​​And this is what makes it extra special as the way these fatty acids are incorporated is essential to obtain the necessary health effects. Recent studies have also shown that the phospholipid-bound omega-3s from krill are more effective in raising omega-3 levels in a dog's body compared to triglyceride-bound omega-3s, like those found in fish oil. Written by QRILL Pet Team

How to give your cat Wet and Dry Pet Food: The perfect combination is Mixed Feeding
Formulation
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3+ MIN

How to give your cat Wet and Dry Pet Food: The perfect combination is Mixed Feeding

Our cats walk, sleep peacefully, play on the carpet or do any other cuteness that gets thousands of likes on Instagram. Raise your hand whoever hasn't stopped for a while to look at cat reels and time has run out. They are so enigmatic, elegant, special, interested, sensitives and funny... and they have been living with us for approximately 10 thousand years. In Spain, almost 4 million domestic cats were registered in 2020, according to the European pet food industry, a figure somewhat lower than that the one of dogs, but higher than the previous year. And yet, many times we still have doubts about how to feed them so they don't get too fat or get sick, and also to make them happy. Is it better to give them only dry pet food? Only wet pet food? Both? It is a frequent question among cat parents. The answer is easy: both. This is what is called 'mixed feeding', a method that consists of combining dry and wet pet food in your cat's daily diet to obtain the maximum benefits of both formats for the well-being of your cat. Both dry and wet pet food are suitable for your cat if you choose them correctly and adapt them to their daily needs Dry food has multiple benefits, such as helping to keep teeth cleaner; convenience when dosing and keeping it; the fact that it keeps better if we leave it in the bowl all day (something useful for the cat who eats just a  little during the whole day, as it would in nature), and that´s  somewhat cheaper than wet food. Wet pet food is attractive to felines, which are generally very demanding with food, and it is emerging as a great option to stimulate their appetite. It´s fragrant, its texture is juicy, its flavors are delicious and varied... Cats prefer it since kittens choose food for its smell and texture and not so much for its taste.     The great benefits of wet pet food are two. On one hand, it provides a lot of water, essential for a species that -due to its desert origin- tends to drink little and concentrate its urine for a long time. 'Cats are prone to urinary tract problems and wet pet food can help them prevent this type of pathology,' explains Beatriz Martínez, a veterinary expert in nutrition at Hospital Veteralia Movet. On the other hand, it is a great supplement that provides essential nutrients to our cat, especially if he is a kitty with little appetite (a classic), a senior (the soft texture will help him chew more easily) or a cat with some type of illness. And it is that the variety is the taste: by having a wide range of alternatives and textures, it´s easier to find your preferences. Truths and Myths of wet pet Food Wet cat food is more unknown than dry. There are many myths surrounding this format of feeding for kittens, which usually comes rationed in individual bags or cans with pieces of meat or minced meat in sauce, creamy pâté, fish fillets, mousse, puree, jelly or broth. For example, there is a tendency to think that wet food will make the pussycat fat, when the reality is that, due to its humidity, it is less caloric than dry food. The key to keeping your cat from gaining weight is, above all, to respect the portions and the calories that the cat needs. When choosing a wet diet for our cat, we must pay attention that it meets its nutritional needs and is adapted to its age and condition (whether it is sterilized or not, if it suffers from any disease...). It will be your veterinarian who can best detail what amount is recommended based on his age, energy and state of health. 'The ideal is to combine both diets, the dry one for better conservation and comfort and the wet one to continue stimulating its appetite with tasty textures, in addition to compensating for that possible lack of hydration, and also in special cases of disease or age of the feline' , states the veterinarian. by La Vanguardia

What are phospholipids and why are they important for your pets?
Formulation
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3+ MIN

What are phospholipids and why are they important for your pets?

And there's more to phospholipids than being an integral part of cells, they are responsible for carrying long-chain omega-3s EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) into your pets cell membranes.  Now, these essential fatty acids in the form of EPA and DHA are more effectively incorporated into cell membranes when bound to phospholipids which is crucial to obtaining the health effects of omega-3s. Once in place in the cell membranes, the omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA can support the health of many vital organs, including the heart, kidney, liver, joints, brain, eyes, skin, and coat. The importance of phospholipid omega-3s Dogs and cats can't produce these essential fatty acids by themselves, that's why they need a specific diet to get enough of these essential nutrients and live a long and healthy life. Antarctic krill is a superior source of marine omega-3s because its essential fatty acids EPA and DHA are bound to phospholipids. This means that pets can take full advantage of the health benefits associated with these essential omega-3 fatty acids. Marine omega-3s can improve the skin and coat of your pets, can reduce cardiovascular risk or ensures normal brain and vision development, among many other important health effects. Phospholipids vs triglycerides There are also other marine sources of omega-3s, like fish oil, where these fatty acids are delivered in triglyceride form. Now, this type of omega-3 has been a long-term ingredient in pet food. When pets have a diet based on triglyceride omega-3s (or fish oil), their body has to first convert these essential fatty acids into phospholipids before they can be incorporated into cell membranes. It has been shown that triglyceride omega-3s are also more likely to be used as energy or stored as fat. All this means that a smaller amount of this type of omega-3s will actually reach the cell membranes and have an effect on the health of your pet.  As phospholipid omega-3s are less available as energy, they are more efficiently incorporated into cell membranes where they can make a difference in your pet's life. What are the studies saying There are multiple studies showing the benefits of a diet based on phospholipid omega-3s for dogs and cats. The difference between phospholipids and triglycerides has been investigated in a 6-week study done by Aker BioMarine. The study was done on 20 Alaskan Huskies, 10 of them receiving a daily diet based on EPA and DHA from krill meal, while the other ten received EPA and DHA from fish oil. At the end of the study, there has been a 62% increase in the Omega-3 Index in the krill meal group, with the triglyceride fish oil group having only a 21% increase. This study shows that phospholipid omega-3s from krill are more effective in raising omega-3 levels in a dog's body compared to triglyceride omega-3s from fish oil.  QRILL Pet is a unique marine ingredient for pets QRILL Pet is one of the super-premium krill ingredients you can find out there. Made only from whole Antarctic krill, QRILL Pet is a functional marine ingredient that is added to pet food, treats and supplements. In addition to phospholipid omega-3s, QRILL Pet is naturally rich in the essential nutrient choline, the antioxidant astaxanthin and highly palatable marine proteins.  by Aysen Korucu - Marketing Manager - Qrill Pet

Pet Food gets a Human Makeover.
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Pet Food gets a Human Makeover.

Pets are playing an increasingly large role in our lives – Nielsen data shows that the number of consumers who consider their pet a family member increased by 7% between 2007-2016, and 42% of UK pet food buyers consider their pet a 'foodie' [often defined as a gourmet; a person with a refined taste and particular interest in food] (Mintel, 2020). According to the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA), 'Trends in companion animal nutrition often mirror trends in human nutrition, reflecting the desire for of pet owners to feed diets they consider healthy and beneficial for the well-being of their pets.' Little wonder, then, that as people become more aware of their personal health and nutrition, pet-food companies are successfully appealing to them with attributes that they can understand and personally relate to, including: Sustainability: Sustainability is becoming a key concern for Western consumers, and a well-thought-out sustainability strategy is a basic 'must-do' for every company in every corner of the food and beverage industry – now also including pet food. Words such as 'sustainably sourced' and 'grass-fed' are increasingly seen on pet-food packaging. Pet-food manufacturers have a unique opportunity to valorise by-products from human food manufacture that would otherwise be thrown away. Provenance: There is rising demand for products made by local and smaller producers, with such products often considered more sustainable, safe, genuine and authentic. In human food and beverage, 75% of consumers consider country of origin to be as important – and sometimes even more important – than other purchase criteria such as quality or price (Nielsen). It's no different in the pet-food world, where products that carry claims such as 'locally raised' and 'proudly made in…' abound.  Clean label and natural: Promoting pet-food products as 'all natural' or 'organic' is becoming increasingly popular – a reflection of what is happening in human nutrition, where consumers increasingly prefer natural foods made in a kitchen to over-processed products with long ingredient lists. Plant-based: This is perhaps one of the more unexpected trends to have spread into pet nutrition (mainly dog nutrition), with dogs generally being considered strict carnivores. But 34% of UK dog food buyers believe it is good for pets to regularly have a plant-based meal instead of a meat-based one (Mintel). This belief is supported by vets and scientists, although always with the warning that pet owners must ensure their dog's diet is balanced and nutritionally adequate. Digestive wellness: With many pets having sensitive digestive systems, the desire to care for this is a key priority for many owners. According to Mintel, 76% of cat and dog food buyers believe that actively looking after pets' digestive health is essential for their overall health and 44% buyers said they would have positive beliefs about pet-food products claiming to contain 'good bacteria'.  Personalisation: The past few years have seen a fragmentation of consumers' beliefs about what 'healthy nutrition' entails, with people making up their own minds about what is good for them and why. Personalised nutrition has grown in popularity and started to spill over into the pet nutrition market. Research has shown that nearly half (45%) of pet-food buyers would be willing to pay to have their pet's DNA tested to identify the healthiest diet for their animal friend. Some pet-food manufacturers now offer personalised meal kits, with some brands even offering to base this personalised diet on the animal's blood work. The spread of human nutrition trends into the world of pet food is likely to continue. Pet food manufacturers need to monitor the situation and adapt accordingly. As consumers are becoming more aware of their own personal health, there is a significant opportunity for the pet food industry to capitalise on that by offering products and concepts that humans can relate to, believe in, and consider 'healthy' or 'good' enough to feed their pet. by  Julian Mellentin, New Nutrition Business
 

BENEO invests in pulse-processing plant.
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

BENEO invests in pulse-processing plant.

BENEO, one of the leading manufacturers of functional ingredients, has announced a €50 million investment in a new pulse processing site in Offstein, Germany. The site will produce protein rich pulse ingredients for food and animal feed. It will focus initially on protein concentrate, starch rich flour and hulls from Faba bean, with the option to process other pulses in the future. The new production site further strengthens the company's plant-based protein portfolio and enables BENEO to meet growing demand for plant-based food and feed ingredients. The plant-based protein trend is here to stay. It is predicted that by 2027, 75% of all protein demand will be vegetal(i), while products using these proteins are expected to reach 11% CAGR between 2020-2027(ii). There is also growing popularity for pulses, with pea and Faba bean considered the rising star ingredients of new product launches worldwide, having achieved a CAGR of 20% between 2016-21(iii). Throughout BENEO's entire supply chain sustainability is top of mind. Pulses help to reduce green house gas emissions at farm level. For example, Faba beans provide nitrogen for themselves and subsequent plants and therefore nitrogen fertilisation is not necessary. The Faba beans will be locally sourced from farmers that are certified by the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative (SAI) and thus follow sustainability standards. As BENEO is manufacturing Faba bean protein, starch rich flour and hulls, the crop will be fully used and completely valorised for functional ingredients. Furthermore, the production process has been chosen for its low energy consumption in comparison to alternative processes; overall contributing to BENEO's carbon neutrality and sustainability targets. Work has already begun on constructing the plant and is expected to be completed within the second half of 2024, creating up to 25 jobs at the Offstein site. However, to ensure that food and feed customers can benefit as soon as possible from Faba bean ingredients, BENEO will process the raw ingredients in intermediate production facilities, until the new plant is fully operational. This means that first quantities of BENEO's Faba bean ingredients will be available from the start of June 2022 onwards. BENEO's Faba bean protein concentrate and starch rich flour will be used for protein enrichment and texture improvement in meat and dairy alternatives, as well as (gluten-free) bakery and cereals. Faba bean hulls and starch rich flour will be used in feed as a vegetal protein or fibre source for sustainable petfood, aquafeed and livestock nutrition. Christoph Boettger, Member of the Executive Board at BENEO: 'The recent investment by BENEO into a new pulse production site is only the starting point. We strongly believe in plantbased ingredients and therefore see the new plant as an important first step in enlarging our protein offering moving forwards. This will enable us to produce a wider variety of sustainable plant-based protein ingredients over the coming years.' by Beneo

Reformulation of Petfood diets with AMN Pea Concentrates
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

Reformulation of Petfood diets with AMN Pea Concentrates

The quality of ingredients and type of protein used in pet foods are very important factors for pet owners when considering selecting a diet. Protein is an essential nutrient which one requires great attention in terms of quality, quantity and indeed, sustainability. Sustainability has remarkably emerged in the consumer awareness. 'The food that is good for our Pets, it should also be good for the planet'. Pea concentrates represent excellent alternative ingredients in reformulation. Pea concentrates are clean label and sustainable sources of protein, starch and dietary fiber, as well as essential minerals and vitamins. Why choosing Pea Concentrates? – Sustainability matters Pet owners are concerned about the welfare of their pets but also about the environment by placing emphasis on traits like kindness and compassion. Pets have an important role in society, and this fact has been even more noticeable after the COVID pandemic. There is indeed an important driving demand for ingredients in pet food, which places social and corporate responsibility at the forefront of our strategy.
 
Our pea ingredients are excellent ingredients which fits nowadays` and future trends to support claims on health, clean label, functional and sustainable pet food.  At the same time, the combined use of cereals and pea concentrate matches the amino acid profile in Petfood formulation. This is mainly due to peas are high in amino acid lysine and arginine while are low in sulfur containing amino acids, such as cysteine and methionine; while cereals such as rice, corn and wheat have higher content of sulfur containing amino acids and having a lower lysine content. Please, contact us for information on reformulation of Petfood diets at https://www.am-nutrition.no/pet-food/  by Laura Gil Martens, Chief Nutritionist, R&D Manager AM Nutrition

Realizing sustainable pet food using bread meal through co-creation
Cereals
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5+ MIN

Realizing sustainable pet food using bread meal through co-creation

A successful example is Bubeck Petfood that created a highly nutritional, digestible and palatable dog biscuit using sustainable bread meal, developed by FeedValid and provided by IQI Trusted Petfood Ingredients. FeedValid from the Netherlands is the market leader in western-Europe for valorizing raw materials and process side streams from the human food industry into high-quality, innovative ingredients for IQI the compound feed, pet food and aquaculture industries. IQI Trusted Petfood Ingredients and FeedValid have a longstanding partnership, going back well over 25 years, for the supply of sustainable high-quality pet food ingredients, including dried potato and flakes. IQI has been a key provider of these and other ingredients to Bubeck Petfood in Germany since 2005. This was the perfect foundation for co-creating a new sustainable dog biscuit. Bread meal as a sustainable ingredient Alexander Romme, chief material management officer at FeedValid, says: 'Working within a relationship based on trust and openness, FeedValid and IQI regularly explore the possibilities of our new sustainable product developments for application in pet food. IQI has a lot of expertise, knowledge and feeling for the trends and developments in the pet food market, such as the increasing interest in sustainability. Since we process high volumes of bread products from side streams of the bread production and processing industry, we looked into implementing bread meal as a high-quality pet food ingredient.' FeedValid selects specific high-quality mono-streams of bread products to valorize into high-quality ingredients. Their fully automated equipment is integrated into the production line, creating a closed circuit for automatically separating mono-streams of bread products from the production process. FeedValid collects their fully enclosed containers on a daily basis for further processing of the bread products through drying and granulation into bread meal with a consistent high quality and structure – essential for application in pet food. Bread meal can be applied as an alternative to conventional starch sources to reduce the average carbon foot print of pet food. It has a high degree of gelatinization and high water binding capacity, which makes it highly suitable for application in snacks and treats, cold pelleted pet foods, and as an addition to fresh meat slurries to the extruder. For use in cold pelleted pet food, bread meal actually has a positive effect on energy use in a pellet press with equal pellet quality. Since bread meal originates from bread products, made of flour from the inside of the wheat grain, there is a reduced risk of mycotoxin compared to using fresh raw wheat, making it a very safe ingredient. IQI Trusted Petfood Ingredients has exclusive rights to sell the bread meal to global pet food manufacturers. When IQI's sales manager Yvette Gerritsen suggested bread meal as a sustainable dog food ingredient to Kai Nagel, managing director at Bubeck Petfood, she immediately struck a chord. Creating healthy and palatable dog food Founded in 1893 by Robert Bubeck and his son Wilhelm, Bubeck Petfood specializes in dog snacks and treats. Kai Nagel, 3rd generation of the Nagel family that has owned Bubeck since 1982, says: 'Bread meal is so interesting to me because the use of left-over bread goes back to the beginning of the dog food industry. In the 1890s, dogs generally ate leftovers from the table, but dog breeders and big companies with security dogs needed a more consistent type of dog food. Bubeck created the very first dog biscuit from leftover bread that was dried, pressed into shape with a little bit of meat in the middle, and then baked. Thereby creating a sustainable type of dog food with good digestibility, consistency, and a long shelf life.' Although in the past decades the majority of pet food producers switched to extruding dog food, Bubeck has remained true to the baking process. Kai Nagel: 'While this is a bit more cost and labor intensive, baking greatly improves the nutritional properties of wheat by increasing the digestibility of starches and proteins, creating a very good and healthy energy source for the dog. The grain-free trend that started 10 years ago suggests that wheat would somehow be bad for dogs, but problems like allergic reactions are only caused by products that have not been properly processed. Using a pre-cooked and pregelatinized product, such as bread meal, and baking it again, improves the digestibility and palatability even further. Dogs like the sugary sweet smell of baked dogfood, so there is no need to add artificial substances.' Exploring new possibilities Kai Nagel: 'We have a very good and longstanding relationship with IQI, and trust them for the reliable supply of high-quality ingredients, which enables us to explore new ideas together. IQI regularly provides us with product samples to test and create new products. If this is successful, we make dog food samples to give to our customers to see what they think.' This kind of co-creation resulted, for example, in Bubeck becoming the first pet food manufacturer using IQI's Miscanthus fiber, also known as Elephant grass, as a sustainable source of dietary fiber. As key provider to Bubeck, IQI Trusted Petfood Ingredients organized with FeedValid to provde a sample of bread meal to Bubeck for testing purposes. The first tests were very positive, but the sample was too coarse for the sieves of Bubeck's production facility, so FeedValid in response change the grind size to create a finer product. After a little technical finetuning, this second sample was successfully processed by Bubeck. Apart from the grind size, using bread meal or fresh raw wheat makes no difference for processing. In response, Bubeck has signed a contract with IQI for the supply of bread meal. Sustainability is the future As the first product created with bread meal, in 2022 Bubeck will introduce a big baked dog biscuit. After this more products based on bread meal will follow. Kai Nagel: 'Our aim at Bubeck is to create more healthy dog food with excellent digestibility and palatability in a more sustainable way. It is in our DNA to re-use food from human consumption and prevent waste. This has been the natural way for thousands of years with dogs eating our high-quality leftovers. By using bread meal we don't compete with the vulnerable resources for human food production.' Alexander Romme: 'I expect the demand for sustainable ingredients to accelerate in the coming years, as the pressure increases to realize the Paris Agreement. As a result, there will be a shift to using other kinds of more sustainable ingredients across different industries, including pet food. The pet food industry is moving towards more and more use of sustainable, plant-based and non-GMO ingredients. Streams of valorized high-quality ingredients, such as bread meal, will help to realize the climate ambitions.' Kai Nagel: 'As Bubeck we have now come full circle by re-introducing a type of sustainable production that came natural to our company's founders. When Robert Bubeck and his son Wilhelm started out almost 130 years ago, not wasting food was an economic necessity, now it's essential to save our planet.' Product characteristics       By IQI Trusted Petfood Ingredients.

Can dogs be healthy on a vegan diet?
Vegetable Origin
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3+ MIN

Can dogs be healthy on a vegan diet?

As more humans turn to vegan alternatives, more vegan options are popping up on pet food shelves as well, and you may be wondering whether they provide complete and sufficient nutrition for your pup. Are they healthy? Do they provide all the nutrients needed? Aren't dogs carnivores? Let's take a look at what the science says.   Dogs are not carnivores  Yes, the dogs who are now our loving pets may have ancestry from wolves running wild and hunting for prey. But, a lot has changed throughout the process of taming these wolves and breeding them into the loyal, domesticated dogs we know today. Dogs being carnivores is still a common misconception, but research has shown it is not the case. A 2013 study published in the journal Nature showed that dogs have co-evolved with humans and adapted to a starch-rich diet, proving that dogs are, in fact, omnivores, and their intestines are now well-equipped to handle grains and starches. In addition, according to a study by Dr. Andrew Knight, Professor of Animal Welfare and Ethics and Director of the Centre for Animal Welfare at the University of Winchester, plant-based meals are just as palatable and appetizing to dogs as traditional meat-based meals. In the study, 2,308 dogs were observed by their caregivers, who watched for ten behavioral indicators of palatability at meal times. The study states, 'There was no consistent evidence of a difference between vegan diets and either the conventional or raw meat diets.' Okay, so dogs can and will eat plant-based meals. But what about their health? Is it actually good for them, or will it cause them to be deficient in nutrients, weak, or sick? Can dogs be healthy on a vegan diet? In 2019, Wendy Brown and her colleagues studied the health of 12 sprint-racing Siberian Huskies. In the study, six dogs were fed traditional meat-based dog food for active dogs, and six were fed a vegan alternative formulated to the same nutrient specifications. The experiment lasted 16 weeks, including ten weeks of competitive racing, and blood tests and veterinary health checks were conducted several times during its course. The consulting veterinarian assessed all dogs to be in excellent physical condition throughout the study. No dogs developed anemia or any other detectable health problems. The study concluded that 'a carefully balanced meat-free diet can maintain normal haematological values in exercising dogs.' In an article titled Plant-based diets for dogs, published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the authors (Sarah Dodd et al.) state, 'Dogs have dietary requirements for energy and essential nutrients, but they do not have a recognized requirement for animal-derived ingredients per se. In accordance with the current understanding of pet nutrition, any diet that meets or exceeds the minimum nutrient requirements of a dog for a specific life stage would be considered nutritionally sufficient for that animal, regardless of ingredients.' A new study by Andrew Knight studied guardian-reported indicators of health in 2,936 dogs fed either a conventional meat diet, a raw meat diet, or a vegan diet for at least one year. Seven general indicators of ill health were studied: unusual numbers of veterinary visits, medication use, progression onto a therapeutic diet after initial maintenance on a vegan or meat-based diet, guardian opinion and predicted veterinary opinion of health status, percentage of unwell dogs, and number of health disorders per unwell dog. As it turns out, dogs who consumed conventional dog food seemed to fare worse than dogs in the raw meat and vegan groups: 49% of dogs on a conventional meat diet were considered to have suffered from health disorders. In comparison, the numbers for dogs following the raw meat diet and the vegan diet were 43% and 36%, respectively.  The benefits of a vegan diet In a previous blog post, we talked about the potential benefits of feeding dogs a meat-free diet. To refresh your memory: a vegan diet can have several positive effects on a dog's health, including reduced allergy symptoms (the most common allergies in dogs are, in fact, chicken, beef, dairy, and egg), healthier skin and fur, and even a reduced risk of cancer. We also told the success story of Bramble, the vegan dog who lived so long she was featured in Guinness World Records as one of the world's oldest dogs.  by Sabine - Pawco foods     

Food supplements in pet food: An example in dogs with essential oils and melatonin as functional ingredients
Vegetable Origin
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8+ MIN

Food supplements in pet food: An example in dogs with essential oils and melatonin as functional ingredients

The word nutraceutical mixes the terms "nutrient" and "pharmaceutical." It was coined by Stephen DeFelice in 1995, who defined nutraceuticals as "foods (or part of a food) that provide health benefits, including prevention or treatment of a disease." Today, the term "nutraceutical" applies to a wide range of products, such as food and dietary supplements, botanicals, specific processed foods (functional foods), and isolated nutrients. The European Nutraceutical Association defines nutraceuticals as substances that differ from pharmaceuticals being "synthetic substances or chemical compounds formulated for specific health indications." The terms "food and dietary supplements" and "functional foods" are used without distinction as synonyms, although there are substantial differences between them that are not always obvious. On the one hand, food supplements contain nutrients derived from food products commonly concentrated in capsule, powder, liquid, or tablet forms. On the other hand, functional foods contain the nutrients necessary for survival, while nutraceuticals are complementary to the diet; they also help in disease prevention and health dysfunctions. There are numerous classifications of nutraceuticals, functional foods, and food and dietary supplements. Previously, they were classified as potential or established nutraceuticals based on food material and nutrients or concerning their positive effects on health. Their classification is mostly based on the chemical components or active ingredients. During the last couple of years, we have seen many new nutraceuticals. This resulted in a long nutraceutical list whose active ingredients are as diverse as surprising. It includes: phenolic compounds (i.e., flavonoids, anthocyanins, resveratrol), organic acids (vitamin C), tocopherols (vitamin E), carotenoids (provitamin A), anthraquinones, isoprenoids, alkaloids, isothiocyanates, and mono and polyunsaturated fatty acids (MUFAs, PUFA), among others. A particular type is prebiotic and probiotic products. Consumers in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Japan show great acceptance of these products and easily pay the high prices that most of them command. Perhaps, for companies producing nutraceuticals, the potential nutritional interest is dwarfed by the prospective market value that reached US$250 billion in 2018. In general, plant-based nutraceuticals tend to be better accepted by consumers than others, as they come from vegetal sources. In this sense, nutrition-based health throughout human history can be explained by Prof. Rowe's humorous comment: 2000 B.C.—Here, eat this root. A.D. 1000—That root is pagan. Now say this prayer. A.D. 1850—That prayer is superstition. Now, drink this potion. 1940 A.D.—That potion is poisonous. Now take this pill. 1985 A.D.—That pill is ineffective, take this antibiotic. 2000 A.D.—That antibiotic is not natural, better eat this root. By synergy, nutrition in pet food has been conquered by nutraceuticals and functional foods as well, constituting a category of products booming in the sector. Pet food companies are considerably increasing the incorporation of functional foods in the diets of companion animals, complementing the offer of conventional products (Ruiz-Cano, Sánchez, & Arnao, 2022). The global market for functional pet foods, including organic foods, reached a value of US$ 1,955 million in 2020 and is estimated to reach US$ 4,676 million in 2030, forecasting a growth of 8.8% in that period. Within this market, the dog segment accounted for 69% in 2019, representing approximately 50% of the global functional pet food market in 2020. This trend is expected to continue over the forecast period (Kamble and Deshmukh, 2021). Generally, veterinary professionals agree with the use of functional foods, as long as their recommendation has scientific data support for the safety and efficacy of these new products (Ruiz-Cano, Sánchez, and Arnao, 2022). There are many types of ingredients that constitute the new functional foods. Thus, the classics such as minerals, vitamins, fibers, various polysaccharides, mono- and poly-unsaturated fatty acids, etc., have been joined by others, which alone or in combination, are presented as novelties or even as "foods or ingredients miracle." In the pet food sector, we can mention novel compounds such as: 1) Polyphenols (flavones and isoflavones, flavonols and flavonoids, anthocyanins and pro-anthocyanidins); simple phenols such as phenolic acids and their alcoholic derivatives, ellagic acids, coumarins, stilbenes such as resveratrol, colorants such as betalains (betacyanins and betaxanthins) and curcuminoids, very topical, with wide and varied applications in health. 2) Aliphatic, aromatic and indolic glucosinolates, and their hydrolysis products, isothiocyanates, where their role as anti-oncogenic substances stands out. 3) Terpenoids, one of the most traditional in their use, are the carotenoids, although several xanthophylls with excellent characteristics have been added to the classic carotenes (α- and β-carotene, lycopene). Another group of terpenoids with growing applications are essential oils, composed of mono-, di- and sesquiterpenes, as well as various phenolic compounds. Aspects such as its enormous diversity, ethnopharmacological background, and progressive scientific study are opening up multiple applications as functional ingredients with a promising future. Triterpene saponins such as squalene and others have attractive applications as hypocholesterolemic and anti-inflammatory. 4) Alkaloids used pharmacologically for their psycho-and neurophysiological properties, which have been recently revisited with extensive studies (capsaicin, piperine, barbaloin, hypericin, etc.), are also the case of anthraquinones, studied for their antibacterial properties, among others. The key source of these compounds are various plants, constituting a great and diverse store of functional ingredients with enormous prospects for application in nutrition and health. With increasing momentum, large companies are chartering expeditions of scientists in search of novel plant ingredients, especially in Asian countries. Lately, other sources provide interesting ingredients and functionalities, such as microalgae. In this case, counting to its excellent qualitative and quantitative protein and fatty acid content, a mineral and vitamin content is added that is difficult to surpass by other sources. In addition, its good relationship between production costs and yields makes it possible to boast increasingly affordable prices. One of the most novel sources of ingredients is that of insects. Even though nutritionally speaking, they are high-quality biological materials, especially for their protein, it is difficult to think that their limited production can cover the sector's needs. Among the functional properties of these ingredients with interest for the pet food sector, we can point out, from general actions with non-specific benefits for health such as healthy, energetic, invigorating, restorative, anti-aging, etc., to more or less specific impacts such as anti-: bacterial, fungal, viral, parasitic; ingredients with regulatory activities of metabolic functions such as those related to cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose, ureides, etc.; we can also mention the ingredients against pain, nausea, dizziness, hypertension, vasodilators, etc.; those with organic activity such as hepato-protectors, protectors of the renal, urinary, coronary, pulmonary, arterial, gastrointestinal, oral, nasal, etc.; without forgetting those aimed at mood and sleep such as antidepressants, relaxants and sedatives, and finally, those with an activating capacity of the immune system and anti-cancer and anti-aging, which means a whole arsenal of natural compounds to improve against health dysfunctions in our pets. We must not forget  they are not drugs and, therefore, only adequate and generally continued use could - presumably - alleviate specific minor dysfunctions. For example, increased intake of certain functional ingredients (vitamin D, omega-3 PUFA, phytogenics such as some essential oils and tea catechins) affects positively immune function, improving defenses and reducing the risk of infection (Bobeck, 2020). Next, we are focusing on the development of a range of food supplements for dogs. In this case, a preliminary study was carried out on those aspects related to the health of animals that could be improved or alleviated with functional ingredients. In this range, aspects such as oral hygiene, fur, gastrointestinal, liver, and kidney problems; muscle and joint performance aids; aging and stress problems, remedies against fear, and some more were addressed. In this work, we will focus on exposing four of the food supplements developed, with health objectives in joint health (Joint), intestinal health (Intestinal Parasite), fur health (Skin & Hair), and nervous health (Relaxing-Anti- stress). These products complement an adequate diet for the dog since they do not provide fundamental nutritional constituents, so the easiest and most controlled way of supplying the product was thought of. Due to the nature of the functional ingredients selected, a common denominator based on high-quality salmon oil was chosen. Salmon oil, considered a nutraceutical of great interest (thanks to its anti-arteriosclerotic and anti-inflammatory qualities), has multiple health benefits for pets, such as: atopic dermatitis, musculoskeletal system, osteoarthritis, joint health, gastrointestinal tract, cognitive function, neurological health, and behavioral disorders (aggressiveness) among others. Thus, it can be used as a base material to formulate the rest of the functional ingredients.   Table 1. Packaging and formulation of food supplements for dogs.   Table 1 shows the functional ingredients used in the mentioned food supplements development. Essential oils used since ancient times present enormous baggage of historical and ethnographic knowledge (Baser and Buchbauer, 2015). Our experience and studies have allowed us to design appropriate formulations for each of the health objectives previously set. Stability and dosage studies (considering the synergistic interactions found) present each essential oil used (and their integration as a whole) as unique and specific supplements. The excellent antioxidant properties of essential oils come to complement that of other ingredients such as tocopherols and carotenoids, all of natural origin and perfectly integrated into salmon oil. The other functional ingredient used in these food supplements is melatonin. This natural compound has numerous excellent beneficial properties for animal health (Arnao and Hernández-Ruiz, 2018). Although there are few studies on pets, this molecule is one of the most studied in animal and human models. In our case, melatonin is incorporated as a functional ingredient under two aspects: as a regenerating agent of hair follicles, also used in treatments for seasonal (cyclical) alopecia of the flanks, and as an anti-stress and sedative agent against episodes of fear, anxiety, and nervousness that some dogs suffer; also in sleep disorders in elderly dogs. In addition, melatonin has excellent antioxidant properties, which reinforces the actions of essential oils, contributing to the stability of the whole. The food supplement is added to the food ratio indicated according to the dog weight (from 0 to >48 kg corresponding to a proportional amount of product between 4 and 16 ml). The functional ingredients used (terpenoids, polyphenols, tocopherols, carotenoids, EPA and DHA, and melatonin) contribute to the diet gradually improving the well-being of dogs due to their positive effects. Excellent palatability and subsequent acceptance of the developed products by animals have been verified, without causing adverse or secondary reactions in dogs, due to the balance between its components. Doctor Domingo Ruiz-Cano / R & D Department of Alinatur Pet Food, S.L., Lorca, 30817-Murcia, Spain.              Author for correspondence: [email protected] Mr. Ginés Sánchez Carrasco / Department of Production of Alinatur Pet Food, S.L., Lorca, 30817-Murcia, Spain. Professor Marino B. Arnao / Department of Vegetable Biology (Plant Physiology), University of Murcia, 30100-Murcia, Spain. [email protected]   BIBLIOGRAPHY 1. Kamble, A., Deshmukh, R. (2021). Global functional pet food market. Allied Market Research, https://www.alliedmarketresearch.com/functional-pet-food-market-A11855 2. Ruiz-Cano, D., Sánchez, G., & Arnao, M.B. (2022). Current vision of functional foods in the diet of cats and dogs. International magazine about pet food industry, edition nº 10, volume IV. 3. Bobeck, E.A. (2020). Nutrition and health: companion animal applications: Functional nutrition in livestock and companion animals to modulate the immune response. Journal of Animal Science, 1, 98: skaa035. 4. Baser, K.H.C., Buchbauer, G. (2015). Essential Oils Used in Veterinary Medicine. In: Handbook of Essential Oils; CRC Press, NY. ISBN 978-0-429-15566-6. 5. Arnao, M.B.; Hernandez-Ruiz, J. (2018). Phytomelatonin, Natural Melatonin from Plants as a Novel Dietary Supplement: Sources, Activities and World Market. Journal of Functional Foods, 48, 37–42. Fuente: Alinatur

Majority of Pet Owners Are "Obsessed" With This Food, Says Data
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Majority of Pet Owners Are "Obsessed" With This Food, Says Data

Only the best for our fur babies! This is according to a new Chewy.com survey about premium pet foods, which has fetched some telling new trends. When it comes to feeding our pets, it's clear that the majority of us are adamant that our fur babies eat as healthy as we do. The online pet products destination polled 1,500 cat and dog owners about what they look for when it comes to mealtime, and found that millennials and Gen X shoppers are "health-obsessed," with 52% of shoppers looking for pet food that has strictly "clean" ingredients. Meanwhile, 75% of millennial and Generation X pet parents "are especially interested in grain-free, organic and non-GMO food with 75 percent choosing these options," reports Pet Product News. Meanwhile, 87% said it's important to check the label, searching for keywords like "premium, natural, organic and USDA organic, high-quality nutrition, high protein, weight control, healthy, superfood, ancient grain, limited-ingredient, non-GMO, farm-fresh, and preservative-free." Similar to the local-ish ways we shop for ourselves, 84% of us are looking for pet foods that are made in the U.S., the survey found. Based on these findings, maybe it's not surprising that 89% of respondents believe it's important for pets to eat the highest-quality ingredients available, and 82% are willing to pay for those. With all this in mind, Chewy has partnered with Canada's Champion Pet Foods to launch specific destinations on their site where pet owners can find premium foods, or what Chewy calls "the highest-quality ingredients for superior nutrition and health." For pet owners and the cats and dogs we love, finding a one-stop destination for pet food that comes minus fillers, artificial ingredients, and dyes is definitely a treat. by Krissy Gasbarre   

Dogs Are Not Small Humans
Formulation
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5+ MIN

Dogs Are Not Small Humans

As a veterinary nutritionist, I must first focus on the differences in nutrition and feeding behaviors in dogs. As humans, we hopefully eat a varied diet which may help to meet our nutritional requirements. (Note, I am not a human nutritionist.) That said, most of us do not understand or calculate our total nutritional needs nor do we measure each nutrient in our meals to ensure we are getting enough, or too much of, each nutrient. My guess is that this likely leads to subclinical or clinical deficiencies in nutrients we are typically blissfully unaware of until there is an issue. What we eat is often dictated by availability, cost, and culture. I often think we do better with nutrition for our pets. Over the years we have studied canine nutrient requirements and have identified essential nutrients that when fed at specific amounts prevent deficiencies over time. We have also identified functional ingredients that further help to improve health when given at specific amounts. We utilize this information when formulating complete and balanced dog foods. When feeding dogs human table foods and creating homemade diets which do not take these requirements into consideration, we can see many nutrient deficiencies.1,2,3,4 The most regularly encountered in the literature are zinc, choline, copper, EPA + DHA, calcium, iron, thiamin, riboflavin, cobalamin, vitamin D, and vitamin E.1,5 Based on experience another common nutrient deficiency when dogs are fed homemade poultry-free diets is linoleic acid. In addition, since it is not commonplace for most owners to calculate the energy content of the diet they are feeding, dogs will often be underfed if they are large dogs and over-fed if they are small dogs resulting in weight loss or gain, respectively. Humans and dogs have significantly different nutrient requirements. Dogs have a higher protein requirement, and they cannot produce vitamin D from the sun. For humans, vitamin D is only conditionally essential since it can be synthesized with ultraviolet B radiation of the skin from 7-dehydrocholesterol. Therefore, supplementation is only needed when exposed to ultraviolet light is limited.  However, dogs (and cats) have very little 7-dehydrocholesterol in their skin and so they can't produce vitamin D in this manner, and it must be in the diet. Unlike humans, dogs can produce vitamin C during the normal metabolism of glucose and thus do not have a vitamin C requirement. Dogs also have unique feeding behaviors as anyone who has watched them gobble up cat litter-covered poop pops from the box can attest. At this point in their domestication dogs are dependent on humans for food. As for their natural feeding behaviors, we can look to feral populations and laboratory environments to gain information. Wild dogs hunt in packs and typically hunt medium-sized to large prey including deer and caribou. A dog can readily consume their entire daily caloric needs in just a few minutes in a single meal.   Conversely, dogs offered free access to food in a laboratory setting will eat 4 to 8, or frequent smaller meals throughout the daylight hours with some breeds also eating during the night as well.6 So although adult dogs often do well with multiple small meals throughout the day they can also tolerate twice-daily feedings. Our dogs seem to enjoy certain foods, treats, and novelties and these offer a way to stimulate them in what could otherwise be a monotonous environment. Yet, we would not expect a dog to smell and take the time to savor its meal the way we might if we went home for Nonna's cooking. That means that using food and food dispensing toys to encourage environmental and mental stimulation and hand-feeding while training is very important. However, please keep in mind that many dogs do well, or even better, with a consistent well-balanced diet and do not necessarily need a rotation of flavors or types of food.  There is one area where dogs and humans are similar. Each dog, like each person, is an individual. While one dog may benefit from a high-fat, high-protein diet, fed once daily to accommodate for its athletic activities, another dog may experience severe GI upset when fed in that manner. It is common for nutritional fads for humans to make their way into marketing for new dog foods which can pose nutrition and health risks. One concerning trend is to try to incorporate new and novel ingredients that are not well understood into the diet and supplements. While benefits of these ingredients are certainly possible so is the risk of toxicities and nutrient interactions. Companies should exercise caution when investigating new ingredients and owners should be careful about using novel or multiple supplements without discussing it with their veterinarian. It is not just nutrition and metabolism that makes dogs different from humans, but fundamentally who they are as a species. Dogs are meant to run and sniff. They need their human to fulfill their part of the human-animal bond by providing an enriching life alongside rules and boundaries that keep dogs safe and happy. Their individual breeds may also be genetically wired to herd, hunt, protect, or be a companion. When we try to make them into small humans by carrying them when they can walk and not giving them opportunities to explore and be comfortable in their environment with and without us, we cut off a portion of who they really are. When we do not help them understand appropriate or inappropriate behavior through consistency and training and providing appropriate outlets for behaviors that can be dangerous in certation situations, we see an increase in anxiety and destructive behaviors. Over the years I have had more and more dog owners requesting medication to modify anxiety and undesirable behaviors when it would be more appropriately managed with behavioral modification and preventative measures such as training and exercise. While there are times when medications can reduce stress enough to help make behavioral modification more successful, it is not meant to be the quick-fix people desire. The best measure to take against having your beloved pup live its healthiest life mentally and physically is to remember they are in fact dogs, with different nutritional and behavioral needs than humans. by Renee Streeter, DVM, DAVCIM - BSM Partners    

Myth-Busting False Claims about Pet Food
Formulation
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4+ MIN

Myth-Busting False Claims about Pet Food

In this feature of The Whole Bowl, we want to provide facts that debunk the most startling false claims often made about pet food.  PFI's members make 98 percent of all U.S. pet food and treats. For us and for our members, pets are part of the family. We understand the careful thought pet lovers put into what they feed, and how they care for, their dogs and cats. As pet food makers, our members know they are responsible for providing the sole source of nutrition for most of America's pets—they take the responsibility of producing safe, healthy pet food very seriously.  Myth: Feeding dry pet food will 'de-hydrate' your pet.  Fact: Dry pet food is one of many healthy, nutritious pet food options available.  As we addressed in another blog post, pets need plenty of fresh drinking water, and pet food companies include hydration guidelines in feeding guidelines on pet food packages. Ensuring your pet is properly hydrated helps keep its body systems functioning normally and better able to absorb and digest the nutrients provided in pet food.  In addition, most commercial pet food recipes — wet, dry, fresh, limited-ingredient or raw-infused — are formulated to be 'complete and balanced,' meaning they provide total nutrition for the life stage of your pets – more than 40 different nutrients in all. Each of these recipes include protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals, and certain amino acids.  Myth: Carbohydrates are bad for pets.  Fact: Carbohydrates are beneficial to dogs and cats. Carbohydrates often get a bad rap, but carbohydrates actually provide your pet with quick energy that can help spare protein for use in supporting other bodily functions. Carbohydrates also can be a good source of fiber, which promotes gut health and motility. Certain sources of carbohydrates (such as corn) also provide essential nutrients such as protein, fat, fiber and vitamins.  Did You Know: Dogs, along with their human companions, became more adept at digesting carbohydrates about 5,000 years ago, once farming replaced hunting and gathering?  Myth: Using unhealthy by-products in pet food is a cheap way for pet food companies to keep production costs low.  Fact: By-products are nutrient-rich ingredients. By-products are the animal- and plant-based ingredients produced during the processing of human food and provide key nutrients that your dog or cat requires. Some animal-based by-products may not seem appealing to us, but they are safe, nutrient-dense and flavorful for pets. However, if you choose to purchase pet food that does not contain animal-based by-products, there are many options on the shelf.  Myth: No one regulates pet food.  Fact: As the sole source of nutrition for most dogs and cats, pet food is among the most highly regulated of all food categories in the United States. Commercially prepared pet food is well-studied and well-understood. Pet food companies are committed to food safety, and they invest millions of dollars to advance food quality and safety. In addition, they must also meet strict standards set by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), U.S. Department of Agriculture and state regulators.  Did You Know: In order for an ingredient to be used in a commercial pet food recipe, it must either follow the FDA approval/review process or be recognized by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO), which develops model regulations for state-level regulation of pet food? Claims that pet foods are made of low-quality fillers and 'toxic' ingredients do not stand up to the facts.  Myth: Commercial pet food causes allergies and seizures.  Fact: Just like people, some pets are predisposed to food allergies, or develop an allergy later in life. Less than 10% of pets are diagnosed with a food allergy. If you think that your pet is suffering from a food allergy, it is critical to take your pet to a veterinarian, who can help identify the environmental factor that may be bothering your pet. If your pet does have a food allergy, there are commercial pet foods available designed to help support pets with severe allergies to certain proteins and other food ingredients.  Myth: The 2007 pet food melamine recalls are proof there is a problem with the pet food industry.  Fact: Recalls are a critical preventative step in the U.S. food safety system. Pet food makers conduct safety testing throughout the manufacturing process and, should they detect a potential issue, they can quickly remove a product from the market through a recall. PFI members support the Food Safety Modernization Act and cooperate with the U.S. FDA to ensure the safety of pet foods. A list of all FDA-regulated human and pet food recalls is available online.  The 2007 pet food recalls were the tragic result of intentional, criminal adulteration of safe ingredients used in human and pet foods (wheat gluten and rice protein) for economic gain. As soon as the adulterated ingredient was identified, pet food makers worked with FDA to ensure the affected products were recalled from the market. Pet food makers now test for a variety of substances, and work within their supply chains to confirm ingredient safety.  Myth: Commercial pet food is the cause of rising prevalence of pet obesity.  Fact: Weight gain is the result of too many calories consumed and too few calories burned — no matter the food. It's easy for pets to consume more calories than they need, just as people can. Pet owners need to closely monitor pets' food intake and provide them with sufficient exercise. For this reason, pet food packages include feeding guidelines to help pet owners and their veterinarians determine the appropriate amount of food to give a cat or dog based on life-stage, activity level and other factors.   by Pet Food Institute 

Humanization of pets driving innovation in natural ingredients
Vegetable Origin
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Humanization of pets driving innovation in natural ingredients

For many Americans, the humanization of pets has moved beyond trend and into the norm. Increasingly, pet owners see their furry friends as part of the family, and desire to provide their pets with human-like products, experiences and care. For example, SPINS data show that 50% of dog owners, and about a third of cat owners celebrate a pet's birthday with a treat, gift or party, while 40% of dog owners and 25% of cat owners bought clothing for their pet in 2020. The American Pet Products Association (APPA) reported that consumers spent $103.6 billion in 2020 on pets and $42 billion of that was on pet food and treats. And the pet industry shows no signs of slowing down. For Markets projected steady growth, predicting the global pet care market will reach $358.62 billion by 2027. Pandemic accelerated pet ownership According to the 2021-2022 National Pet Owners Survey conducted by APPA, pet ownership during the pandemic grew to an all-time high of 70% of U.S. households (about 90.5 million homes); 12% of adults with kids under 18 adopted pets during this time. Pets provided a welcome distraction at home for many experiencing increased stress and time spent on lockdown. A 2020-2021 Statista survey revealed that Millennials represent the biggest share of U.S. pet owners, at 32%. This was followed by Baby Boomers with 27%, and Gen Xers representing 24% of pet owners. As go pet parents… As pet owners increasingly humanize and accept pets as family, pet owners not only want to keep pets fed, but also healthy and happy. Per SPINS, nearly 70% of Millennials want natural and organic products for their pets, and 73% of Gen Zers and 68% of Millennials are willing to spend more on sustainable pet products. Further, in 2020, proprietary Mintel data identified 'make it mine' as a key consumer trend, and highlighted that 61% of U.S. pet owners are willing to pay more for pet foods that help support specific dietary needs of their pets, including gut health, healthy weight and healthy aging. Pet owners spent more than ever in 2020 on products to keep pets comfortable, healthy, entertained and calm. Interestingly, we are seeing these same drivers reflected in the purchase decisions of consumers for their own needs. Increasing consumer demand for natural and healthy ingredients is driving leading manufacturers to source higher quality materials and ingredients and to innovate product lines like never before. The pet food and treat industry is definitely stepping up to the challenge, offering an unprecedented variety of options for pet foods, treats and supplements. APPA noted over 40% of both dog and cat owners purchase 'premium' pet food, and organic pet products saw 22% growth during 2021. Today's innovation is pushing into an increasing number of pet food and specially formulated treats that contain 100% natural, plant-based, ingredients, including specific attention to sustainability as well. Just as consumers want clean, simple and sustainable ingredient labels for their own products, the same is true for their pets. An APPA pandemic insights study showed in 2020, 70% of pet owners claimed they spent much more time with pets during lockdown and social distancing, and 72% of pet owners agreed that spending time with their pet helps reduce stress and increase a sense of well-being—both for themselves, and for the pets. This is a real win/win in a time when stress and mental health top the charts, and are affecting so many people (and pets) around the globe. Pets are known to help their humans with everything from mood and stress to exercise and security. As we bond with pets, the tendency is to humanize them. Nutrition and condition-specific Many pet parents are looking for the highest-quality, most nutritious food they can find for their pet, and are willing to use supplements and functional food and treats to help promote wellness. Several areas that consumers are concerned about for themselves are also key drivers in the pet space, including things like: Immune health  Gut and digestive health Allergies  Anxiety/stress  Weight management  Healthy inflammation Joint health Increasingly, consumers are taking vitamins and supplements in efforts to improve nutrition, and some are changing their diets and routines to help ensure long-term health and overall wellness. Pet parents are also using pet supplements, functional treats and lifestyle changes to help give their pets all the support they can to help ensure a happy, healthy and comfortable life. Packaged Facts recently highlighted findings from its survey of pet owners, noting that pet owners stated COVID-19 spurred greater concerns about pet health. Among both dog and cat owners: Over 40% are paying closer attention to pet health and wellness Nearly 25% are especially concerned about their pet's anxiety and stress About 20% are especially concerned about their pet's immune system About 15% have made changes to the pet health care products they buy            According to Mintel's Global New Product Database, digestive health is among the fastest-growing claims within the pet food functional nutrition category. And SPINS reported 22% growth in 2021 for pet items containing CBD. Metabolic oxidative processes influence most inflammatory conditions (Circ Res. 2018;122:877-902). Inflammation derives from the activation of specific pathways by external stimuli, or metabolic ROS (reactive oxygen species) buildup. Most pets and people can benefit from antioxidants to help keep oxidative stress in check. Natural, Clean-Label Some of the trending natural botanical ingredients used functionally or additively in pet foods, treats and supplements, include: Hemp and CBD Citrus flavonoids Pomegranate extract Green tea extract Rosemary extracts Sweet blackberry extract Rhodiola extract Ginkgo extract Epimedium Mango leaf extract Seaweed extract The pet food and treat market is also turning in mass to natural preservation solutions to meet consumer demands for clean label and natural. Lipid oxidation in pet food can result in loss of nutritional value, as well as noticeable off-putting rancidity, which can lead to both the consumer and pets rejecting the food. A number of botanical solutions are successfully being used as natural preservatives, including rosemary and green tea. Not a passing trend Pet humanization is far from a passing fad. The connections between pets and their owners are only growing stronger, and brands are increasingly innovating as pet owners are looking for more humanized options for pets. These bonds and friendships are tight, and why wouldn't pet owners want many of the same health and wellbeing for their pets as they do for themselves and the rest of their families? Similar, but not identical Many of the health challenges humans are experiencing are distinctly reflected in pets as well. However, of course, humans and animals are not exactly the same, and there are some considerations in varying nutritional needs for pets and humans. Foods that are not properly balanced to meet a dog's needs can lead to health problems. For example, calcium and phosphorus must be balanced, and dogs need more taurine. And, while vitamin C is considered an essential vitamin for humans because the body requires it, but can't make it, for dogs it is not considered essential, because they actually form vitamin C in the liver. It is important to work with animal nutrition experts in making formulation choices for pet foods, treats and supplements. Many safe, tested, natural, clean label, organic and sustainable options are available that can help 'up-level' pet brands to meet the discerning and premium demands of pet owners today. by Collette Kakuk, - VP of global marketing at Layn Natural Ingredients, has three decades of experience in branding, customer experience, qualitative and quantitative market research, predictive modeling and competitive analysis—including food service, food processing, manufacturing, restaurant, banking and Fortune 100 business consulting. Her passion for people, animals and the planet helps fuel her interest in natural botanical ingredient marketing and innovation. Kakuk proudly served in the U.S. military and holds an MBA from the Ross School at the University of Michigan.
 

Scoular is 4 years ahead of its 5-year pet segment plan
Formulation
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7+ MIN

Scoular is 4 years ahead of its 5-year pet segment plan

Known by many worldwide as a grain ingredient supplier across the human food, pet food and animal feed industries, Scoular has also supplied animal protein ingredients for several years. In Sept. 2020, the company launched Petsource as a wholly owned subsidiary of Scoular to co-manufacture freeze-dried ingredients, treats and complete and balanced diets for the pet food industry. Scoular expected to eventually expand the Petsource facility but the need for that occurred more quickly than expected. We designed the layout in order to expand,' said Amy Patterson, president of Petsource. 'We anticipated doing that in three to five years but based on significant demand, the growth that our customers are seeing in their brands and our desire to continue to be a support and a solution for them, we are launching into the expansion far faster. 'Initially we anticipated doubling our footprint but, again because of capacity needs and the knowledge that we have built, we have the confidence to actually triple the capacity of the facility,' Patterson shared. 'That's specific to freeze drying but it also allows us to triple all of our raw processing and our refrigerated food solutions for our customers. We're excited to bring that to the marketplace far earlier than we anticipated and to continue to help grow with our customers. It will be one of the largest [freeze-drying facilities] dedicated to pet food through this expansion.' It's unique for the established ingredient supplier to offer finished product manufacturing. 'Traditionally, full-scale manufacturing isn't a space where Scoular has spent a lot of time, but we had confidence that we could,' said Paul Maass, chief executive office of Scoular. 'We reached out to Amy for her experience, and she's done a terrific job. 'The foundation for Petsource started with listening to our customers and what solutions they needed,' Maass explained. 'There was capacity constraint in the marketplace, and somebody had to step in there. So, we looked at it and said why can't Scoular take that step and solve that for our customers and that's where the creation of Petsource came from. We've had a long history of listening to customers and looking for solutions.' With the pet food industry's sustained growth, Scoular customers were reporting inadequate capacity in the marketplace in several areas including the freeze-dry marketplace, particularly capacity in freeze drying dedicated to pet food manufacturing. The Petsource facility in Seward, Neb. is an end-to-end solution from ingredients entering the raw side of the facility through meat processing, freeze drying and finished packaging solutions. 'High value proteins and the ability to offer a finished manufactured solution was an opportunity for us to not only be confident in the raw material supply but now also in the manufacturing of those finished goods, and knowing that we had control over each of the steps was really important to us,' Patterson said. 'At the end of the day, the freeze-dried product is still a raw feeding option for pets. To control the process from the frozen protein state all the way to the freeze-dried finished good is important from a food safety perspective. We married the knowledge we had around the raw material side and our manufacturing expertise to deliver what we believe is a really exciting and high-trust product to our brand owners.' Maass said in the pet food industry there are still a lot of functions in the freeze-dried space where meat processing is done in one location, freeze drying in a different location and packaging completed somewhere else. Petsource is able to focus on food safety and high-quality freeze-dried production dedicated to the pet food market all under one roof. Designed for raw safety Patterson emphasized that Petsource believes, as does many of its brand partners, in raw food options for pets. To maintain the quality and confidence in its raw formats, Petsource employs high pressure pasteurization (HPP), stringent quality testing protocols and hold-and-release processes at each stage of the manufacturing. 'Some manufacturers may see that as cumbersome and unnecessary,' Patterson said. 'We see it as absolutely critical to ensure that each step of our process builds that confidence before product goes out our door.' The Petsource facility is designed with two sides, a raw side and a ready-to-eat side. Even though the finished product is considered a raw state, there are different handling standards within each side of the facility. All the color schemes on the raw side of the building are red, from the floor to the sanitation sites to the clothing the operators wear. And similarly on the ready-eat side, a gray color scheme is used. All employee welfare areas – the locker rooms, the break rooms, the production rooms – are specific to employees' work zone.  Everything is duplicated within the facility in order to maintain that separation between raw and ready to eat. 'With high pressure pasteurization, that is a multi-log step reduction and we have that done outside of our facility,' Patterson explained. 'That is the only part of our process we do offsite. But the product enters in through separate dock doors. It goes through specific handling so that it can enter into the ready-to-eat side of the facility with the clear separation and segregation of not only our people but also the environment, with the air handling units and the temperature control managed independently in the two portions of the facility.' Less than six months after manufacturing began, Petsource received an SQF audit and scored an excellent rating.'These are our four-legged family members that we are feeding,' Patterson said. 'Every decision we make ensures that a food safety mindset is top of mind and building that within a team that is brand new was a collective effort with our operations, our food safety and our quality teams. I'm extremely proud of that third-party validation.' Investing across all market segments Recent investments by Scoular specific to the pet food industry include the opening of Petsource in Sept. 2020 plus its planned expansion announced Nov. 2021; the opening of the Emerge™ facility Dec. 7, 2021, which produces concentrated barley protein for use in pet food and aquafeed; and a new partnership to build an Encompass™ fishmeal processing facility in Warrenton, Ore., which will provide fishmeal and fish oil to pet food and aquaculture manufacturers.   Maass pointed out that these are just a portion of the company's overall investments across its core business segments. Notable projects include last year's opening of its new high-speed flax processing facility  in Regina, Canada, the move to a new global headquarters in Omaha, Neb., on Dec. 15, 2021, and  expansion of several  grain handling and storage facilities in Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri. 'We have a lot of investments that we are making to support our businesses and the growth opportunities that we see,' Maass said. 'These investments, including those in the pet segment, speak to the broad depth of what we have going on across the entire company. We are absolutely all in on pet food. We're investing in it and love it. And we're equally as invested in our other core businesses and we're investing in them as well.' Maass says Scoular strives to be a trusted partner providing innovative solutions to the industries it serves. 'We are listening to our customers,' Maass explained. 'We have curiosity about what's really going on in their world and we are a trusted partner to deliver an answer for them. In the freeze-dry space, we've taken the steps to offer something that is very unique from a safety and quality perspective, and we continue to see more demand than there is supply.' That steady demand is what prompted Scoular to quickly move ahead with the Petsource expansion and triple its capacity. 'We have a lot of confidence in our customers, and we have a lot of confidence in our team,' Maass said. 'We couldn't triple our capacity [at Petsource] if we didn't believe in both. As a team, we make sure we are engaging externally, have a pulse on what's happening and make informed decisions of how best to offer solutions that will help our customers. We recognize the pace of change is accelerating every day. We've got to be agile.' Patterson attributes the company's longevity and success to being a responsive company to both its customers and its team members, as well as embracing flexibility. 'Having the ability to be responsive to customers' needs and to do it in a responsible way has guided Scoular through the last nearly 130 years,' Patterson said. 'We lead with that mindset of integrity and doing the right things in the right ways. It's why I've been so proud to be part of Scoular the last several years.' By Jennifer Semple - Pet Food Processing

Plant-based Pet Food, from myth to reality: is it a viable product?
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

Plant-based Pet Food, from myth to reality: is it a viable product?

By Luciana Chippano

As we´re already said plant-based Pet Food wants to step stronger. The truth is that, from science, it is not advisable to feed 100% vegan products to all Pets, as is the case with Cats, for example, who need certain nutrients that can only be obtained from meat products. However, the humanization of Pets is increasingly evident: people - especially millennials - want to raise their animals according to their own values and ideologies. In this sense, it is to be expected that, with the trends of organic and sustainable consumption, foods that are not part of the consumption chain will be sought. In fact, the latest 2019 statistics from the United States found that, with more than 80,000,000 Pets, there are currently more Pets than children under 18 years of age. A 100% plant-based diet, is it viable? The most recent study at the MDPI, conducted by Dr. Andrew Knight, stressed that it is entirely possible to feed a Dog a 100% vegan diet, as long as the food chosen is complete and nutritionally balanced. This is possible mainly for one reason: Dogs are no longer what they used to be. Historically they have been compared and associated with wolves, but our companions have evolved throughout the evolution of the human being. Their genetic component has been moving more and more away from what allowed comparison with wolves, which allows them to survive today - and live fully - with a type of diet, which is not based on animal protein. Ingredients that were previously unthinkable in your digestive system, such as starch, today are even absorbed and used for energy production. For proper nutrition, Dogs don´t need meat, they need protein, fat, vitamins and minerals, all of which can be found in a plant-based diet. Today's domesticated dogs have the ability to metabolize carbohydrates, and in most cases, subsist and thrive on a diet with considerably less protein than their wolf ancestors; today it is considered that dogs are not facultative carnivores, but omnivores.   The most important thing to achieve a quality vegan Pet Food: proteins The great challenge when creating vegan formulas for Dogs is the replacement of the protein provided by meat products. When choosing which protein to include in the formula, it is not only important to consider its nutritional quality, but also its long-term sustainability since, if we are making a change towards a more sustainable and environmentally friendly food, it is prudent to ensure that its environmental impact is the least possible. Likewise, producers must take into account the availability of the product in order to obtain it continuously and supply the market with the requested demand. Some of the most used vegetable proteins, both for humans and animals, are soybeans, peas or peas, lupins, wheat and corn. At the moment, it is innovating with chickpeas, lentils and beans, and particularly it is studying the benefits and the nutritional component of two plants: duckweed and microalgae. Both are an interesting protein source because they can be grown in water all year round, in the right climates. Due to their natural habitat, both can grow in areas where many other foods cannot be grown, so they would not compete with other agricultural activities either. Duckweed is an aquatic plant in the Lemnoideae subfamily. It has a higher amino acid concentration than other plant proteins and is comparable to animal protein, including fish meal, in terms of protein content. Its main disadvantage is that it can´t be grown in very cold climates. Seaweed, meanwhile, can be an alternative source of protein for reasons similar to duckweed. In terms of production levels, it´s estimated that a single hectare of algae can produce more than 40 tons of protein, which is very beneficial. Like duckweed, you need the right environment to be able to grow them throughout the year. Its main disadvantage is that its cell walls are more durable than those of other plants, so more processing is needed to obtain its protein. As Dogs and Cats became domesticated over time, human food scraps have become more and more prevalent, inevitably leading to physiological adaptations to process more plant-based foods and components. In addition, most pet owners who seek to lead a more sustainable life every day (which includes a plant-based diet), understand that eating certain animals and protecting others is, in short, an irony. By opting for vegan Pet Food they reduce the killing of living beings and the pollution that comes with the treatment of meat and the depletion of the oceans.   The real test: palatability As with any other Pet Food, palatability is essential, because it is they, the dogs, who will give the last "thumbs up." The latest published data shows that very good palatability performance can be achieved using ingredients of plant origin. To achieve this, it will be essential to take advantage of flavor modulation and masking technologies to ensure that the vegetable protein has a primitive aroma and textures similar to those of meat. It is likely that the development of a plant protein alternative will require additional ingredients. Brands and manufacturers can - and should - prepare today to meet the growing demand for plant-based Pet Food, because it's a movement on the rise. As Pet Food trends closely follow human trends, plant-based protein ingredients are increasingly dominating the market. The energies of the industry should be focused on manufacturing vegan alternatives and of sufficient nutritional quality to be the exclusive food of those Dogs owned by the children of millennials and for those who bet on food, human and animal, free of animal protein. By: All Pet Food

The Sustainable, Nutritious, Functional Power of Algae
Vegetable Origin
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6+ MIN

The Sustainable, Nutritious, Functional Power of Algae

Seaweed (a macroalgae) has long been a dietary staple in Asian countries such as Japan, China, and Korea, while consumption of spirulina (a microalgae) dates to the Aztecs, who harvested it from the surface of Lake Texcoco. In the United States, algae may be best known in the food industry as a source of key hydrocolloids, including carrageenan, agar, and alginates. Today, food & beverage uses of algae continue to expand. The global $4.7 billion algae products market is expected to reach $6.4 billion by 2026, increasing at a compound annual growth rate of 6.3%; North America has the largest share (MarketsandMarkets 2021). Functional and nutritional attributes, as well as the potential sustainability benefits of algae, are driving demand and positioning it as a promising pet food & food of the future. 'Algae has a number of interesting traits that make it stand out as a future food crop, including high quality protein and overall nutritional content, promising scalability and cost, and consumer familiarity,' says Priera Panescu, senior scientist–plant-based specialist at The Good Food Institute. 'Moreover, cultivating algae requires little to no habitable land or agrochemicals, so algae's use as a crop would contribute significantly to a more sustainable food system.' What Are Algae? Algae is a broad term used to describe aquatic, eukaryotic organisms that can undergo photosynthesis but lack the vascular system and structures such as leaves, stems, and roots that are found in plants. Microalgae like Chlorella are unicellular, while macroalgae, such as red and green seaweed, are multicellular. Cyanobacteria (so-called blue-green algae) have traditionally been grouped with algae despite being prokaryotic. Arthrospira platensis, or spirulina, is a well-known cyanobacteria. The algae category is extremely diverse and includes anywhere from 30,000 to over 1 million species (Guiry 2012). While only a tiny fraction of them have been consumed by people, the nutritional benefits of those species are impressive. Chlorella and spirulina, for example, contain up to 70% dry weight protein with all the essential amino acids, while edible seaweeds are known for their fiber content, particularly their soluble fiber (Wells et al. 2017). Other key nutrients that can be found in algae include omega-3 fatty acids (docosahexaenoic [DHA] and eicosapentaenoic [EPA]), vitamins (B12, C, and E), minerals (calcium and potassium), and a wide range of carotenoids, including lutein, zeaxanthin, astaxanthin, and beta-carotene. In some cases, it's the functional properties of algae—such as thickening, gelling, and emulsifying—that make them important to the food industry. Algae Ingredients Mineral Complex. One emerging use of algae is as a natural source of minerals. The Aquamin line of ingredients by Marigot features a marine mineral complex of calcium, magnesium, and 72 trace minerals derived from the red algae Lithothamnion, harvested off the coast of Iceland. Known as a calcified or calcareous seaweed, Lithothamnion deposits calcium within its cell walls, making it a concentrated source of this essential mineral. Besides being easily absorbed by the body, Aquamin doesn't impart a chalky mouthfeel, unlike some other calcium sources. It's available in dispersible, acid soluble, and water soluble options. Aquamin is currently being used in ready-to-mix sports nutrition powders with additional opportunities in bakery, snacks, and confections. Protein. Algae is also becoming recognized as a sustainable and animal-free protein ingredient. Algenuity offers a line of protein-rich whole algae powders from Chlorella vulgaris in white, yellow, and lime colors called Chlorella Colours. Besides protein fortification applications in cereals, bakery products, and ready-to-mix powders, Chlorella Colours also contribute functionality in products like plant-based cheeses and yogurts. Back of the Yards Algae Sciences (BYAS) produces both high-protein Chlorella and spirulina powder, with a focus on 'finding better and more environmentally friendly sources of plant-based protein to feed our planet,' according to Marc Geytenbeek, chief of public affairs at BYAS. The company's zero-waste philosophy is driving development of a range of algae ingredients at its urban farming facility, including algae-based colors and animal-free heme to flavor plant-based meats. DHA and EPA Omega-3 Oils. DHA and EPA omega-3 fatty acids continue to be in-demand nutrients, with fish as the primary dietary source. However, fish don't actually produce these nutrients—they get them through the microalgae they consume. DSM's algae-derived omega-3 oils, which include life's DHA and life's OMEGA, capitalize on this to offer vegetarian sources of DHA and EPA. Algal omega-3 oil may also provide a more sustainable option than fish oil since it doesn't contribute to overfishing. Ongoing research into the health benefits of EPA (for heart health) and DHA (for brain and eye development) are supporting the popularity of these ingredients, especially in dietary supplements and functional beverages. Astaxanthin. One species of algae, the freshwater Haematococcus pluvialis, is among the most concentrated natural sources of astaxanthin—a carotenoid with strong antioxidant capacity that supports mitochondrial health. AstaReal has been optimizing this ingredient for over 30 years, according to Karen Hecht, scientific affairs manager at AstaReal, with ingredients that range from astaxanthin oil to liquid emulsions to water dispersible powders. While there's a greater awareness in the Asia Pacific region of astaxanthin (a popular antioxidant ingredient in functional yogurts and ready-to-drink juices), it is also beginning to show up in the United States in natural energy and immunity drinks, sales of which have been growing since the advent of COVID-19. Since astaxanthin imparts a red color to products, Hecht recommends orange-to-red formulations like cherry or blood orange. 'The color is what people look for in astaxanthin,' says Hecht, who notes that astaxanthin is what makes salmon red. Beta-Glucan. Another algae ingredient being used in immune support products is algae beta-glucan. While beta-glucan is a type of soluble fiber often associated with the cardiovascular benefits of oats, research into different types and sources of beta-glucan indicates a number of bioactive properties. The linear beta-1,3-glucan found in the algae Euglena gracilis, for example, is gaining attention for emerging research on its potential role in the immune system. Current applications of algae beta-glucan include gels, gummies, powders, and functional foods with immune support positioning. Kemin offers two options: BetaVia Pure, a 95% beta-glucan dried whole algae fermentate, and BetaVia Complete, which contains over 50% beta-glucan, along with protein, fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals. Algatech's BioGlena is similar to BetaVia Complete, with a minimum of 55% beta-glucan plus other essential nutrients. Algatech recommends formulating with up to 450 mg per serving of BioGlena in food applications. Natural Color. The range of pigments found in algae, which include chlorophylls, carotenoids, and phycobiliproteins, has expanded the use of algae as a source of natural colors—particularly natural blue colors. GNT's 'spirulina-based EXBERRY colors provide a range of naturally vibrant blues,' says Jeanette O'Brien, vice president at GNT USA. This has been the Holy Grail for beverage and confections manufacturers seeking a stable blue color for use in clean label formulations. The high-intensity blues of spirulina-based EXBERRY colors create eye-catching beverages. Photo courtesy of GNT USA 'There are very few naturally occurring blue shades available in fruits and vegetables,' O'Brien notes. Even the anthocyanins found in blueberries 'are only blue at very high pH values, and the color intensity and stability at those values is very low.' GNT relies on evaporation to process its spirulina, avoiding the use of chemical solvents. By blending spirulina with yellow raw materials, GNT can also offer shades of green that 'deliver a spectrum from turquoise to lime green,' says O'Brien. Future Applications A current research initiative gives insights into what might be next for algae. One project at the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology aims at texturizing red seaweed proteins to create seafood alternatives. A Technion team, led by Yoav Livney in the Department of Biotechnology and Food Engineering, previously worked on extracting proteins and starches from macroalgae using the emerging technology of pulsed electric field processing. Now the team has turned its attention to algae-based fish substitutes that capitalize on the nutritional benefits of algal protein, the texturization properties of algal biopolymers, and even the potentially similar 'sea flavor,' explains Livney. 'These are exciting times to be a food engineer and tackle these important global sustainability, animal welfare, and health challenges,' says Livney. New algae-based bioactives will likely be another key growth area for algae ingredients. Algaia is one company at the forefront of this research, discovering and developing new bioactives from algae lipids, proteins, micronutrients, and pigments. Algaia is evaluating bioactive properties ranging from antioxidant to antimicrobial to immune-stimulative—all potentially valuable to the food and dietary supplement industries. In addition, the photoprotective effects of certain algae are useful to the personal care industry, while the biostimulant effects are being tapped in agriculture to reduce fertilizer usage. Looking ahead, the sheer versatility of algae will help ensure a steady stream of innovation in algae ingredients. Consumer interest in algae is expected to keep growing, along with algae's reputation as a healthy and sustainable ingredient. by Miranda Grizio
 

Hemp in Animal Food: Sure , It's there, but is it legal?
Vegetable Origin
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3+ MIN

Hemp in Animal Food: Sure , It's there, but is it legal?

What are the problems with these unregulated products being in the marketplace? Why should we care? And what can be done about it? The first concern is around animal health and safety. The second is the safety of the food from production animals entering the human food chain. And finally, there are legal implications for animal food manufacturers looking to market animal foods or animal products produced with hemp ingredients. The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is stepping in to address the growing use of illegal hemp products in animal food, including snacks and treats. This week, in collaboration with 16 industry organizations, including the American Feed Industry Association, AAFCO sent an open letter to lawmakers and other agricultural leaders addressing the trend of state legislatures introducing bills that allow the use of hemp and hemp byproducts in commercial livestock feed and pet food. It is confusing for consumers to see hemp-based products offered for sale for their pets or livestock, and the hodgepodge of state legislation allowing it creates an unlevel playing field for other ingredients that follow the proper regulatory pathways. The letter highlights concerns that hemp and hemp byproducts (e.g., CBD) are being used in animal food before federal approval affirms they are safe and legal to use. Some in the hemp industry are actively lobbying legislators and state departments of agriculture to support legislative pathways for the sale of hemp and hemp derivatives for use in animal food, rather than following recognized regulatory structures. State leaders and proponents of hemp in animal food are encouraged to work through the defined regulatory pathways used by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and AAFCO to assure ingredients undergo a thorough safety review before they are commercially available as feeds or pet food. The letter states: 'Currently, no hemp ingredients have been approved through the established animal feed ingredient review pathways. It would be imprudent to bypass these established procedures needed to protect both human and animal health and unilaterally legislate approval of animal feed ingredients at the state level.' How can hemp products be researched for use in animal food? Well, someone has to pay for it. The letter encourages proponents of hemp-based animal foods to support research through universities or private labs so that the safety and utility of hemp can be fully understood before it is allowed for commercial purposes. This is what companies do when they want to have new ingredients approved. They don't circumnavigate regulations and move straight to store shelves. They spend the money and time, and have their new products undergo the appropriate testing and review before they are put in animals' mouths. The resulting data supports applications submitted through the established animal food ingredient review process. We agree with AAFCO that it is impulsive to legislate approval of animal food at the state level, bypassing the robust safety reviews imparted by the FDA and AAFCO. Every day, Americans purchase food for their livestock and companion animals with the reasonable expectation that it is safe, and that the nutritional benefits claimed on the label are supported. The AFIA continues to stand by the FDA and AAFCO review processes to provide the necessary protection for consumers regarding safety and efficacy of products. by Louise Calderwood - AFIA

Krill for Cats and Dogs
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Krill for Cats and Dogs

Research shows that consumers are spending more money on their pets' food than ever before, with the aim to keep them healthy and happy. According to recent data, Americans spent more than $103 billion on their pets in 2020. With each consecutive year, US pet industry expenditures have gone up. It's safe to say that a well-balanced diet comprised of essential nutrients is key. In the next few years, we will likely see more pet food and supplement brands utilizing functional ingredients that offer proven health benefits. The inclusion of nutraceutical ingredients such as probiotics, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins will become the norm. It's very likely that these ingredients will rank at the highest quality, comparable to human-grade level. Omegas for Pet Health Every pet food formula contains fats, which should be a balanced combination of the essential omega 6s and omega 3s. Omega-3 fatty acids are among the most important nutrients to support long-term health for humans and pets. Since pets and people cannot produce omega-3 fatty acids in their bodies, we all need to include them in our diets. There are many omega-3 choices on the market, making it essential to understand the important differences in sources and how they are delivered in the bodies of animals. Omega-3 fatty acids can be plant-based from sources such as flaxseeds (in the form of ALA) or can come from a marine source like fish or krill (in the form of EPA and DHA). Krill-Based Omega 3 Supplements Krill is increasingly popular. The tiny crustaceans called krill make up one of the largest biomasses on our planet. Krill happens to be an increasingly popular option in the pet nutrition space for many health benefits, including skin and coat; liver, joint, brain, and heart health; and immune system function. In fact, krill may be more efficient than other omega-3 options and can start to show results for pets at an early age. Its high incorporation and uptake of EPA and DHA into your pet's cells makes it a great option for pets of all ages. In addition to its many health benefits, krill is a sustainable ingredient. People consume omega 3s as part of their healthy lifestyle, but at the same time, it's important to know that these supplements come from sustainable sources. Pets can now benefit from all the same omega-3 benefits from krill as their human companions. By Andrew Fuente -  Sales Director QRILL Pet - Americas

AFIA Pet Food Conference 2022
Pulses and Oilseeds
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4+ MIN

AFIA Pet Food Conference 2022

After an excellent breakfast, which also served to meet up with old friends and new members of the Pet Food Industry, Ryan Frank, from Mars Pet Care, welcomed everyone present and gave us an overview of what we could expect from the Conference. The conferences then began with talks by experts from AFIA and the industry, which paved the way for us to enjoy the "Emerging Issues of the Pet Food Industry", topics addressed by graduate students, the new talents of the Industry. Undoubtedly, the papers and these young graduates called everyone's attention as they addressed very current issues related to new ingredients of plant origin, among other topics of great interest. Clare Hsu from the University of Illinois was the first to take the scene and focus us in a few seconds on a very suggestive topic "Chemical composition of selected green banana flour and its effects on texture and color in canned foods, apparent  total tract digestibility and fecal metabolites of adult cats'. Green banana flour? We all wondered and put aside what could distract us to focus on Clare Hsu, who undoubtedly had a lot to tell us.As this flour is a functional ingredient, gluten-free, with low levels of sugar, starch and a natural colorant, it would undoubtedly have a great application in pet food. In her study, Miss Hsu used 40 adult domestic cats and the dietary treatment was based on Rice and Potato Control food with 1,2 and 4 % sustitution of GBF; concluding at the end of the study that green banana flour has a high resistant starch content, which is indigestible and can be a source of  fiber. Mrs. Hsu also concluded that when GBF was used in canned food, it could influence the texture and color and has no difference in nutrient digestibility of fecal characteristics of cats with diets containing GBF compared to Rice and Potato Undoubtedly this  study that will require much more research to be definitively applied, but led us to look at the banana from another perspective within  the Pet food industry. Samuel Kiprotich from Kansas State University  then gave a lecture on the Application of encapsulated acidulants to control salmonella enterica in raw meat-based diets for dogs; another topic that caught the attention of the experts, since it addressed as objectives to determin the antimicrobial efficacy of encapsulated lactic acids in controlling of salmonella entérica in raw pet food, as well as to monitor the PH of this type of food. Finally Powan Sing from the University of Guelph, who could not be physically present, offered  her presentation through a video on the Effect of Legumes on Canine Cardiac Function, another innovative research for the Veterinary industry of our pets. Basically the study focused on the inclusion of 0 to 5% of pulses in dog diets and its effect on their cardiac health. As we all know, legumes have been widely used in pet food for a long time and undoubtedly have a series of conditions to be an alternative protein since it isn´t dietary source of taurine and on the other hand it's a source of total dietary fiber. However, in this case the analysis of the use of pulses focused on the cardiac health effects of our pets through their different levels of inclusion (from 0-5%) and took into account different types of pulses, peas and chickpeas, lentils and beans used in canine diets, when feeding healthy dogs for 5 months. As a result of the study she got that feeding healthy dogs grain free, pulse inclusive diets with up to 45% inclusión of green peas, beans and lentils  didn´t result in negative repercussions on canine cardiac health, based on the electrocardiograms performed. All of the above has a lot to do with the use of  grain-free diets, with a great boom in recent years, which replaced flour grains  by protein of animal origin derived from cow, pork, rabbit, duck and salmon. ; factor that contributes to reduce the appearance of allergies in our pets according to some authors. It´s a high-protein, low-carbohydrate diet, although whether grain-free diet is more healthy or not is still up for debate. Undoubtedly our industry has new challenges ahead, but our young talents, supported by the expertise of Industry  professionals, universities and associations, will seek new ingredients and ideas that meet the different needs of nutrition, sanitation and equipment intended for the pet food industry in a more sustainable way… The future is guaranteed! by: Iván Marquetti All Pet Food  

Global pet food survey: Demand for recognisable and health-promoting ingredients.
Vegetable Origin
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3+ MIN

Global pet food survey: Demand for recognisable and health-promoting ingredients.

With the majority of pet owners expecting their pet's food to be the same quality as their own, there is significant demand for high quality, natural and healthy ingredients. The survey included 2,500 dog and cat owners in the UK, USA, Brazil, Germany and China (i). The research highlights how pet food trends continue to mirror those in human nutrition. It demonstrates the vast market potential for the use of clean label, health-promoting and no- or low-allergenic ingredients, with sustainability and plant-based origin also now of increasing importance. Naturalness and clean label drives pet food purchasing According to the survey, consumers are increasingly considering natural aspects when buying food for their pets. Using less or no additives makes pet food appear healthier for more than 4 in 5 pet owners. BENEO's findings also demonstrate that pet foods featuring natural ingredient claims have a significant influence on their purchase prospects, with 79% of pet owners checking the label for any ingredients they dislike. Many potential customers are also calling on brands to make it easier to track what's contained within pet foods, making this an important area of focus for producers. Alongside the demand to eliminate additives from pet foods, a spotlight is also being placed on allergenic ingredients: three quarters of pet owners agree that using no allergens, such as soy or corn, makes food for pets seem healthier(i). BENEO's rice ingredients are a viable way to reduce the allergenic components in pet foods and enhance their appeal to consumers. Support of healthy digestion a priority As in human nutrition, healthy digestion is also driving buying behaviours in pet foods. More than 90% of pet owners say that supporting digestive health improves the likelihood of them purchasing a product, inducing them to actively look for easy-to-digest products. Notably the demand for prebiotics is gathering pace and their benefits are widely perceived, with 70% of respondents agreeing that adding such fibres to pet food makes it seem healthier. A recent Mintel study further confirms this interest in prebiotic ingredients for pets, with half of the product launches of dry cat and dog food in Europe now containing inulin, fructo-oligosaccharides or chicory derived products(ii). Increasing sustainable focus Another consumer trend that is further shifting into the realm of pet foods is that of sustainability, with more than half of owners now stating that they pay attention to sustainability and the carbon footprint in purchase decisions of their pets' food. According to the survey, using claims such as 'environmentally friendly' improves consumer interest in buying a pet food product. BENEO offers a range of chicory root fibres and rice ingredients that help manufacturers address the increased demand for clean label and healthy pet foods. Besides their nutritional benefits, BENEO's range of rice ingredients have outstanding technological properties, making them suitable as natural alternatives to modified starches and hydrocolloids or enhancers of physical characteristics in many types of pet foods and snacks. The company has also built its business around the sustainable sourcing of all its plant-based ingredients. Maygane Ronsmans, Product Manager Animal Nutrition at BENEO, comments: 'The findings of this latest pet survey highlight the rising demand from owners for understandable, cleaner ingredients labels and for healthier nutrition for their pets. We are also seeing this reflected through the rising number of customers favouring BENEO's clean label and hypoallergenic rice starches and proteins, which are the ideal plant-based solutions for premium pet foods. 'The technical properties of our functional rice ingredients allow producers to use them as natural ingredients, and their nutritional benefits make them suitable for sensitive pets, or those with allergies. The combination of BENEO's natural and plant-based ingredients and its expertise in healthy nutrition help manufacturers bring to market new and relevant pet food products that meet these consumer demands.' by Beneo

Alternative Proteins, Functional Foods Driving Pet Food Ingredient Trends
Vegetable Origin
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5+ MIN

Alternative Proteins, Functional Foods Driving Pet Food Ingredient Trends

To learn more about current pet food ingredient trends, we asked Jorge Martinez Carrillo, President of Pet Solutions at ADM, to share some insights and discuss how manufacturers can respond to these trends while providing pets with the best possible nutrition.  With the humanization of pets driving many of the emerging trends in pet food, 'pet food manufacturers are therefore challenged to understand how trends in human nutrition may be affecting pets,' Carrillo said, 'and how they can adapt them in a nutritionally safe and beneficial way.' All natural, sustainable ingredients In pursuit of optimal nutrition for their pets, pet owners are looking closely at ingredients — not just what they are, but where they come from, how they're produced, and how they support pet health and wellness. 'Our research finds that 30% of global pet owners spent a significant amount of time researching the best food options in the last year,' said Carrillo.  One of the things they're checking for is that the food contains only natural ingredients, nothing artificial. Carrillo pointed to The Future of Pet Food Market Report 2021 from Mintel, which reported a 41% increase in 'all natural' pet foods launched globally.  And as concerns about sustainability rise, more pet owners will be looking into the sustainability aspects of the pet food they purchase, including its environmental footprint and the treatment of animals used in the recipes. 'During the next year, we anticipate increasing consumer demand for ingredients that are traceable and sustainable,' Carrillo said. 'Awareness and interest in ethical and environmental claims are set to grow, and brands that are transparent about their sourcing will be more likely to win with conscientious consumers.' More protein options - Plant-based proteins Just as many consumers have increased their intake of plant-based foods, more than half of pet owners are showing interest in feeding more plant-based proteins to their pets. For pet owners who wish to completely eliminate animal meats, some pet food companies have already introduced meatless pet foods that include plant-based proteins and/or eggs — Freshpet, Natural Balance, and Wild Earth, to name a few. But many pet owners are simply seeking out pet foods that incorporate more beneficial fruits, vegetables, and other plant-based ingredients. 'There is growing interest in flexitarian-style, plant-forward pet foods that feature alternative proteins like beans, pulses, and ancient grains,' Carrillo said.  Ancient grains Grain-free diets haven't gone out of style, but 'grain-free foods do not offer additional health benefits over a food that contains traditional or ancient grains,' Carrillo noted. As pet owners become more aware of this, they may be exploring more grain-inclusive diets for their animals.  Ancient grains, Carrillo said, 'deliver protein, starch, and dietary fiber. Additionally, traditional grains like corn and wheat are as biologically appropriate as other popular sources of carbohydrates in today's pet foods.' Insect-based proteins Insect protein could become more prevalent in the pet industry as consumers seek a more sustainable lifestyle for themselves and their pets. While there may be some who are squeamish about this idea, it looks like many pet owners are willing to give it a try — 43% are open to the idea of feeding insect protein to their pets. And the opportunity for pet food manufacturers to begin researching and formulating pet foods with insect protein could be on the horizon, as the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) tentatively approved the use of dried black soldier fly larvae in adult dog food last year.   Functional ingredients and superfoods  ADM is also seeing 'greater demand for science-backed, real-food solutions that support proactive and holistic health management,' Carrillo said. This may take the form of foods that address health challenges like obesity, allergies, and aging or boost overall immune, digestive, and oral health. Personalization trends may also drive up demand for pet food that targets the needs of specific age groups, breeds, and sizes. These formulas rely on functional ingredients that support healthy systems. For example, 'botanical extracts may contain phytonutrients that help increase the integrity and maintenance of the intestinal tract or natural antioxidants that can support immune function,' Carrillo explained. 'Probiotics, prebiotics, and postbiotics are increasingly common to manage the gut microbiome and support overall health.' Providing safe, healthy diets with novel ingredients  The first step toward bringing new ingredients into the mix is extensive research. 'It's important to understand that pets need nutrients, not ingredients,' Carrillo noted. 'Before a novel ingredient makes its way into pet foods or treats, it should be validated through research to ensure it is acceptable for pets and will nutritionally support a balanced diet.' That's why ADM partnered with University of Illinois researchers to further study plant- and yeast-based proteins and their applications in pet food. They concluded that pea, potato, faba bean, and soy protein concentrates, as well as dried yeast concentrates, are quality sources of proteins and essential amino acids. Combined with the right ingredients, these protein concentrates can help meet the nutritional requirements of dogs and cats while providing new and alternative protein sources. Veterinary recommendations are also a major influencer of how consumers feel about feeding certain ingredients to their pets and can help clear up misunderstandings. Carrillo referenced ADM's research on consumers' longstanding avoidance of soy in pet food. After exposure to veterinary research about the unlikelihood of canine and feline soy allergies, 28% of pet owners said they'd consider feeding soy to their pets in the future. Younger generations were more likely to have this changed opinion about soy. Of course, when working with new ingredients, pet food manufacturers also have to ensure they're complying with federal regulations and labeling requirements and selecting suppliers that reliably provide safe, quality ingredients. Pet owners often chase after trends because they're looking to give their pets longer, healthier lives. So it's not worth trying out new ingredients if they could potentially do more harm than good. 'No matter the ingredient,' Carrillo concluded, 'safe and healthy pet food is developed as a complete formulation to meet the animal's optimal nutrient requirements for all life stages, from puppy or kitten to senior.' by Krystle Morrison- Food Industry Executive

Two companies join forces to help extend the lives of dogs
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Two companies join forces to help extend the lives of dogs

With an investment of over $25 million pesos and exhaustive research and scientific development work applied to canine medicine, Juvenia Nutrition was created, a new dry pet food for adult dogs produced by Grupo Molino Chacabuco, with a powerful antioxidant core based on of resveratrol, developed exclusively and in the process of being patented by Microsules. The Argentine laboratory with more than 53 years of experience in the pharmaceutical sector managed to transfer to veterinary nutrition, an antiaging substance of natural origin and widely used in human medicine. The result: a functional food that nourishes and incorporates a powerful antioxidant into the body, that helps reduce muscle, cognitive and bone deterioration in canines as a result of aging. This is in line with the growing trend of pets in Argentine households (three out of four households have at least one canine companion); and responsible ownership entails paying special attention to their diet; especially in the case of adults who require special care, and it's there where those pet food that can improve their quality of life are a priority For his part, Mr. Tomás Crespo Tassara, General Manager of Grupo Molino Chacabuco, was "very proud to be part of this alliance between two Argentine companies that keep investing in technology to achieve quality products that are at the forefront of the demanding quality standards of the Industry." "By adding Juvenia Nutrition, it  allows us to reach the consumer with a novel proposal at the most sophisticated level of the pet food market, complementing our portfolio of products with which for more than twenty years we´ve been participating in the intermediate brand segment, being Raza one of the benchmarks in the category, currently exporting to several countries of the region", Crespo Tassara concludes by All Pet food

Raw diets: Pet owners frequently underestimate human health risks
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

Raw diets: Pet owners frequently underestimate human health risks

It has been well-documented that both commercial raw pet foods and raw meats sold for human consumption have high rates of contamination with dangerous bacteria, many of which are antibiotic resistant. However, it is our experience that many pet owners are still unaware of human health risks from raw pet foods, including common treats such as pig ears, bully sticks, and most freeze-dried meat treats (like freeze-dried liver treats). There have been numerous incidents that have proven that raw pet products do make people sick and in rare cases have actually caused human deaths. An outbreak of Salmonella linked to pig ear dog treats sickened more than 150 people in the US in 2019. Four infections with E.coli O157:H7, which resulted in one death, were reported in 2017 and several pet owners and a veterinarian were infected with a strain of tuberculosis from their cats that were infected from eating a commercial raw diet in the UK in 2019! These are just a few examples of a bigger problem. Despite these reports and many other scientific publications documenting risks, many pet owners who feed raw diets or treats are unaware of the risks and do not take appropriate safety measures to protect themselves and their families. This lack of awareness or appropriate assessment of risk may be in part because many online sources and proponents of raw-feeding hype potential benefits (typically despite a lack of scientific evidence) while downplaying or ignoring potential risks. A small research study published early last year investigated the food safety knowledge, practices, and perceptions of 174 pet owners who feed raw diets. In that survey, 95% of pet owners were 'very confident' that their handling of their pet's food was safe and 89% did not perceive that they or their family were at risk of food borne-illness. A similarly large percentage (84%) were also confident in their cleaning and sanitizing practices. However, at the same time, the majority of respondents reported they didn't always use safe food handling processes such as thawing raw meat for their pets in the refrigerator or using separate utensils and food prep areas for their pet's food. Other risky practices reported included rinsing raw meat in the sink, not always washing their hands after prepping their pet's food, or not using disinfectants to clean surfaces, utensils, and pet food bowls after food prep or meals. The majority (87%) of the pet owners cited the internet as their main source of information on raw diets; only 8% reported asking a veterinarian for food safety information. Only 12% of pet owners were aware that Campylobacter is a common contaminant of raw meat and only 36% were aware that foodborne illness could be fatal. While this survey only included a small number of pet owners, the results, along with the clinical experience of many veterinarians and Board Certified Veterinary Nutritionist® , suggest that many pet owners who feed raw foods to their pets may underestimate their risk of illness while overestimating their ability to prepare their pet's food in the safest manner to protect their pets and themselves from foodborne pathogens. While we definitely do not recommend feeding raw diets due to their health and safety risks, if you make the choice to feed raw foods or treats to your pet, whether home-prepared or commercial, it is very important to follow proper food safety handling procedures and obtain objective information from reputable sources. by Cailin R. Heinze, VMD, MS, DACVIM (Nutrition)  

BENEO announces multi-million investment program
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

BENEO announces multi-million investment program

 The first step will see more than €30 million invested. The entire program will ensure a significant capacity increase of more than 40 percent of BENEO's global chicory root fibre production to meet rising customer demand and drive further growth within the market. The work on both production sites is beginning in 2022. Current market trends see a high demand in prebiotic chicory root fibre due to the versatile benefits it offers in product development. Over the past four years, the number of new product launches containing chicory root fibre inulin has grown by 50 percent globally , with the market expected to reach 11.48 billion USD in 2028 . BENEO's latest investment will allow for continued fulfillment of market needs within the food and feed industry, while demonstrating the company's commitment to growing its chicory root fibre business. Christoph Boettger, member of the Executive Board at BENEO comments: 'BENEO's chicory root fibres meet key consumer needs of today and we are convinced that they will continue to play a central role in healthy nutrition in the future. With increased capacity, BENEO continues to offer a secure supply to its customers and partners worldwide.' The chicory root fibres inulin and oligofructose are the only plant-based prebiotics. According to the International Scientific Association for Pro- and Prebiotics (ISAPP), they belong to the very few proven prebiotics. The use of chicory root fibres in product development allows manufacturers to respond to leading consumer trends such as digestive health and immunity, inner well-being, weight management, blood sugar management and bone health. With two production sites in both the Northern and Southern hemispheres, BENEO provides flexibility to customers, ensuring secure supply of prebiotic chicory root fibre around the world. Boettger continues: 'As announced previously, in summer 2022 a second refinery line in Pemuco will already increase the production capacity significantly. But we won't stop there. The recent investment decision will ensure that BENEO's production capacity is further growing. On top of this capacity increase, CO2 emissions are being reduced. This means that the production site in Pemuco will be carbon neutral in a few years. Additionally, the site in Oreye will have reduced the specific energy consumption per ton of product by more than 50 percent by 2030.' Such an achievement is only possible because BENEO can ensure that sustainability resonates in everything it does, with the highest level of energy efficiency being applied to the factory developments. These efforts are contributing to the company's goal of being carbon neutral in 2045.  As well as contributing to BENEO's carbon neutral ambitions, the investment will create a number of job opportunities as a result of expanded production facilities. At the Pemuco plant for example, an increase of approximately 15 percent in employees is foreseen over the next few years. by Beneo

3 Major Dog Product Trends to Watch in 2022
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

3 Major Dog Product Trends to Watch in 2022

'Humanization trends are driving the dog food category in new directions as people treat pets as members of their family,' said Vic Mason, president of World Pet Association (WPA), which hosts SuperZoo each year. 'As more human-grade foods hit the market, dog owners are eager to try fresh options that promote health and vitality.' James Restivo, client director, pet lead, for The Nielsen Co., pointed out that 95 percent of pets are considered family.. 'Even in the indulgent treat side, we're seeing health and wellness at the underpinning,' he said at the Petfood Innovation Workshop at 2018 Petfood Forum, held in Kansas City, Mo. 'Grain-free treats, meat-first treats, all those treats that are pushing through.' As a result, Future Market Insights estimated in a recent market survey that sales of dog food are projected to grow by a 6.2 percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) worldwide through 2031. Organic and plant-based options are anticipated to drive sales in the worldwide dog food market, which is estimated to be about $45 billion this year and expected to hit more than $81 billion by 2031. All of this makes sense as we consider that dogs are widely regarded as 'the best friend' of the pet community. However, the growing trends in dog food are no longer as simple as 'organic' or 'natural.' As people experience the benefits of certain diets, they want the same for their pets. For example, dog owners can now find food that mimics their own paleo or ancestral diet, features sustainable ingredients, is made of 'next-gen' ingredients or is inspired from foodie culture and imitates human cuisine. But as every shop owner knows, any area dominated by trends or disruptors can be overwhelming. That's why we've broken down a few dog food categories experiencing steady growth that should extend into the next year and beyond. Organic, Natural Ingredients While sales of natural, organic food have been growing for years, they show no signs of slowing down. In a study done by Farm Journal, more than 82 percent of households in the U.S. buy organic food on a regular basis—accounting for 5 percent of total U.S. food sales, with organic pet food sales close behind. When buying a holistic dog food, owners not only want optimal nutrition, they also want a food that can boost skin and coat health, good digestion and joint strength. Earlier this year, Chewy conducted a survey of 1,500 dog and cat owners to gain insight into their food choices. In the survey, 73 percent of owners demonstrated their pets' health is as important as a family member's. Seventy percent made food choices for their pets that mirror their own, with 80 percent of respondents revealing that health concerns led to higher-quality food purchases. Specifically, millennials and Generation X pet owners looked for grain-free, organic and non-GMO food, with 75 percent choosing these options. 'Last year at SuperZoo, over 300 exhibitors featured natural products,' Mason said. 'With organic and holistic products in such high demand, expect to see even more products at SuperZoo next August in our dedicated show floor areas, like Nature's Pathway and Health and Wellbeing.' Vegan and Specialty Diets As more Americans embrace plant-based diets, many pet owners are also seeking to feed their dogs in accordance with their values. Fruits and vegetables are becoming more common in foods for their nutritional value and flavor. Even though many people consider dogs to be carnivores, dogs can benefit from the fiber and antioxidants in berries and vegetables, including strawberries, raspberries and sweet potatoes. Additionally, while dogs need protein, some owners are choosing foods that contain alternative sources. As with humans, obesity in pets is a big concern, with specialty diets becoming more science based and sophisticated each year. Expect foods customized for life stage, lifestyle, weight and breed to remain hot sellers in the months to come, including low-calorie diets and mono-protein diets to treat allergies. You're also likely to see owners asking for more transitory trends they see on TikTok—like a perfect 'bark-cuterie' board made of bacon and blueberries or 'pup-sicles' made from frozen yogurt. Sustainability It's important to note that the concept of sustainability goes beyond ingredients; it also influences choices of packaging and operations. Eighty-four percent of respondents in the Chewy survey indicated they are interested in homegrown, domestically produced food. Even beyond where food is sourced, customers are also interested in how animals are raised as well as a manufacturer's commitment to sustainability. As dog owners continue to explore new diets and alternative products for their pets, this is a great time to be a pet retailer. By providing specialty and sustainable products, you won't just gain customers, you'll also gain their trust and loyalty. If you want to know more about which trends and treats to stock, then mark your calendar for SuperZoo 2022, Aug. 23-25.'SuperZoo is the ideal place to learn about nutrition, speak directly with manufacturers and suppliers, and connect with other pet retailers who have experienced success with certain brands and diets,' Mason said. 'While we are all incredibly passionate about our four-legged customers, ultimately, we learn through our human connections.' The World Pet Association (WPA) brings the pet world together so quality interaction and education between and among product suppliers and pet owners can create healthier, happier pets and a healthier, more productive pet industry. Founded in 1950, WPA brings thought leadership, innovative thinking and best practices to the pet industry, working to inform and educate the general public in order to ensure safe and healthy lifestyles for our animal friends. by  The World Pet Association

Feeding Puppies
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Feeding Puppies

Well don't worry, we're here to help! With a quick look at some of the fundamentals of feeding you'll soon have no trouble finding the very best food for your brand new best friend! Puppy nutritional needs After weaning, which usually occurs when the puppy is 4-6 weeks of age, puppies essentially require all of the same nutrients from their diet as adult dogs but because they are growing they need more of some of them per pound of bodyweight than their fully-grown counterparts. It's particularly important that puppies receive plenty of good quality protein from their diet as well as the right level of fat and certain important minerals like calcium and phosphorus for healthy development. Meat is the best source of protein for dogs as it tends to be easier for dogs to digest and utilise than other forms of protein like those from plants. A good diet for a puppy should therefore include meat as the first ingredient and meat should make up a good proportion of the food as a whole. Puppy-specific vs all-lifestage foods For puppies, store-bought pet foods come in two forms: 1. Puppy-Specific foods
These foods are made to cater specifically for the nutritional needs of puppies. For that reason they usually feature higher levels of protein, fat and the important minerals to allow for healthy growth and development. 2. All-lifestage foods
Another way to increase the amount of protein, fat and minerals going into your puppy is just to feed a 'regular' food, but more of it. This is essentially the idea behind 'all-lifestage' foods. Although this approach is not as tailored as a puppy-specific food, it is arguably the more 'natural' way to feed puppies since dogs in the wild, along with all other mammals including us humans, tend to eat more or less the same foods throughout our lives after weaning, only varying the quantity of food rather than the type of food.
As long as the diet is of a high quality and agrees with the puppy, either approach can work equally well. Like all pet foods, both puppy foods and all-lifestage foods can vary enormously in quality so be sure to take a look at the nutritional ratings on the Dog Food Directory to get an idea of how the different options compare. Making the change Going to a new home for the first time is usually an extremely stressful period for puppies so the last thing you want to do is add to the stress by switching the diet. For this reason, it's always best to stick to whatever food the breeder has been feeding for at least the first 2 weeks before making any changes. Once your puppy is properly settled in, it's still important to ensure that any dietary changes are made gradually, slowly introducing the new food over the course of a week or two to give the system plenty of time to adjust. Feeding the right amount Any complete food that is labelled as suitable for puppies should have suggested puppy feeding guidelines on the packaging. This is certainly the best place to start but as all puppies are different it's important to keep an eye on the individual's weight and adjust feeding amounts accordingly. You can find our brief guide on how much to feed here. From puppyhood to adulthood While 12 months is generally regarded as the point when dogs reach adulthood, some breeds mature at very different rates than others. Smaller breeds, for example, may reach full size as early as 9 months old while some giant breeds can continue growing until 18 months or even older. As their growth slows, puppies naturally need less food and many have a reduced appetite. At this stage it is important to change on to an adult food (or reduce the feeding amounts if feeding an all-lifestage food) to avoid any excessive weight gain. by David Jackson

Bühler builds large-scale insect plant for Agronutris in France
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

Bühler builds large-scale insect plant for Agronutris in France

This collaboration is a major milestone for both organizations. It reinforces Bühler's commitment to ambitious targets that will help mitigate climate change and build a more sustainable food system and supports Agronutris' goal to establish itself as a world leader for sustainable nutrition. The plant is planned to go into operation in 2023. The 16,000 square meter insect plant in Rethel, France, when operating at full capacity, will process up to 70,000 tons of organic residues and produce high-quality protein for the aquaculture and pet food markets every year. 'With the launch of this new site, Agronutris is entering its industrial deployment stage. The facility of Rethel will be our springboard for the further industrial development of our activity,' says Mehdi Berrada, CEO of Agronutris. 'Bühler is a world-leading company with a tremendous experience in the food and feed sector. We trust in their capabilities to support us in the insect industry. This allows our teams to focus on our core activities: insect biology and operational management of our production flow. Our research and development activities make for our competitive advantage.' Bühler's solutions for Agronutris will cover the entire supply chain. This includes feedstock preparation to provide safe, palatable, and nourishing feed to the larvae and a fully automated larvae growth system with sophisticated climate control. Bühler will also deliver the processing line to efficiently transform the grown larvae into protein meal and lipids with consistent quality, as well as the frass (excrement) handling system for a secure offtake of the rearing residues. In addition, Bühler will be responsible for the entire automation and the timely project execution. The latter encompasses engineering, procurement, manufacturing, supply, installation, and commissioning. 'The new project with Agronutris is a milestone for us. It confirms our goal of establishing ourselves as a key solution provider for the insect industry and to increase the inclusion of insect proteins in animal feed. Our solutions contribute to more sustainable feed supply chains,' says Andreas Baumann, Head of Market Segment Insect Technology at Bühler. Growing Demand  To feed 10 billion people who are expected to live on our planet by 2050, about 250 million metric tons of additional protein will be necessary every year. This is an increase of 50% compared to today. The industry must address this challenge with a more sustainable production of existing sources of protein as well as alternative sources for direct human and animal consumption. Edible insects can play a unique role in upcycling food waste streams to high-quality proteins, which makes them an increasingly important source of protein while being environmentally friendly. The market of insect proteins as feed is expected to significantly grow in the next ten years. The total turnover of insect feed operators is expected to achieve EUR 2.2 billion per year by the end of the decade. This growth will be led by two main sectors: the aquaculture sector, which will make up for 30% of sales volumes of insect producers by 2030, and the petfood sector, which will account for 40% of the insect protein sales volumes by 2030. Agronutris aims to contribute to the emergence of this industry and to become one of the global leaders of the sector. The growth of its team (joined by entomologists and agro-industry experts), its recent fundraising of EUR 100 million, and the collaboration with major companies such as Bühler, are some of the factors that will allow the company to live up to this ambition. Bühler is committed to reduce water, energy, and waste by 50% in its customers' value chains by 2025. This will help mitigate climate change and be the foundation of a more sustainable food system. Insects offer a unique opportunity. They are not only a healthy source of protein for food and feed, but they can be fed on waste, therefore converting food waste into protein. And their frass can be used as a fertilizer. That is why they are an important pillar in Bühler's strategy to become the leader in sustainable proteins for food and feed. by Buhler group  All Pet Food

The South African farm turning Flies into Food for Pets - and Maybe People
Animal Origin
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4+ MIN

The South African farm turning Flies into Food for Pets - and Maybe People

Launched in 2018 on an industrial estate on the edge of the city, the Maltento farm feels a long way from its more conventional rural equivalent. Yet each month it pumps out over 10 tonnes of high quality protein-rich feed, most of it destined for export overseas. "You've got a food shortage, and people who are starving, and then you've got a waste problem at the same time. So I started looking at how we can rebalance that," said founder Dean Smorenberg, reflecting on what inspired him to get into this field. He is a former management consultant who began farming black soldier flies in his bathroom in 2016 before entering the business full-time. The model is an appealing one to carbon-conscious consumers: the fly larvae feed on waste food products - in this case mainly spent grains from a nearby brewery - turning it into marketable protein and producing a fertiliser by-product. The process consumes significantly less water and land than other types of protein production and is far less carbon intensive. A 2020 study by researchers in the UK and Germany found that the global pet-food market releases as much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere as the total emissions of the Philippines or Mozambique. Rather than looking to directly challenge the massive global soy or fishmeal industries, which currently provide much of the world's affordable protein, Maltento is looking to offer products that supplement a pet food's flavour or nutritional properties. "Insects have a lot more value than just being a protein," says Mr Smorenberg, pointing out that what are known as antimicrobial peptides in the fly larvae help to improve gut health. "And there's no other crop in the world that can give you 52 harvests a year from one space." The Maltento farm, which is expanding rapidly, is divided into sections according to the various stages of the insects' lifecycle. Pupae undergo metamorphosis in a dark room on the ground floor before being moved upstairs to a breeding enclosure, where adult flies under ultraviolet lights lay eggs in mesh cages. "This is basically the engine room of the farm, if you like," says Dominic Malan, who is responsible for growing the number of potential customers. "The temperature and the humidity are the most important things to make sure they thrive." Next door, in the nursery, the eggs hatch into "neonates" which are distributed into small plastic containers full of feed. These are then stacked in temperature-controlled chambers where they grow at an extraordinary rate. "We put in 0.5g of these little guys," says Mr Malan. "And after six days they've grown [collectively] to 4kg. They're such voracious feeders." Once the flies are fully grown, the containers are emptied into a machine that separates them from the "frass" - effectively fly manure - which will be sold as a kind of organic fertiliser. Mr Malan says there has been considerable interest in this by-product from the pharmaceutical cannabis sector. From this point the flies' larvae can go one of several ways. Many are dried out and exported whole to feed pet chickens in the US. Others are effectively minced into a rough powder which will be used by a Norwegian firm to make dog food. Others still are pressed for their oils, or hydrolysed into a liquid digest. In the corner of the room lie rows of giant white sacks full to the brim with dried larvae. To a human, the bugs taste earthy, with a subtle maltiness that comes from the spent grains on which they are fed. To cats and dogs, says Mr Malan, they are irresistible. According to RaboResearch, a Dutch agribusiness research organisation, global production of insect protein for pet food could reach half a million tonnes by the end of the decade, up from barely 10,000 tonnes today. And it is an industry that is evolving fast. At a laboratory in the Woodstock neighbourhood of the city, with views of Table Mountain, the farm's scientists are constantly seeking to improve the taste and health benefits of the larvae products. This depends on the diet the larvae are fed, the conditions in which they are grown, and also how the final product is processed. "They're actually really versatile," says Dr Leah Bessa, a food scientist with a PhD in using fly larvae as a meat substitute for human consumption. "There's a lot of functionality yet to be unlocked." The latest product Dr Bessa has been working on is something designed to be added to pet foods to improve their taste and nutritional benefits. Before joining Maltento, she made headlines in South Africa after launching a company that sold insect-based ice cream. In a 2013 report, the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation said eating insects could help to address food shortages around the world. But despite insects being a popular snack in many countries, Western nations have proved resistant. For now, Dr Bessa believes large-scale insect consumption is likely to remain mostly confined to pets. "We're just not quite there yet," she says, adding that squeamishness remains an obstacle. "Dogs are a lot easier to feed insects to than humans at this point." All photographs by Tommy Trenchard

Scoular to Begin Producing Sustainable Barley Protein Ingredient For Pet Food
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

Scoular to Begin Producing Sustainable Barley Protein Ingredient For Pet Food

Emerge was developed by Scoular to help meet the growing demand for plant-based, sustainable ingredients in pet food and aquafeed. Scoular also recently announced it has broken ground on a new 14,400-square-foot marine protein processing facility in Warrenton, Ore., that also will serve the pet food and aquafeed industries. 'Scoular is proud to develop this innovative feed product and partner with Idaho's barley farmers and pet food and aquafeed manufacturers to add value throughout the supply chain,' said Paul Maass, chief executive officer of Scoular. 'Scoular has a long history of success with our Jerome, Idaho, teams and customers, and we are thrilled to make additional investments in this region.' Joining Mr. Maass at the ribbon-cutting ceremony in Jerome were David Faith, chairman of Scoular's board of directors; Laura Wilder, executive director of the Idaho Barley Commission; and Mike Williams, city administrator of Jerome. 'Idaho is the top-producing barley state in the US, growing 37% of the nation's crop in 2021,' Ms. Wilder said. 'Scoular's new facility will bring expanded opportunities for growers, further strengthening Idaho's place as the No. 1 source of consistent, high-quality barley in the US.' Emerge, both traceable and non-GMO, is created through a patent-pending process that concentrates the protein naturally found in whole barley kernels, creating a nutrient-dense ingredient for use in pet food and aquafeed, the company said. The facility is expected to begin commercial production in January. Along with the state of Idaho and city of Jerome, key project partners include the Jerome 20/20 Economic Development Organization, Scott Jackson Trucking, Starr Corp. and Bratney Companies. In August, Scoular began construction on a marine protein processing facility in Warrenton. The plant is expected to be operational by the summer of 2022. The $12 million project is a joint venture with Da Yang Seafoods and Bornstein Seafoods and 'will create a larger supply base for our pet food and aquaculture customers,' Scoular said. Scoular said its new plants in Oregon and Idaho underscore its growing commitment to expand its presence in the pet food and aquaculture ingredient space. The company began operations at its $50 million freeze-dried ingredient production plant in Seward, Neb., in October 2020. This business segment, Petsource by Scoular, develops, procures, freeze-dries and packages whole organ meats and meat analogues specifically for pet food manufacturers. By Arvin Donley

What are the health benefits of AstaOmega Oil for pets
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

What are the health benefits of AstaOmega Oil for pets

The unique advantage of AstaOmega Oil is that all its nutrients come from a single source, the incredible krill, being free from preservatives or additives.Here are 3 things you should know about krill Astaxanthin – a powerful antioxidant A natural and powerful antioxidant, astaxanthin protects all body cells and boosts the immune system. Astaxanthin contains a unique molecular structure due to double bonds in the center and a hydroxyl and keto group on each end. These are responsible for their antioxidant properties. Antioxidants are essential for optimal health of pets, cognition, and longevity by preventing oxidative stress. The astaxanthin found in AstaOmega Oil is natural and both sustainable and traceable. Marine omega-3s - essential fatty acids Omega-3s are important nutrients for keeping pets healthy and can help them maintain a shiny coat. There are many pet foods with plant-based omega-3s, however, pets are not able to convert plant-based omega-3s to EPA and DHA well, and therefore most veterinarians recommend a marine sourced omega-3 supplement. What is the difference between plant-based omega-3 and marine omega-3 These are some of the most important health benefits of having a diet that included marine omega-3s: Heart - EPA and DHA are known to reduce both cardiovascular risk and high blood pressure. Brain - DHA is important for cognitive and behavioral function, and can also diminish the amount of neuronal loss when aging. Liver - Omega-3s improve liver health and function and are well-known for their anti-inflammatory effects. Immune Function - Omega-3s strengthen the immune system by making immune cells more flexible and resistant; they also help the immune system 'switch off' the inflammatory response and inhibit the production of pro-inflammatory components. Proven health benefits The first study on active Alaskan Huskies has shown amazing results. 20 Alaskan Huskies were random divided into two test groups. One group received a supplement with plant-based omega-3s (from flaxseed oil), while the other group received a supplement of marine omega-3s (EPA/DHA, from QRILL Pet AstaOmega Oil). A veterinarian examined the dogs at the start of the study and at 3 and 6 weeks. The objective of this study was to compare the effects of the flaxseed oil to the QRILL Pet AstaOmega Oil on the dogs. We wanted to determine which supplement had the most impact on the Omega-3 Index, which indicates the amount of health-promoting fatty acids present in red blood cell membranes in dogs. What is the Omega-3 Index After 6-weeks, we found out the dogs that received a marine omega-3s supplement of AstaOmega Oil increased their Omega-3 Index by 62%, while the flaxseed oil group decreased by 40%. We concluded that marine omega-3s are a more efficient source of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. A sustainable and traceable marine omega-3 source AstaOmega Oil is sourced from one of the most sustainable fisheries in the world and has guaranteed traceability from sea to product. Antarctic krill is a sustainable marine omega-3 source coming from the pristine waters of the Southern Ocean. A species of tiny but incredible crustaceans, krill has been recognized as a powerful and sustainable ingredient for pet food. by  Ana Dumbravescu - Marketing Manager Qrill Pet 

Alltech releases 2020 Sustainability Report
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Alltech releases 2020 Sustainability Report

Despite the challenges, Alltech believes that agriculture has the greatest potential not only to meet the global demand but to positively impact the future of our planet. The company's bold vision of Working Together for a Planet of Plenty is reflected throughout the pages of the newly released 2020 Alltech Sustainability Report. 'This dawning of a new age in agri-food will require us to continue working together across geographies and industries to create a more sustainable future,' said Dr. Mark Lyons, president and CEO of Alltech. 'Agriculture has made extraordinary strides in sustainable production, but the next few decades will be crucial. Our sustainability report demonstrates our ongoing commitment to providing smarter, more sustainable solutions for producers while harnessing the power of collaboration and human ingenuity to create a more promising future.' While Alltech's Planet of Plenty vision looks toward the future, it's also rooted in long-held values. In 1989, Alltech founder Dr. Pearse Lyons committed to a guiding ACE principle, requiring that the company's endeavors prioritize the safety and well-being of the Animal, the Consumer and the Environment. Today, Alltech's vision for a Planet of Plenty propels its founding ACE principle into a new world of possibility. In 2019, Alltech became a signatory of the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) and committed to nine of the 17 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including zero hunger, good health and well-being, quality education, gender equality, decent work and economic growth, climate action, life below the water, life on land and partnerships for the goals. Throughout the 2020 Alltech Sustainability Report, each of the company's contributions is accompanied by the corresponding UNGC principles and SDG goals. 'We compiled our report with input from our teams across the globe,' said David Butler, head of sustainability at Alltech. 'I am excited by the level of energy and enthusiasm shown by our colleagues as they explore the positive impact of their work. Their determination reveals that sustainability is reflected not only in our core business but also within our culture. That purpose-driven engagement will help guide our success for years to come.' The report further details how Alltech's Planet of Plenty Partnerships are creating opportunities for advancing the implementation of science-led sustainable practices that improve profitability and animal and environmental welfare. 'This year has affirmed the vital importance of collaboration, trusting our scientific experts and welcoming diverse perspectives,' said Dr. Mark Lyons. 'Together, instead of leaving a footprint, we can leave a legacy.' Click Here to read the 2020 Alltech Sustainability Report. by ALL Pet Food

Kemin Industries celebrates 25 years of rosemary innovation
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

Kemin Industries celebrates 25 years of rosemary innovation

Kemin Industries, a global ingredient manufacturer that strives to sustainably transform the quality of life every day for 80 percent of the world with its products and services, is celebrating 25 years of growing its proprietary line of rosemary to create sustainable solutions for foods. Kemin pioneered the use of rosemary molecules in ingredients in the late 1990s and has since established itself as a leader in the market. 'The Kemin team is incredibly excited to celebrate this major milestone, and we are proud to offer our partners solutions that come from our sustainable, vertically integrated rosemary program,' said Dr. John Greaves, Vice President of Specialty Crops, Kemin Industries. 'Being one of the first suppliers in the marketplace, we have dramatically evolved our offerings and continuously improved the production of these specialty crops over the last 25 years.' Today, rosemary is recognized alongside tocopherols as a major component in maintaining natural freshness and flavor. As one of the largest vertically integrated producers of sustainably grown rosemary, Kemin offers a well-tracked supply chain and can trace its crops from cuttings to final product. The company's proprietary rosemary is formulated into effective clean-label solutions to help keep food fresher, safer and more flavorful. Prior to the innovation and initial investment by Kemin in developing its own vertically integrated rosemary program, the plant was mainly wild harvested in southern Europe and North Africa. 'We quickly realized wild harvesting was not sustainable, and we needed to put a rosemary cropping system in place to improve biomass through plant breeding. Kemin developed one of the first rosemary-breeding programs, which took the plant from a Mediterranean evergreen shrub to a high-performance 'phytochemical manufacturing plant',' said Greaves. 'Our scientists analyzed and selected the most potent lines of rosemary from around the globe,' said Greaves. 'Then, our team used conventional plant-breeding methods to begin a continuous improvement program, which resulted in one of the largest collections of rosemary in the world.' Demand for products with simple labels and natural ingredients has skyrocketed, and sustainability in ingredients continues to drive growth. According to Mintel, 42 percent of U.S. consumers feel a strong sense of responsibility to live more sustainably. Kemin rosemary crops are CSCS Sustainably Grown® certified by SCS Global, a certification that recognizes leadership in environmental stewardship, social responsibility and economic stability. 'As we look to the future, Kemin continues to invest in innovation as our scientists and growers work together to discover new molecules for new natural antioxidants,' said Greaves. 'We are actively developing new botanical sources of antioxidant molecules to complement rosemary-based formulations and are continually working with extraction and formulation methods to produce the most effective rosemary products.' To learn more about the Kemin portfolio of natural ingredient solutions to delay food oxidation, extend shelf life and protect color, click HERE.   Source: Kemin Industries

Optimal nutrition for dogs and cats
Formulation
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4+ MIN

Optimal nutrition for dogs and cats

By Erika Stasieniuk

Unlike farm animals, pet nutrition must follow a nutritional concept beyond the minimum and functional, remaining within the optimal range, according to Figure 1. However, this range allows many variations for each formulation, being able to cover a very wide diversity of diets, creating products with variations in ingredients and even nutrients, but which in the end achieve optimal health   Figure 1- Graph that represents the dose-response curve of nutrient consumption.   Based on the figure above, we can imagine where the products of the main commercial categories that exist today in pet food fit: economy, premium and super premium. Inexpensive rations present the nutrients on the optimal area curve, but closer to the minimum. Premium products, on the other hand, move further towards the highest point of the curve. The super premium portions, meanwhile, are at the highest point of the graph without reaching the "excess" area. As the trend is always to develop superior quality products, the formulator must be aware of the balance between the great and the exaggerated of nutritional fashions so as not to reach excesses that compromise the health of dogs and cats. Thus, the new trend is to satisfy the essential nutrient needs in an optimal way for each species and, together, to present products with functional and nutraceutical properties that promote beneficial effects on health, guaranteeing the customer the longevity of their pet.   We mention three points that the knowledgeable formulator must add to diets to achieve optimal nutrition:   1) INTESTINAL HEALTH The gastrointestinal microbiota plays an important role in animal health. Prebiotics and probiotics are food additives capable of maintaining an adequate balance of the microbiota (Bielecka et al., 2002). Several studies have shown beneficial effects on the health of dogs and cats, such as improvement in the consistency and smell of feces, regulation of the immune system, prevention and improvement in cases of diarrhea and anti-inflammatory and regulatory effects in the intestine in diseases of the gastrointestinal tract. (Vasconcelos et al., 2018). Microorganisms used as probiotics are usually non-pathogenic components of the normal microbiota, such as lactic acid bacteria (major genera Lactococcus, Lactobacillus, Streptococcus, Bifidobacterium, and Enterococci). In general, the recommendation is to incorporate probiotics after extrusion of the food, due to the high temperature used in the process. However, we know that with the advancement of research and product development, probiotics for industrial use, capable of withstanding the heat of extrusion, are coming to the market. Prebiotics, for their part, are non-digestible nutritional ingredients that act selectively on the microflora, stimulating the growth and activity of one or more beneficial intestinal bacteria (ANFALPET, 2010). They can be obtained naturally in the seeds and roots of some vegetables such as chicory, beets, artichokes, asparagus, barley, rye, soybeans, chickpeas and lupine. The most common forms available on the market are Saccharomyces cerevisiae cell walls or yeast cell walls or mannanoligosaccharides (MOS), which together with fructooligosaccharides (FOS), include inulin and oligofructose.   2) ANTIOXIDANT REINFORCEMENT As with food, oxidation reactions also occur in the cells of living tissues. In this process, radicals with unpaired electrons are formed in the last layer that present intense chemical reactivity, forming so-called free radicals. They are normally produced to neutralize unwanted attacks on the body, such as bacteria and viruses, but when they are in excess and / or are not neutralized, they can often cause irrecoverable damage to membranes, DNA and enzymes (Borges et al., 2003). Thus, the role of antioxidants in the diet came to have a broader connotation and, when they are present or incorporated in food, they can be effective in combating the formation of free radicals in animal tissues (Borges et al., 2003) . The most widely used antioxidants have been alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E), beta-carotene (precursor of vitamin A), ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and polyphenols.   3) INFLAMMATION CONTROL Fatty acids are capable of attenuating the effects of the inflammatory process by reducing the synthesis of eicosanoids and inflammatory cytokines. The fatty acids linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) cannot be synthesized in sufficient quantities by the body, so they must be provided through the diet. In some species, the fatty acids EPA and DHA can be synthesized from linolenic acid, but dogs and cats have a limited ability to carry out this conversion. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance that they are provided in the diet. The profile of these fatty acids in a diet can be changed according to the source of fat provided: animal tissues, such as those of marine animals that feed on algae and have high concentrations of DHA in their tissues, while sources of plant origin have higher concentrations of ALA in its constitution. Fish oil, for example, is a great source of EPA and DHA.   BIBLIOGRAPHIC REFERENCES: ANFALPET - Manual do Programa Integrado de Qualidade Pet. 2010. 612p. BORGES, F. M. O., SALGARELLO, R. M., GURIAN, T. M. Recentes avanços na nutrição de cães e gatos. In: SIMPÓSIO SOBRE NUTRIÇÃO DE ANIMAIS DE ESTIMAÇÃO, 3, 2003 São Paulo. Anais... Campinas, p. 21-60, 2003. BIELECKA, M.; BIEDRZYCKA, E.; MAJKOWSKA, A. Selection of probiotics and prebiotics for synbiotics and confirmation of their in vivo effectiveness. Food Res. Int., Amsterdam, v.35, n.2/3, p.125-131, 2002 GROSS, K. L.; YAMKA, R. M.; KHOO, C.; FRIESEN, K. G.; JEWELL, D. E.; SCHOENHERR, W. D.; DEBRAEKELEER, J.; ZICKER, S. C. Macronutrients. In: HAND, M. S.; THATCHER, C. D.; REMILLARD, R. L.; ROUDEBUSH, P.; NOVOTNY, B. J. (Ed.). Small Animal Clinical Nutrition. 5 ed. Topeka, EUA: Mark Moris Institute, 2010. p 49-105. VASCONCELOS, S. S. R. S. L.; Uso de probióticos manipulados e seus efeitos na saúde de cães e gatos: uma revisão de literatura. João Pessoa, 2018.   Source: All Pet Food

Animal Flours: Alternatives to Enhance formulations for Dogs and Cats Foods
Formulation
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10+ MIN

Animal Flours: Alternatives to Enhance formulations for Dogs and Cats Foods

Between 2013 and 2018, there was an increase of almost 7 million domestic animals in Brazil, according to IBGE and the Instituto Pet Brasil. This report also revealed the preference of families for dogs, there are more than 54 million in all regions of the country. However, the number of cats was the one that grew the most in the period studied, there were more than 23 million pets in 2018. The significant growth of the domestic animal population in Brazil supports the growth of the PET product market, which, in 2018 alone, moved more than 34,000 billion Brazilian reais. More than R $ 15 billion was spent on food alone! The opportunity for pet food producers to win a share of this market is very clear. But just as important as selling is offering products that ensure the quality of pet food from consumers willing to show their love by spending more and more on animals. To develop and deliver adequate rations for the health and well-being of PET, all the care is little. Producers must know the nutritional needs of each species and choose the best ingredients so that their products are a balanced diet option for animals, since there are several composition options such as beef, chicken, pork, fish, cereals, vegetables, vitamins and minerals. Next, we are going to read more about the nutrition of dogs and cats and how their nutrient demands must be considered for the correct formulation of the rations.   The nutritional needs of dogs Like all pets, dogs need a balanced diet to lead healthier lives. Here are the essential components of the diet of these pets. Proteins: have the function of building muscle tissue, transporting substances and communication between organs, and strengthening the immune system. They can be of plant or animal origin, the latter of high biological value. While they are puppies, dogs need to grow. In their later years, when they tend to lose muscle mass, they need to make up for this loss. Therefore, in these phases, the diet must be rich in protein to respond to these needs of the animal. Still, according to the guide "Your dog's nutritional needs" produced by the National Research Council (NRC), puppies up to 5 kg should consume about 56 g of protein each day. For adult dogs, with a body mass of about 15 kg, the recommendation is that they consume 25 g of protein. For elderly dogs, the NRC indicates a formulation with higher protein content, around 75g of protein per 1000 kcal. Fats: responsible for maintaining healthy skin and coat, helping brain and vision development, and playing an important role in the structural function of cells. Puppies fed low-fat diets develop thick, dry fur and skin and are more vulnerable to infection. The NRC guidance also reveals that dogs with a body mass of up to 15kg should consume 14g of fat daily. In the case of older dogs, whose metabolisms are less efficient, lower calorie diets and lower fat content are essential to prevent obesity, a recurring problem in this age group of the animal. Animal oils such as poultry oils and pork fat - which use fresh raw material - are great sources of lipids for canine formulations. Being of animal origin, they have a high digestibility and palatability, in addition to guaranteeing essential fatty acids for the development of the pet. Carbohydrates: they are the main source of energy in dog food. This rule applies to all stages of development of the animal. In terms of energy, the NRC guide says that puppies with body mass up to 5 kg need 990 kcal / day. Active adult dogs with a body mass of approximately 20 kg need 1353 kcal / day and active elderly dogs with a body mass of 20 kg need 1093 kcal / day. Fibers: guarantee a good functioning of the intestine. In special cases, abundant fibers should be part of the diet, as is the case in dogs with constipation problems. In general, the NRC reports that the daily diet of an adult dog can contain up to 50% carbohydrates of the total mass of the food, including between 2.5 and 4.5% fiber. A minimum of about 5.5% of the diet should come from fat and 10% from protein. Vitamins: they are related to the health of vision, skin, antioxidant activity, clotting factors, among others. According to the guide, some vitamins are necessary in the diet of dogs, such as vitamins A (379 µg), D (3.4 µg), E (8 mg) and thiamine (0.56 mg). Vitamin A is directly related to the prevention of diseases in the vision and respiratory diseases and with an increased susceptibility to infections. Dogs fed diets lacking in vitamin E show signs of skeletal muscle deterioration, reproductive failure, and retinal degeneration. Thiamine deficiency can lead to brain damage and other neurological abnormalities. In addition, vitamin K is responsible for blood clotting, and the B-complex vitamins are involved in the activation of ions and the synthesis of neural tissue. Minerals: participate in metabolic reactions, nerve impulses, muscle contraction and promote healthy bones and teeth. According to the NRC, calcium (1.0 g) and phosphorus (0.75 g) are essential for strong bones and teeth. The guide describes that dogs need magnesium (150 mg), potassium (1.0 g) and sodium (200 mg) for the transmission of nerve impulses, muscle contraction and cell signaling. In addition, the NRC notes that many minerals that are present in only small amounts in the body, including selenium (90 µg) and copper (1.5 mg), act as auxiliaries in a wide variety of enzymatic reactions. A calcium deficiency in the diet can result in severe bone loss, skeletal abnormalities, and pathological fractures. Excess mineral, on the other hand, can also cause skeletal abnormalities, especially in large puppies.   Cats Cats are carnivorous animals, so most of the nutrients they need are of animal origin. Below we highlight the composition of the ideal diet for domestic cats. Proteins: provide essential amino acids for various vital functions, such as the synthesis of antibodies, enzymes (which regulate numerous metabolic functions), hormones, tissues, as well as providing a source of energy and promoting an appropriate pH balance for the body of these animals. Protein raw materials of animal origin are more digestible for cats, such as poultry, cattle, pork, fish and eggs. These sources have high-quality complete proteins, capable of supplying all the essential amino acids. Taurine, for example, is an essential amino acid for cats, the minimum daily requirement is between 35 and 56 mg for an adult cat. This amino acid helps prevent eye and heart disease. According to the 'Your Cat's Nutritional Needs' guide prepared by the National Research Council (NRC), 10g of protein / day is recommended for kittens with approximately 800g of body mass. For adult cats with a body mass of around 4 kg, 12.5 g / day of protein is recommended. Fat: it is involved in cell integrity since it is an essential part of plasma membranes. In addition to participating in metabolic regulation, they add shine to the animal's coat. In addition, fats improve the taste and texture of food, making it tastier and more attractive. Among the unsaturated fatty acids, some polyunsaturated are characterized by being essential for the health of cats, such as those of the omega 3 family. According to the guide, 4 g / day of total fat is recommended in the diet of kittens with a body mass of about 800 g. For adult cats with a body mass of about 4 kg, 5.5 g / day of total fat is recommended. Carbohydrates: they are the main source of energy in dog food. Apparently, they are not essential in the diet. When there is adequate protein and fat content in their diet, they provide glycerol and glycogen amino acids for the animal to obtain the necessary energy. This is one of the reasons that cats are classified as true carnivores. Minerals: are involved in almost all physiological reactions in cats. They act in the formation of enzymes, the pH balance, the absorption of nutrients, the transport of oxygen, among other functions. Vitamins: participate in metabolic regulation and normal growth of animals. Some of them also have other functions, such as the prevention of night blindness (vitamin A) and antioxidants (vitamin E). The daily recommendation of the NRC guide, mainly includes vitamins A (63 µg), D (0.4 µg), E (2.5 mg), K (82 µg), B1 (0.33 mg), riboflavin ( 0.27 mg), B6 ​​(0.16 mg), B12 (1.4 µg), among others.   Animal Flours to enrich pet food As we have seen before, an important part of the feed for dogs and cats is of animal origin, hence the importance of choosing the raw material well to produce a quality food. That is, industrialized from ingredients that, in fact, satisfy the specific needs of nutrients to supply the different physiological states of pets. An important aspect for making decisions about ingredients is the identification of the nature of the inputs used and their relative digestibility and bioavailability. In the same way, we must take into account contamination by microorganisms such as Salmonella ssp and metabolites produced by fungi such as mycotoxins, which are very harmful. For all these reasons, raw materials of animal origin are the most suitable to enrich the formulation of feed, due to their high content of digestible proteins, the balanced presence of essential amino acids and the absence of anti-nutritional factors. Next, we will present some of these raw materials, animal meals that are recommended to compose high quality food for dogs and cats.   Flour from bird viscera Meal from poultry viscera is produced by cooking, pressing and grinding the viscera, offal, cartilage and pieces of meat. According to a study by Greg Aldrich, published in Petfood Industry, meals made from chicken entrails and those produced exclusively with chicken meat have the same nutritional value for dogs and cats. In other research, published on Engormix, Dr. Greg found that meat meal and chicken offal are highly digestible by cats and dogs, contain the necessary essential amino acids, and have no anti-nutritional factors. In the same analysis it was concluded that flours, especially for cats, should contain less than 14% and 11.5% ash, for meat and chicken offal respectively. He also warned that they are susceptible to oxidation. Therefore, it is important to take into account the levels of peroxide and acidity when composing the food. Rather than feeding pets, Greg Aldrich states that poultry fat is well accepted by pets as its taste is preferable to other sources of fat. Developed with an eye on all these aspects, Bird Viscera Flour (Low Ash) is, therefore, a great alternative for the composition of food for dogs and cats. After all, in addition to its high palatability and digestibility, it contains a lower ash content and a higher crude protein content (73%), essential for the growth of pets.   Chicharrón meal Another animal meal that stands out as an alternative for its application in dog food is Chicharrón meal. This ingredient is produced through the cooking, pressing and grinding the skin and the pork mask in natura and chicharrones. Chicharrón meal is produced with fresh and high quality raw materials, which are not considered by-products of the pig supply. It is also a rich source of protein, at least 80%, and essential amino acids. It is worth mentioning that this flour has a high palatability and digestibility, with a great consistency, little mineral matter and is naturally pleasant and attractive to the taste of animals. Thus, Chicharrón meal is also a good alternative for the composition of dog and cat food.   Feather Flour Feather meal is another ingredient that can be used in the industrialization of food for dogs and cats. A great advantage of this ingredient is the high concentration of protein, at least 80%. Precisely for this reason, it is used in pet food, increasing the protein content. The flour is developed so that it does not present antinutritional factors, reducing the chances of an allergic reaction in the animal, which is proven by an article by Anton Beynen, published in All About Feed. Beynen revealed that dry foods with 14% feather meal in their composition are well accepted by dogs. To take advantage of all the nutritional qualities of Feather Meal in the manufacture of feed, it is important to remember the importance of choosing reliable suppliers that maintain quality processes, using clean and fresh feathers obtained in the poultry supply production chain and with low mineral content.   Feather meal and blood Feather and blood meal can also be used in feed for dogs and cats, because in addition to presenting all the advantages of feather meal, blood improves palatability, increases the balance of amino acids and, according to a study published in the Revista Brasileira de Zootecnia makes them reach satiety more quickly. Blood also enriches the formulation of pet food, because proteins such as plasma and hemoglobin are very important to improve the regulatory functions of metabolism, such as absorption, transport and synthesis of nutrients. Feather and Blood Flour is an interesting alternative from a nutritional point of view and, like the others, it must be purchased from a reputable supplier so as not to compromise the health and quality of life of pets.   Conclution There is no doubt that the health and well-being of dogs and cats comes first when the consumer chooses the food. Therefore, the manufacturer cannot hesitate to choose the most nutritious ingredients to produce a feed that truly meets the needs of the animals. To do this, knowing each of these flours and finding trusted suppliers is a very important step in the development of suitable feed. Since only by choosing quality inputs, the producer will be guaranteed the delivery of feed containing highly digestible and palatable nutrients, which ensure growth, healthy development and quality of life of the animals.   Source: BRF Ingredients

The most important nutrient for our pets: Water
Formulation
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9+ MIN

The most important nutrient for our pets: Water

By Luis Miguel Gómez Osorio

Excess consumption of water may also be indicating some pathology or collateral effects of some medication as part of a treatment, among other causes. There are also some dogs and cats that are not good 'water drinkers' and their consumption should be encouraged to avoid severe dehydration that ends the life of the pet. This article summarizes the importance of water for the physiological functions of dogs and cats and its contribution to homeostasis, the main causes that alter its consumption, quantities that should be supplied according to the physiological state and activity level and some recommendations for stimulate the consumption of this important nutrient.   Definition Chemically, water is the combination of hydrogen and oxygen, which are united at a rate of 2 hydrogen atoms and one oxygen (H2O). Water is vital for life and is considered the most important nutrient of all (1). Water is the most abundant component in the animal's body, varying between 40 to 80% of its total body weight. The percentage of water varies between species, condition and age. Generally, lean body mass contains between 70-80% water and 20-25% protein, while adipose tissue contains 10-15% water and 75-80% fat. The younger the animals contain more body water and the overweight and / or obese animals have less water in their body compared to non-overweight animals. Once the animals mature, they require proportionally less water per unit of body weight and therefore have a lower urinary water loss. Furthermore, adults have less surface area per unit of body weight resulting in less evaporation from the skin.   Function Water is an essential nutrient, but perhaps the least discussed with respect to the other dietary requirements such as protein, energy, vitamins, etc. Contradictorily, it is the nutrient that is required in the greatest quantity (Figure 1). Water is offered daily separately from food and is also included in it, as we must not forget that food contains water and is not 100% dry matter. In addition, when water is supplied in sufficient quantity, healthy cats and dogs can self-regulate their consumption and satisfy their nutritional needs. However, its contribution as a nutrient to the total diet is largely ignored, unaware that it is a vital ingredient for the functioning of body cells and body fluid. The functions of water in pets are quite a few, but among the most important, it can be mentioned: it is a solvent for most extra and intracellular chemical processes, the main component of tissues and fluids, the main component of blood, a facilitator for digestion and absorption of nutrients, thermoregulation, excretion of waste in urine and feces, moistening of the lungs, protects and lubricates internal organs such as joints and supports the functioning of the nervous system. Figure 1. The six basic nutrients. Carbohydrates, fats and proteins are the nutrients from which energy comes, but they also serve as structural components. Kg: kilograms, d: day, mcg: micrograms, mg: milligrams, EAA: essential amino acids.   Regulation of water consumption in dogs and cats The loss of water in both dogs and cats occurs mainly as a function of respiration, urine production and feces. While water is constantly being lost throughout the day, access to water is periodic. The sensation of thirst is correlated with the body water content and the osmolality (amount of particles dissolved in a liquid) of the plasma, although this sensation cannot be stimulated unless there is a slight degree of dehydration.   How much water should a dog drink per day? A simple rule that we could easily memorize would be one ounce per pound of the dog's weight. That is, almost 30 mL of water for almost 454 g of the animal's weight. A dog weighing 4.5 kg should drink 300 mL of water per day (4). However, this may vary with the physiological state, activity level or the presence of some pathologies. Also, dogs that consume kibbles drink more water than those that include canned or semi-moist foods in their diet. Although there are water requirements for dogs and cats, to date the optimal volume of water consumption or the impact that hydration may have on the health of our pets is not known with a high level of precision. Additionally, all nutritional recommendations for pet food declare that there must always be fresh water available at will, seeking a state of eu-hydration (hydration in optimal balance). Daily water consumption requirements have traditionally been reported in mL / kg (milliliters per kilogram) of body weight (PC), mL / kg of dry matter consumed and the relationship between water and calorie consumption measured as mL / kcal (kilocalories ) of metabolizable energy (ME) consumed. All these methods rely on water from different sources such as food moisture, direct water consumption and metabolic water. In general, the water-calorie intake rate for healthy dogs has been estimated at 1.0: 1.0 mL water: kcal of ME. However, this metric can change dramatically over time (weeks to months) with different levels of physical activity such as exercise or work while maintaining the same CP. However, some exceptions have been reported for dogs exercising long-distance runs in extremely cold climates. As a general rule, a sport dog, its water requirements are 2.4: 1.0 mL water: kcal of ME. It has recently been reported in humans that small changes in body hydration status (less than 2%) impact cognitive status, mood and performance during exercise. It has been speculated that, in working dogs, mild dehydration may affect tasks such as search and rescue of people, detection of narcotics and explosives, hunting and sports, and biomedical detection services including COVID19-positive patients (6). There is an imminent need to know much better the amount of water that can potentiate the level of hydration for pets and working dogs in different stages such as rest and work-related tasks, ensuring optimal health and performance. Even when the activity is between little and moderate, the hydration status is not the same during the day due to the routines of dogs and cats, sometimes generating states of hypohydration with respective increases in serum and urinary osmolality just from minutes to hours. Some diseases have been associated with dehydration states such as hyperglycemia, diabetes progression, high risk of chronic kidney disease, recurrence of kidney stones, and possibly a high contribution to hypertension and lower urinary tract disease.   How much water should a cat drink per day? Compared to dogs, cats drink less water. In general, an adult cat consumes between 150 mL and 300 mL ounces of water per day, depending on size, activity level, type of food, and other factors such as health and environmental temperature. If the cat is fed kibble, its water consumption will be closer to 300 mL per day and if it is fed canned food, it will be closer to 150 mL per day. Cats may be drinking too much water, which can be detected by a greater number of visits per day to the litter box or because the cat is passing through the fountain several times a day or playing with it already empty. The causes that make the cat drink too much water are the same as dogs, however, the most common are: kidney disease, diabetes, cancer and hyperthyroidism. If you notice a large amount of urine in the litter box or even see urine in the water container, you should immediately consult your veterinarian.   How to know if the pet is consuming enough water? Checking the pet's hydration status is very important, which is evidenced by a good elasticity of the skin, (if the skin is pulled it immediately returns to its place), pink and moist gums, bright eyes and good levels of energy. The urine of a properly hydrated dog or cat is normally odorless and pale yellow or clear. A dehydrated cat or dog is lethargic, their eyes may be sunken or look sad, their saliva is thick, their gums are dark and dry, and their skin elasticity is reduced. Urine has a strong, dark yellow odor. However, in dogs and cats with kidney disease the urine may be light yellow.   Water quality Salinity, nitrates and nitrites, toxic organic and inorganic chemicals, and microbial contamination can affect water quality. Routine measurements of the water and the concentration of all its dissolved components (known as TDS or total dissolved solids) should be carried out. Salinity (salt content in water) is an indicator of its ionic capacity and is closely related to TDS. The water must contain less than 5,000 parts per million (ppm) or mg / L of TDS. However, this data has been extrapolated from birds and pigs and it is generally accepted that the water that our pets should drink should not be greater than 500 ppm, which has been taken from humans (US EPA, 1976). Other aspects of water such as hardness (sum of calcium and magnesium salts in relation to calcium carbonate) have little effect on the well-being of the pet. High levels of Mg in drinking water in cats are closely related to cases of urolithiasis, however, the amount consumed in water is negligible compared to that ingested through food (up to 10,000 times the difference). Cats susceptible to urolithiasis may benefit from drinking distilled water more than water that has been softened with sodium chloride.   Why is your dog thirstier than usual? Dogs should normally consume 13.3 mL of water for every kg of live weight. Puppies and lactating females can consume more water. Several things can affect the amount of water dogs drink, including weather and activity level. However, if your pet drinks a larger amount of water without explanation, it may be indicative of a health problem. Among the most frequent causes of increased water consumption can be mentioned. Dehydration: hot days, days of high activity, illness and infection, can cause dehydration in dogs and activate the active search for water to drink. In addition to signs of being thirsty, the pet may also show other signs such as lethargy, dry tongue and gums, and thick saliva. Dehydration can quickly become life threatening and if severe dehydration is suspected the dog should be taken to the vet immediately. However, if it is moderate dehydration, a teaspoon of water can be given in small breed dogs and 2 teaspoons in large breed dogs every 10 minutes for a minimum of 6 hours. Do not allow the dog to have access to large amounts of water at will when dehydrated, because drinking large amounts can cause vomiting. Illness: Several pathologies can cause excessive thirst or dehydration, including diabetes, Cushing's syndrome, cancer, diarrhea, fever, infection, kidney disease, liver disease, among others. Sometimes it is not the pathology itself that causes dehydration but the medications used to treat them. The veterinarian should be inquired about the adverse effects of the medications and if they cause dehydration, lower doses could be tried. Among the medications that can generate excessive thirst in dogs can be mentioned: prednisone, furosemide, phenobarbital, etc. Diet: A dry diet, which corresponds to a food between 5-10% humidity, can cause thirst and slight dehydration in the animal. High sodium content can trigger the dog to drink more water. High amounts of salt can be poisonous to dogs and the most characteristic signs of this can be tremors, diarrhea, depression and vomiting. Some sources of fiber used in food may be altering the amount of water consumed in dogs and cats.   How to stimulate water consumption in dogs and cats Some cats and dogs are not good water drinkers even if all the water is needed. Cats in particular are very notorious for this condition. For this reason, these suggestions should be taken into account, which can help stimulate the consumption of water in both dogs and cats and thus avoid dehydration. For cats: 1. Try to have a water source. Some cats do not like water in a container and instead prefer moving water. In general for cats and dogs: 1. Serve the water at room temperature and not cold. 2. Wash the fountain frequently and make sure the water is fresh and clean daily. 3. Change the location of the fountain, some cats are very particular and like to have the fountain near their bed or in the resting area or where the cat does not walk frequently. Do not put the waterer near the litter box. 4. Leave several drinking fountains in different areas so that the animals can drink calmly. 5. Flavor the water with small amounts of tuna juice, bone or chicken broth, or even liver. Make sure to wash the containers of the water that were flavored well. 6. Treat your pet to a snack after he drinks water. 7. Add water to food, or supplement pet with semi-moist food. 8. Offer dogs flavored popsicles.   Final Recommendations It is relatively easy to tell that your pet is thirsty or has an unusual change in water consumption by the amount of water served in his cup. Therefore, the water bowl should be filled routinely at the same time of day to notice any changes. Fill it to the same level every day and pay attention to how much you take and how much you leave in the drinker each day. Water is critical to your pet's health and well-being, never restrain your dog from the water. If you are concerned that your dog is drinking too much water, or not enough, do not hesitate and consult your trusted veterinarian.   Source: All Pet Food

Cruciferous vegetables in Pet Food formulas
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

Cruciferous vegetables in Pet Food formulas

Pet food manufacturers are in a constant bid to find the best formula: the healthiest, the tastiest, the most convenient ... In this article, we discuss cruciferous vegetables that are incorporated into Pet Food formulas in search of a healthier food.   First: what vegetables are cruciferous? Cruciferous vegetables are the vegetables of the Brassicaceae family, a family of dicotyledonous angiosperms made up of a monophyletic group with 372 genera and 4,060 accepted species. The best known and most consumed are cauliflower, kale, cabbage, watercress, broccoli and Brussels cabbage, among others. Vegetables in the cruciferous family are known as "super vegetables": they contain vitamins, fibers and phytochemicals that help the human immune system fight disease. In fact, it is recommended for human consumption several times a week. Now, as we have already seen in previous articles that everything that is imposed on humans is imposed, sooner rather than later, in the lifestyle of pets, and this trend is no exception: the consumption of vegetables and the replacement of animal meat is on the rise.   Are cruciferous vegetables also good for Pets? The answer is yes: the vegetables in this family are healthy, safe and nutritious to include in pet food formulas. Broccoli, for example, is packed with fiber, which helps with digestion and weight control; It contains many vitamins (A, B, C, D, E and K) that help promote the general well-being of the animal and lutein, a nutrient that promotes eye and cardiovascular health. What's more: Cabbage, for its part, is the one with the highest amount of vitamin A. Brussels sprouts and broccoli contain high levels of folic acid and omega-3s. Brussels sprouts have the highest amount of vitamin A, C, K and B complex vitamins. Kale is high in fiber, vitamin K and E, iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium, and antioxidants. 'You have to follow the advice of the grandmother: everything in moderation! Crucifers are warrior vegetables that prevent cancer; Dogs should not be denied the benefits of indole-3-carbinol found in these foods, but they should be used in moderation, and the crucifers should be made from organic soils to avoid contamination with thallium by environmental pollutants. " Dr. Karen Becker, expert in Comprehensive Veterinary Medicine   Benefits of incorporating cruciferous vegetables into the Pet Food formula • Prevention of oxidative stress: Thanks to the antioxidants in these vegetables, oxidative stress in pets can be reduced or prevented, which occurs when there is an imbalance of free radicals and antioxidants in the animal's body. Free radicals are unstable molecules with an odd number of electrons. We could say that they are a natural "by-product" of the daily processes of the body's functioning, although they are also caused by environmental toxins such as pollution and smoke. To try to stabilize, free radicals interact with other molecules, which can damage proteins, DNA, and other cells. • Carotenoid intake: Carotenoids are plant pigments rich in antioxidants that protect dogs from free radicals. Kale, for example, contains three main carotenoids: lutein, zeaxanthin, and beta-carotene, a provitamin A carotenoid, that is, it converts into vitamin A upon entering a dog's body, and benefits the skin, coat, and endings muscular and nervous. Lutein and zeaxanthin are beneficial to the health of the retina of the eye, and related research claims that they help prevent age-related macular degeneration (AMD), cataracts, and diabetic retinopathy, among other conditions. Studies show that lutein and zeaxanthin improve cardiovascular health. Lutein and zeaxanthin also help increase levels of glutathione, an antioxidant produced in canine cells that is involved in detoxifying the liver. In fact, low glutathione can cause up to 45% of liver disease in dogs. This antioxidant participates in various processes, such as stress, aging, and protection against environmental toxins, and cannot be easily replaced. • Intake of flavonoids: like carotenoids, flavonoids are plant pigments found in fruits and vegetables. They are powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories, with the two most common being quercetin and kaempferol. Quercetin is known for its ability to fight allergies, because it is also an antihistamine. For its part, kaempferol helps reduce inflammation, improves cardiovascular health, protects the brain, and controls diabetes. Both flavonoids also protect against cancer. 'Kale is rich in some minerals that, compared to AAFCO or FEDIAF standards, are in short supply in many meat-based diets. So the choice often comes down to using moderate amounts of kale and similar vegetables, finding other foods that provide the minerals, adding mineral supplements, or having a diet that may be deficient in some important minerals. Mineral-rich vegetables reduce the amount of supplements we need to add to meet standards. " Steve Brown, expert in Pet Nutrition.   Sumary Vegetables are once again making their way into pet food. In this case, we can affirm that the incorporation of cruciferous vegetables into pet food formulas for dogs is positive; However, certain precautions must be taken, such as, for example, that the vegetables are grown in organic soils or that they do not exceed 10% of what the animal's diet will be. It will be crucial to deepen the research and tests in our sector of the industry to be able to include the right measure of these vegetables with total safety in the pet food formulas that are committed to healthy, nourished animals and at the forefront of what their human owners seek. Did you know all the benefits of these vegetables? Let us know!   Source: All Pet Food

What are Microalgae and what are its benefits for Pets
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

What are Microalgae and what are its benefits for Pets

The Pet Food Industry is in a boom and growth, due to all the changes and processes that speed up after 2020. Pet owners no longer want the cheapest food, on the contrary, they choose the food that provides increased nutrition, health and wellness to your best four-legged friends. In this article we will tell you what microalgae are, Pet Foods being used and benefits.   What are microalgae? Microalgae are photosynthetic, polyphyletic and eukaryotic unicellular aquatic organisms, which can grow autotrophically (they synthesize all essential substances for their metabolism from inorganic substances and do not need other living beings) or heterotrophic (they feed on other carbon sources organic, mainly plant or animal matter). They are generally highly efficient in fixing CO2 (the conversion of inorganic carbon into organic compounds) and in using solar energy to produce biomass. They grow and develop in open pond or closed tank systems.   What are they used for? Currently, microalgae are used mainly as additives, both in balanced food and in supplements or snacks in pet food for Dogs and Cats.   What are the main benefits for Pet Food? Microalgae are a great source of protein, fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and fiber. They contribute: Essential nutrients, such as proteins, fatty acids, antioxidants, vitamins, fiber and minerals (phosphorus, iron, zinc and magnesium, among others). Superior quality nutrition, as it is a natural product, free of metals, pesticides, microbes and other contaminants. An improvement in intestinal health: It is proven that microalgae improve intestinal health and activate the immune system of animals. An improvement in general health, since it increases oral hygiene and the shine and strength of the coat. For brain development, some microalgae burn macronutrients as a source of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which contributes to brain development. Its consumption in puppies, pregnant and lactating animals is essential. What are the most common Microalgae used in Pet Food? • Spirulina and Chlorella: These microalgae absorb light. They are currently used in supplements, treats, and whole foods for dogs and cats. Spirulina is very rich in nutrients, and it is said to improve the health of the skin and the immune system, although there are still no studies that have been carried out exclusively to testing this effect in dogs and cats. -In a study carried out in rats, it was found that, thanks to its intake (incorporated in 0.2 to 1.3% in dry food), the production of immunoglobulin A improved. Chlorella is considered to detoxify and purify the body systems of pets, although there is no scientific evidence on its effects yet. -In rodents, oral administration of a chlorella extract (between 0.9% and 2.8%) increased resistance against an intraperitoneal infection with Escherichia coli or Listeria. In addition, a small-scale study suggests that incorporating chlorella powder into dry food by 0.6% can reduce the consequences of canine dermatitis. Currently, products that contain microalgae in their formulas come in the form of: • Seaweed flakes, of different sizes and thicknesses, which are suitable for use in croquettes and chews. • Seaweed powder, an easily mixed powder used for granules and specialty products. • Seaweed paste, easily soluble and used in dry food or feed. • Small croquettes, easy to process once defrosted.   Algae rich in DHA Green algae are characterized by having a higher percentage of DHA than other algae, such as Shizochytrium sp. The intake of Omega 3 EPA and DHA can improve atopic dermatitis and osteoarthritis and some indicators of modular immunity in dogs. -It was found that the inclusion of 0.4% DHA-rich algae in dry foods increases the apparent protein -A small-scale study with 3 dogs fed a diet that included 0.4% DHA-rich algae for 30 days showed that DHA produces beneficial changes in canine electroretinography. However, cognitive tests were performed with elderly dogs and the incorporation of 0.4% dehydrated whole cells of Schizochytrium sp in dry food did not show strong improvements.   The composition of the microalgae most used in Pet Food Dried seaweed, oil and seaweed extract and meal are included in the European catalog of feed materials. Some approximate numbers of the composition of each can be given: • Spirulina and autotrophic chlorella contain 57% crude protein in dry matter, 11% crude fat, 8% ash, 6% crude fiber, and 18% soluble carbohydrates. Dried spirulina and chlorella contain about 1% chlorophylls and 0.1% carotenoids (although these numbers can vary widely). Both algae have a negligible content of EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA, and have a high molecular weight polysaccharide, which comprises approximately 0.75% of the dry weight of microalgae; it differs in composition from a glycosyl group but shares the high solubility in water. • Spirulina also has 10% phycocyanin as a photosynthetic pigment and 2% GLA (gamma-linolenic acid), absent in chlorella. The soluble polysaccharides in spirulina are mainly glucose and rhamnose, but there are some differences between species. • Dried algae rich in DHA contain approximately 22% DHA, and less than 0.6% EPA. • For Schizochytrium sp, the heterotrophic DHA vehicle, the values ​​are: 11% of crude protein in dry matter, 51% of crude fat, 9% of ash, 2% of crude fiber and 27% of soluble carbohydrates.   Summary Currently, the use of microalgae in Latin America is much more widespread exclusively for human consumption, with Brazil being the country with the most companies producing food based on microalgae, followed by Mexico, Peru, Chile, Ecuador and Cuba. While studies and experiments continue to ensure the benefits of these components in Pets, we can prepare and make our own research and conclusions on how to take advantage of these discoveries and create new formulas with more nutrition and benefits to improve the quality of the Pet Food Industry.   Source: All Pet Food

Can Food affect Anxiety in Pets?
Formulation
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5+ MIN

Can Food affect Anxiety in Pets?

By María Candelaria Carbajo

According to one of the most recent studies, 70% of the dogs analyzed suffer from symptoms or have a tendency to suffer from anxiety, a considerably high number. Now, what can be done, from feeding these pets, to reduce their anxiety levels? In this article we will tell you if there is the possibility of reducing stress and anxiety in pets through pet food and how it can be implemented. First: what is it that causes anxiety in dogs? It must be remembered, first, that a dog can suffer from anxiety for several reasons, including: • The separation of the owners from him (even for a working day of 8 hours). • The phobia of loud noises, such as vacuum cleaners, electrical storms or fireworks. If the dog has a trauma that relates to a sound, he will also become more anxious when he hears that noise or a similar one. • Social anxiety, which manifests itself when there are more people than he is used to, and he can react either shyly or violently. In the case of Pets, and especially dogs, they are animals that learn through experience, so you can work on providing experiences with which you learn to deal with those elements that trigger anxiety. Even if a dog had a traumatic situation, the anxiety he feels when listening to, seeing or perceiving a certain element or object can be reversed, even if he needs a little more time and dedication. Now, the big question that concerns us is: Can food have a positive or negative influence on anxiety levels? We have the answer: if a dog's diet is adequate, it can significantly improve and decrease anxiety and stress levels. Rather as a holistic treatment, which contemplates the animal in a comprehensive way and not only from a neurological or psychological point of view, feeding is a factor that can trigger or reduce an animal's anxiety and alertness. What can be done, from the industry, to help reduce anxiety levels? Several studies have tied the effectiveness of some implementations in food. We will list them below for you to evaluate them and, perhaps, produce a new anti-stress pet food formula. Increase L-tryptophan This amino acid generates serotonin, a neurotransmitter especially involved in the control of behaviors such as aggressiveness and anxiety. An increase in dietary levels of L-tryptophan will consequently lead to greater synthesis and utilization of serotonin, resulting in more stable emotional states. This result has been tested in both dogs and cats. L-Tryptophan can be found as an added supplement or in foods like lentils and chickpeas, and its availability depends on competition with other amino acids for blood transport. What causes this amino acid? In simple words: a feeling of relaxation. Increase alpha-Casozepine This supplement arises from the hydrolysis of casein, the main protein in milk. Its function is to enhance GABA, the main inhibitory neurotransmitter of the central nervous system, which participates in: Inhibition of neuronal activity. The management of behavior, cognition and the body's response to stress. The control of fear and anxiety when neuronal overexcitation occurs. Its main effect is similar to that of an anxiolytic, but without the adverse effects, and it is generally used in conjunction with the amino acid L-tryptophan. Low protein content in the formula This can be an alternative to make foods that help reduce anxiety. As we discussed earlier, serotonin is a neurotransmitter that has a relaxing effect. Reducing the consumption of protein impacts the production of serotonin, thus increasing that feeling of calm and / or relaxation. This protein reduction also has a positive impact on the availability and absorption of L-tryptophan. High vitamins content The deficiency of certain vitamins can lead to a psychological imbalance in dogs. You can take into account and evaluate increasing the dose of the following vitamins, if you are evaluating making or improving the formula of the anti-stress food. The lack of vitamin A leads to fatigue and physical and mental anxiety. Vitamin E maintains cognitive abilities in condition and prevents anxiety. Vitamins B1, B6 and B12 contribute to the mental balance of dogs. So far we have seen all supplements that can be incorporated into pet food to enhance its anti-stress function, but are there natural foods that have a "calming" effect on dogs? Yes, there are, and here we tell you the ones that have the greatest benefit: Blueberries: Provide many additional vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which can help reduce the effects of stress. Kale: Swiss chard, spinach, and green leafy vegetables generally contain a high level of vitamins A, B6, C, and K, calcium, magnesium, copper, potassium, and iron. Kale specifically is also a great source of fiber, antioxidants, phytonutrients, and carotenoids. Sweet potatoes: it is one of the healthiest foods in the world. It has antioxidants, vitamin E, A, B6 and C, calcium, iron, folic acid, potassium, copper, thiamine, and iron. Potassium especially helps to maintain fluid and electrolyte balance, which has a positive impact on reducing anxiety. Beef: It is considered a natural antidepressant due to its content of vitamin B, folic acid and pantothenic acid (vitamin B5), which are excellent for controlling anxiety. Vitamin B5, in particular, enables the production of anti-stress hormones in the adrenal gland, which controls the release of cortisol. Turkey: it is a great source of L-tryptophan, the precursor amino acid of serotonin that we presented before. So what can we do from the pet food industry? From our Industry, the best we can do is focusing on creating and continuously improving food formulas adapted to the needs of these pets, which are, unfortunately, more and more. It is also important that, if you already have an anti-stress or anti-anxiety food, you inform the owners and consumers that, although it is a fundamental factor, it is not enough; Once again, food packaging can be used to raise awareness and also generate a more solid, respectable brand that is connected to its consumers. Conclusion A dog food specially formulated to reduce stress levels will not cure an anxious animal. Still, it can help to significantly decrease behavior and other inconveniences resulting from anxiety and stress. If, from our side we take care to inform the importance of combining a suitable food with a behavior improvement program, pets, who wait for our food every day, will suffer less stress and will be happier. Did you know that including any of these supplements or foods you can help reduce stress? Tell us, we need your opinion. By: All Pet Food

How important are the right omega-3s in a pet's diet?
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

How important are the right omega-3s in a pet's diet?

Research shows that consumers are spending more money on their pets' food than ever before, with the sole aim to keep them healthy and happy. This can, however, only be achieved by a well-balanced diet. Omega-3s have many recognised health benefits for dogs and humans alike. Choosing a pet food that contains omega-3 is the first step you can take to ensure your pet can benefit from this important nutrient on a regular basis. But not all omega-3s are effectively utilized by pets. Therefore, choosing the right source is important. Not all omega-3s are the same Plant-based omega-3 in the form of ALA will have to be converted to EPA and DHA in order to give the same health benefits. However, the conversion rate of ALA to EPA and DHA is poor in pets, and less that 10 % will convert to these vital fatty acids. Hence, marine omega-3s are more effective that plant-based omega-3s. Krill are tiny crustaceans that are present in all oceans, holding a vital position in the marine food chain. Antarctic krill is a superior source of marine omega-3s, with a distinctive advantage when it comes to the form their omega-3s are made of. This is known as the phospholipid advantage. Recent studies have shown that the phospholipid-bound omega-3s from krill are more effective in raising omega-3 levels in a dog's body compared to triglyceride-bound omega-3s, such as those found in fish oil. Known as the foundation of all cells, omega-3s are more effectively incorporated into tissues cell membranes when bound to phospholipids. And this incorporation is crucial to obtain the health effects of omega-3s. Once in place in the cell membranes, the omega-3s EPA & DHA support the health of several vital organs, including the heart, kidney, liver, joints, brain, eyes, skin and coat. Krill is a superior source of omega-3s and much more Besides being a source of omega-3, krill is also naturally rich in marine proteins, choline and astaxanthin – a natural antioxidant that protects all body cells from oxidative damage. Krill meal (or QRILL Pet) is a 100% natural product, made only from whole Antarctic krill. Antarctic krill is protected from overfishing by CCAMLR and has obtained MSC certification assuring sustainable fishing practices, which makes QRILL Pet an attractive feed ingredient that ensures optimal health of pets in a sustainable manner. Source: Aker Biomarine

Is there a 6th flavor for Pets?
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

Is there a 6th flavor for Pets?

In this occasion I want to refer to an article on the perception of flavors in humans that I found very interesting and that in some way can contribute to the generation of greater knowledge about palatability in Pet Food. It is accepted that the human perceives 5 flavors that are: sweet, bitter, salty, acid and umami; this fifth flavor was added relatively recently and is linked to the glutamate rich flavors. Foods that contain this flavor are those that induce salivation, causing a pleasant sensation throughout the mouth. The knowledge that we have in pets is that cats, unlike dogs, do not have a strong perception or taste for sweet, salty or umami, while they have a good inclination for acidic flavors. According to a scientific study conducted by researchers at the University of Oregon, humans are able to recognize a sixth flavor, named "starchy." The study was carried out to show that humans have the possibility of differentiating this flavor from the rest of the existing ones. For this, 22 people were offered liquid solutions with different dissolved amounts of glucose-based polysaccharides. At the end of the test, 100% of the people admitted to having perceived a taste of "bread" according to the Western volunteers and "rice" according to the Eastern volunteers. Until now, the scientific community thought that humans detect the taste of starches by identifying their sweet molecules. However, with this study, it has been shown that humans can distinguish this new flavor. What's more, the sample participants were able to do so even when the researchers blocked their sweet taste receptors. On the other hand, Juyun Lim, Director of the research, has ensured that they have not been able to identify exclusive taste buds to recognize this sixth flavor. Within the complexity of describing a flavor, we could say that the starchy taste would be like eating flour. The use in Pet Food of complex carbohydrates (starches) derived from the inclusion in the formulas of grains such as corn, wheat, rice and oats leads us to reflect on how important this type of research can be in the Industry Pet Food. Author: Miguel López

Ingredients that are making their way into the Pet Food Industry, did you know them?
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

Ingredients that are making their way into the Pet Food Industry, did you know them?

By María Candelaria Carbajo

Trends are, in general terms, what mark the path of innovation and growth of companies. In our pet food industry, alternative fruits, vegetables and proteins are becoming increasingly popular.In this article we will tell you about the trends in new ingredients in Pet Food. As we discussed in a previous article, the type of food that is chosen for a pet increasingly reflects the eating style that its owners practice on a daily basis; This is already an indisputable trend that is increasing constantly. A spokesperson for the US Highbush Blueberry Council states: 'A few years ago there was very little fruit in pet products. Back then, the idea of fruits and vegetables in pet food for dogs and cats seemed unusual, yet intriguing to many in the industry. "   More fruits in the pet food formula Fruits as an ingredient are a relatively new category within the content of pet food; have been added to the classic ingredients embodying the concept of health, since the nutrients and fiber of the fruit have been proven to increase the overall nutritional value and, in some cases, improve the taste, texture, color and control of humidity. In addition, these ingredients allow you to take advantage of inherent nutraceutical or phytonutrient qualities, especially fruits rich in antioxidants. The fruits and components that are being used today are: Pureed strawberries, raspberries and blueberries, since it`s rich in fiber, and both dogs and cats get the benefits of fiber. The apple and its dried version, due to its high fiber value, as well as its water content that helps maintain moisture in moist foods. Citrus fruits and their fiber: At the beginning of 2019, the citrus fiber used in the production of pet food had increased by 437%. More vegetables among the components of pet food Currently, vegetables are also being incorporated into pet food recipes, as they offer significant nutritional benefits. This change occurs essentially because there are certain nutrients that animals cannot obtain from ingredients that come from animals. Thus, accompanying the trend of choosing organic and little processed products, the market is replacing the adherence of synthetic vitamins and minerals with those that can be obtained from organic fruits and vegetables and natural supplements. Vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and antioxidants can also help pets overcome and fight serious diseases, such as cancer. The vegetables and their components that are being used the most today are: • Dark green leafy vegetables, such as broccoli or kale, for their high content of calcium, potassium and magnesium. • Carrot and celery.   Alternative plant proteins Dogs and cats are considered carnivores, so meat is an essential component of their diet. Still, they don't always have to come from an animal. For some time now, the United States has been working on injecting animal muscle protein genes into microbes such as yeast, to then be fed and fermented. This results in proteins that are nutritionally identical to those from meat. In parallel, pets that are allergic to conventional ingredients are pushing the development of exotic proteins to continue to appeal to pets' taste buds while improving their health.   What are the downsides of these changes? Although it is true that, like people, animals need fruits and vegetables in their daily diet to have a balanced and nutritious diet, when it comes to replacing a percentage of meat products with more vegetables and fruits, a problem arises: The sustainability. The Pet Food Industry is a fundamental part in sustainability and circular economy, mainly due to the use of meat by-products that are considered waste unfit for human consumption. Some manufacturers use animal by-products humans do not consume to produce pet food, since, despite being 'waste' for people, they are basic components full of nutrients. For example, fat from poultry is commonly used in the pet food industry to add calories and flavor. The human consumption of these animals leaves internal organs, feathers and many other parts without consuming. That said, we can affirm that yes, fruits and vegetables are essentially necessary in the pet diet, and their increase and incorporation are beneficial for the health and general well-being of domestic animals. Even so, the great challenge for the industry will be to find a new destination or purpose for human meat food waste, or a way for it to coexist with the increase in plant ingredients in the pet food market. Conclusion It should be noted that companies in the industry have a responsibility, in a way, to educate consumers about the changes and improvements they make in their products and food. They can do it through their networks, their packaging, and by providing accurate information to local vendors and retailers, who are pretty close to the end consumer. On the other hand, while pet owners increasingly prefer plant-based, organic and natural ingredients, the real reason is they really believe it will be in the best interest of their pets. Thus, the question that arises is: will it improve my pet's health? Will it have fewer digestive problems? Will it have more energy? Ultimately, the function of the food formula is what is truly important. Either way, it's safe to say that plant-based ingredients are much more than just a trend, but rather a beneficial addition to the health and well-being of pets. Are you already aware of these new additions to the industry? Tell us, we are interested in knowing your point of view. Source: All Pet Food  

Make It Grain
Cereals
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7+ MIN

Make It Grain

Grain-inclusive diets for pets have continued to gain momentum as a valuable source of nutrition. There was a time when grain-inclusive diets started taking a back seat as grain-free diets emerged on the scene—but not anymore.  Public opinion on grain-free diets shifted in a major way following the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) statement implying that there was a link between these foods and canine heart disease. This inadvertently prompted pet parents to seek out and vet alternative diets, including grain-inclusive ones, to ensure their pet's diet safely fulfilled their nutritional needs.  'Since that report launched, we've noticed that consumers have not only become more aware of grain in a pet's diet, but have been more conscious of their pet's diet as a whole,' says Kate McCarron, top dog at Portland Pet Food Company. 'More than ever, pet owners are looking for variety in their pet's food.' As pet parents investigate and do their due diligence to learn more about how beneficial these diets can be, some are making the switch to grain. Even if the dust has settled on the whole grain-free/DCM controversy, manufacturers have found that more pet parents have opened up to the idea of using grain-inclusive diets.  'I think the momentum for grain-inclusive formulas has maintained,' says Robert Downey, president of Annamaet Petfoods. 'I think some pet parents have simply found that their pet does just as well on a grain-inclusive food and they often find these products are less expensive and equally nutritious.'  Despite trends about the popularity of grain-inclusive diets over the years, the bottom line is that pet parents want a formula that can successfully support their pets' health and well being. 'Grains are just one category of ingredients with an excellent profile of nutrients and dietary fiber to include as part of an overall balanced diet,' says Heather Acuff, product development manager of Nulo.  Going for Grains Within the grain category, there are different varieties to choose from, such as barley, corn, oats, rice, wheat, rye and sorghum. 'Wholesome grains like oatmeal, brown rice and whole oats are carbohydrates which provide a highly-digestible, readily available source of energy for pets,' says Natalie Asaro, MSc, companion animal nutritionist with Petcurean. 'These grains are also great sources of protein and fiber.'  According to Kathy Gross, Ph.D., worldwide director of clinical nutrition at Hill's Pet Nutrition, grains have a purpose for both dogs and cats of all ages and can serve as a source of energy, plant-based protein, essential vitamins and minerals and healthy fiber.  'The nutrients in grains nourish the heart, help build strong bones and teeth, maintain healthy digestion and provide the calories needed for our pets' daily play and activity,' she says. In some cases, grains can also help improve a pet's health and address certain conditions. Dr. Gross shares that grain allergies are rarer than you might think and, 'properly balanced foods, designed with the right type and amount of grains, can be used as nutritional aids in the management of many pet health conditions.' Distinguishing the right type of grains is important for retailers and pet parents, since not all grains are viewed the same way. 'While there is no regulatory definition of ancient grains, they are considered grains that are unchanged by selective hybridization and genetic modification over the last several centuries,' says Acuff. 'The key differences between ancient and modern grains are seen in crop yield, crop hardiness, genetic diversity and nutritional composition.'  However, not all grains offer the same nutritional content, which is something all pet parents should realize before picking out an option for their pet.  'A diet containing high levels of refined grains does not support immune health and increases the chance of immune mediated diseases in dogs, such as allergies,' explains Downey. 'Compared to refined grains, most whole grains provide more protein, fiber and other nutrients, including calcium, magnesium, potassium as well as phytonutrients.'  With all the benefits they can offer, certain grains may end up being an important component of pets' diets, with more than one variety infused into a single formula.  'Grains are a great source of vitamins, minerals and fiber—they aren't just filler,' says Downey. 'Each grain has its own unique nutritional profile, so adding more than one will often improve the nutrient profile of the whole diet.'  At the end of the day, to provide optimal nutrition for pets, grains are just one type of ingredient in a complete and balanced diet.  'It is important to have the right balance of nutrients in your dog's food, grains provide dogs with important digestible nutrients including energy, protein, vitamin E and linoleic acid,' says Dr. Gross. 'It is those nutrients that are crucial to a dog's overall health.'  Selling Solutions It's imperative for manufacturers to have a crystal clear explanation as to where they source their products because educated pet parents care more than ever before. Pet food manufacturers have to be committed to transparency when it comes to the ingredients they use and their manufacturing procedures.  Many manufacturers, such as Annamaet, rely on trusted suppliers and conduct their own independent lab testing.  'Our raw materials coming in are tested for aflatoxins and vomitoxins, and no product is released without salmonella and other bacterial testing as well as proximate analysis to ensure proper nutrient levels,' says Downey.  Each grain product sourced can have a different nutritional value, as a result of how they've been sourced. '...I'd recommend looking into the processing of the grains,' says McCarron. 'If looking at a product cooked in large batches at an extremely high heat, it's unlikely that the grains hold any nutritional value anymore, whereas a slow-cooked meal will still maintain all of the benefits it originally held.'  'We also analyze each product's ingredient profile for essential nutrients to ensure your pet gets the stringent, precise formulation they need,' adds Dr. Gross. Asaro highlights that on top of looking for options that come from a trusted source and are formulated with quality ingredients, pet parents should consult the product's packaging to learn more about it. 'It's...critical to ensure the packaging includes all the important information from a nutrition perspective including an ingredient statement, guaranteed analysis, calorie content, feeding guidelines and a nutritional adequacy statement,' says Asaro.  What's on the packaging matters, including the brand name. Since several companies offer a range of recipes, including those which are grain-free, provide high animal protein, moderate protein, plant-based protein or contain limited ingredients to address food sensitivities, retailers can provide a variety of solutions using one trusted brand.  'This will help ensure you are selecting a company that is well-experienced and not simply responding to a trend in the market,' adds Asaro.  It's the responsibility of the retailer to convey as much product information as possible so customers can come to their own conclusions. It's also key for retailers to keep in mind that, before altering a pet's diet, a pet parent should consult with their veterinarian about the diet change.  When it comes to pet nutrition, 'there can be a lot of misleading information out there, that's why it's more important than ever that pet parents get the facts needed to make informed decisions,' says Dr. Gross.  Finding the Right Fit Before anything else, sales associates and retailers need to be educated about the benefits of using grain-inclusive diets. Thankfully, in addition to working with suppliers to secure all information about specific products, there is a ton of information online about grain diets for retailers to tap into.  'Share case studies, blogs and other information with sales associates so that they can feel confident assisting customers who may not understand the difference between grains and why they are so crucial to pet health,' McCarron suggests.  Using online tools is key in our world today, and finding ways to engage consumers and educate them as much as possible about the options available to them will help you establish trust and authority in their eyes.  'It's important to provide opportunities to connect with your customers to provide the same level of guidance via chat, email or telephone,' says Asaro.  In stores, sales associates will likely work with customers that have researched the grain diet and have an idea of what they're looking for. Asaro feels that when working with an educated consumer, the best service a sales associate can provide is to help guide them to the final decision that's best for their pet. Being passionate about your products and pet nutrition on the whole will go a long way, too.  As sales associates discuss diets with customers, it's important for them to not limit their recommendations to one particular diet, but to showcase all the options available.  'A well-trained sales associate would not advocate for any particular type of diet above others,' explains Asaro. 'Instead, they will help pet parents understand that dietary requirements will vary by animal, and that the most important thing is ensure those needs are met.' by Jen Goetz - Pet business

Plant and Animal Nutrient Sources for Dry Pet Food
Macro Ingredients
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8+ MIN

Plant and Animal Nutrient Sources for Dry Pet Food

In this latest installment of the series on ingredients for making pet food, we will analyze the sources of nutrients for dry foods, which represent 96% of sales volume in Latin America and therefore a very important source of commercial transactions. Although most of these ingredients are used in food for all types of animals, it is very important to define an exclusive specification for pets that considers one of the most important parameters of our industry to achieve success: the sensory properties, specifically the palatability of the individual ingredients. Ingredients used in all market segments Corn (Zea mays) 1 Corn is the most used raw material in the pet food industry, it represents in some products up to 60% of its formulation and in regions such as Latin America it can represent 50% of the volume of purchases of ingredients in companies. In each ingredient we will focus on a technical aspect of quality, in the case of corn it will be the reception controls of the ingredient, that is, the acceptance criteria. Since it represents 50% of the purchase volume, it is a very important ingredient from every point of view. There are different genetic varieties of corn in the world, the most suitable for the manufacture of pet food is yellow corn and in terms of commercial classifications it must comply with USDA grade 2, as a minimum. Of all the quality requirements for yellow corn, the most important to control is the mycotoxin content, particularly aflatoxins, since pets are particularly sensitive to these contaminants. A thorough review of toxins from fungi is outside the limits of this work, we suggest going deeper into Munkvold (2). Before reviewing the most appropriate parameters to receive corn in a production plant, we will clarify that it is essential to have a very efficient sampling system to obtain representative portions of the several tons of corn that are received in a company monthly. The most common specification for corn used in pet food is as follows:   Corn is one of the main sources of energy in food, the energy comes from starches, amylose and amylopectin, which are also the main components to be modified by gelatinization during the extrusion process. Therefore, it is an ingredient that has nutritional and functional properties (functionality is the technological behavior in the production process). This is why the quality of the corn has an impact on the food format, the behavior of the extrusion system, the digestibility and the density of the final product. Reasons why monitoring of this ingredient is of utmost importance. Rice (Oryza sativa) Rice is the third most used cereal worldwide in the manufacture of pet food, in some regions it is used even more than corn since the price and availability are better. Rice has a better digestibility (3) level than corn and its starches are also more functional in commercial extrusion systems. These two reasons place it as a cereal of choice in the formulation of premium diets that do not have the restriction of being grain-free. The incidence of contaminants in rice is comparatively lower than in corn, however, a careful mycotoxin analysis is essential before enabling its use in an industrial formulation. The quality parameters usually required for rice used in pet diets are: Description: brewing broken rice, quarter grain or higher. Without added additives. As seen, whole grain is not used in pets but broken grain, the fundamental reason is the cost of the whole grain and the fact of avoiding competition with human food. Since the broken grain is more likely to deteriorate it is very important to be strict with the quality control of this ingredient and with the storage conditions.  Animal fats (Chicken oil) Chicken oil, beef tallow, pork tallow and fish oils are generally used as animal fats in the production of pet food. Samples that the first three fulfill functions of providing energy and flavor, fish oil is fundamentally a source of unsaturated fatty acids omega 3 and 6. In this article for reasons of space we will only analyze chicken oil, being the requirements applied to this ingredient applicable to other fats from different species. All animal by-products come from the remnants of the meat-processing industry for humans, for economic and environmental reasons all parts of the animals that are not consumed must be transformed into usable and non-polluting by-products. Thus, for example, from the poultry industry, after the chickens are processed, there are remaining feathers, blood, viscera and some unconsumed parts. The feathers are hydrolyzed and converted into feather meal, the blood is spray dried and is a source of protein for the animal feed industry, and the viscera are cooked in digesters with steam and pressure, generating two products, a high-content meal. protein of great digestibility and palatability, chicken gut meal, which we will review later, and chicken oil. Given that the production processes of these animal ingredients are not completely standardized, it is very important to clearly define what you want to buy, for example in the case of chicken oil, a concise definition can be the following: 'Chicken oil resulting from the first filtration of the digestion process of fresh chicken entrails. Product obtained from the fusion of avian tissues from the commercial slaughter process in authorized cold stores. It consists essentially of glycidic fatty acid esters and does not contain free fatty acids or other matters obtained from fat. The raw raw material must be stabilized with an antioxidant during cooking to avoid the development of peroxides. Industrial chicken oil must be stabilized with BHT, BHA, tocopherols (300 ppm). The raw material may not be more than 12 hours at room temperature before its treatment. " As can be seen, the definition of the ingredient involves the parts of the animal that take part in the process, the type of manufacturing process, and the conditions of the raw material. Another important piece of information to be provided to suppliers in the product specification is the level and strategy of anti-oxidation of the fat, which is essential for the ingredient to be suitable for food manufacturing (4). From a physicochemical and organoleptic point of view, chicken oil must meet these requirements at least: The chicken oil is added to the outside of the food in an operation known as application, the objective is to add energy, but also palatability and shine to give a more attractive appearance to the final kibbles. Since the application operation proceeds at low temperatures, if the oil is microbiologically contaminated, so will the final product, for which the microbiological control in the reception and storage of this ingredient must be strict. Ingredients used preferably in food of the economic segment Wheat bran The bran is a residue of the milling of the wheat grain, made up of the husk (pericarp) and mixed with the surface part of the albumen or germ (endosperm). In general it is presented as fine powder, flakes or pellets. It is a product with drawbacks and benefits, the greatest benefit is that it contains a high percentage of proteins at a very affordable price, the major drawback is that it can have high concentrations of vomitoxins. In cheap foods it is a fundamental ingredient due to its low level. The quality parameters usually specified are the following: Soybean flour Soy flour is a very complete and inexpensive source of vegetable protein, it is obtained from the processing of soybeans. The process consists of the extraction of the oil and subsequent cooling of the flour that remains after the extraction. Although the protein is of good nutritional quality, due to the heat of the extraction process it loses all its functionality, this important quality of the ingredients is preserved by the soy isolates, which we will review later. The most common parameters are: Soy flour is generally the second ingredient in purchase volume after corn in a typical Latin American plant. It is therefore another very important ingredient for the industry (5). Ingredients used preferably in standard segment foods Bovine Meat and Bone Meal (6) Meat meal is the main source of animal protein used in pet food, it is a by-product of bovine slaughter, fresh viscera and other by-products of beef slaughter are processed in digesters at high temperature and pressure immediately. such a way to avoid the development of biogenic amines such as histidine. It cannot include blood, hair, horns, hooves, and leather. It must not contain additives or adulterants, toxic or harmful materials and any part of another animal that is not cattle. When the cooking product is pressed, the bovine tallow and meat and bone meal are isolated. Typically it has these physicochemical parameters: Organoleptic parameters: Wheat (7) Wheat is the second most used cereal in the world to make pet food, both rice and wheat are related to standard or premium segment foods. In addition to being a source of energy through its high starch content, it also provides good quality protein and fiber. The most common specification in the industry is USDA grade 3 or higher. Organoleptic requirements: The most dangerous contaminant in wheat is DON vomitoxin, from the fusarium fungus that grows and produces mycotoxins under specific conditions of humidity and temperature, generally related to harvests in rainy seasons and storage of very humid wheat in hot climates, when this situation occurs, it is important to tighten the controls of this parameter. Ingredients used preferably in premium segment foods Chicken by-product meal (8) Chicken by-product meal is one of the most digestible animal protein sources available on the global ingredient market. On the other hand, in recent decades a major effort has been made to standardize this ingredient by poultry companies and the animal feed industry, generating a high added value ingredient with very specific quality controls and an industrial standard, commonly used in various countries around the world. The description of the ingredient is the same as for chicken oil, come from the same production process and are separated during the pressing operation, followed by the typical parameters of a chicken meal: Organoleptic parameters: This has been a non-exhaustive review of ingredients used in the pet food industry, there are hundreds of materials that could not be analyzed for reasons of space and priority, we nevertheless believe that we have covered the most relevant ones and make clear the bases of the many facets that make up what is considered a suitable ingredient for making pet food. For any further questions, do not hesitate to contact the author. 1) Parera, Carlos. Producción de maíz dulce / Carlos Parera. - 1a ed . - Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires: Ediciones INTA, 2017. 2) Mycotoxins in corn: occurrence, impacts, and management. GP Munkvold, S Arias, I Taschl, C Gruber-Dorninger - Corn, 2019 – Elsevier. 3) Riitta Kempe, Markku Saastamoinen, Seppo Hyyppä. Composition, digestibility and nutritive value of cereals for dogs. Agricultural and Food Science · September 2004. 4) National Renderers Association. 2003. A Buyer's Guide to Rendered Products, 15-16. 5) http://www.fundacionfedna.org/ingredientes_para_piensos/harina-de-soja-47-pb, consulted 15/09/2020. 6) For more information see http://www.senasa.gob.ar/sites/default/files/ARBOL_SENASA/INFORMACION/NORMATIVA/4238/capitulo_xxiv.pdf 7) Kloster, Andrés. Utilización de trigo en alimentación animal. 2015. INTA Marcos Juárez. 8) Hertrampf J.W., Piedad-Pascual F. (2000) Poultry By-Product Meal. In: Handbook on Ingredients for Aquaculture Feeds. Springer, Dordrecht. By: Juan Manuel Peralta

All about a súper premium fiber system
Macro Ingredients
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11+ MIN

All about a súper premium fiber system

In our note in the Agroindustria Magazine of its edition No. 147, we made a general description of the historical fiber and the new forms accepted by international organizations. We also told about the types of fiber offered by the market, functions, virtues and where we wanted to continue seeding the field of fiber systems. Aiming that there are more and more professionals, technicians or those responsible for thinking, assembling and deciding the ingredients in pet diets, we invite you to consider and incorporate these parameters of dietary fiber, soluble and insoluble in their formulators. We are going to see throughout this note the importance of including them, and how it became a market trend, a point that we are going to corroborate with the conclusions. They ask us for more, more specific suggestions, type of application, inclusion rate and times. And perhaps the answer is: the most successful combinations between them. They also raise many doubts, which we will try to guide, based on our own experiences or those of others; and we will leave the door open to co-create, to think about it together, to achieve the best solution in each case. Total dietary fiber is made up of insoluble (FI) and soluble (FS) fiber. Insoluble fibers, they are not insoluble in aqueous media such as intestinal and classic examples are the structures of vegetables: lignin, cellulose and some hemicelluloses. Cereal grains are especially rich in water-insoluble fibers, found in greater amounts in wheat and corn. They have a sponge effect, they are able to retain water in their matrix, several times their own weight, forming low viscosity mixtures. They lead to an increase in fecal mass and a greater acceleration of intestinal transit. They are not very fermentable because they resist the action of microorganisms in the intestine. This is why the logic of using insoluble fiber in the treatment or prevention of constipation. Soluble Fibers, their solubility simply refers to the fact that they dissolve in aqueous media. They are viscous fibers, which form gels naturally and their range is very varied depending on how simple or complex their chemical structure is and whether or not they have the ability to be prebiotic. For example, going to the smallest or simplest: oligosaccharides (fructooligosaccharides, galactooligosaccharides, xylooligosaccharides, and isomaltooligosaccharides), inulin. And if we go to something larger or complex, we find: pectins, hydrocolloid gums, resistant starch, polysaccharides from algae, non-digestible sugars polydextrose, methylcellulose, carboxymethylcellulose, hydroxymethylpropylcellulose and others. If we cite some ingredients rich in soluble fiber, we find legumes, oats, barley, beets, carrots, apples and many other fruits and vegetables. Fermentability of dietary fiber: it is the digestion process that takes place under anaerobic conditions in the large intestine, where bacteria, with their numerous enzymes, can digest it to a greater or lesser extent depending on its structure. This process is fundamental, since thanks to it the development of bacterial flora takes place, as well as the maintenance of the integrity of the intestinal epithelium, which is relevant for the absorption and metabolism of nutrients. Both soluble and insoluble fibers live in a flexible balance and well associated achieve important health benefits. SEASON II: AND THE WINNER IS ... What makes fiber so important? What describes our product beyond how attractive our packaging may be. This point is very important to answer us and the first thing we must be clear about. The degree of fiber contribution in our food gives a visible result by the owner, as few ingredients, since it will define the type of feces and presence of gases. If we make a mistake in the formulation, in the chosen ingredients or in their balance, we may end up in diarrhea or gas formation in the animal, where the direct responsible will be the content of that bag with which they feed their pet daily. . And with this ingredient we will be closer to the right path: better quality feces, easy to collect and minimal gas formation. Up to substantial improvements in digestibility and absorption. Being a great complement to prevent pilobezoars, gastric dilation and volvulus, obesity, diabetes and kidney diseases. Pet nutrition is currently increasingly focused on the use of food (digestibility studies) and on improving human-animal interaction as much as possible. Among this interaction is also the fact of how to reduce the number of stools per day, improve fecal characteristics, consistency, moisture and odor. It is also sought with commercial foods, not only an appreciable body condition, including fur, but also the prevention of diseases. How will fiber do that? Each part of the fiber system fulfills its function. An INSOLUBLE will absorb water and act as ballast to keep traffic active, without pause. Movement Yes always, Speed ​​No The other SOLUBLE will form a viscous solution from the stomach, slowing gastric emptying, generating satiety and decreasing appetite. Already in the large intestine, depending on the type of fiber, it can only improve the pH of the medium or it will also have a great capacity to be fermented. This fermentation will be able to multiply bacteria and the more bacteria, the greater the digestion of everything that was not previously digested by gastric and duodenal enzymes. It improves the general digestibility and in particular the protein digestibility. Passage rate: it is the physical variable that we determine with the fibers. Digestion depends on enzymes and the rate of flow within the intestine (rate of passage). This will determine the contact between enzymes and food and between nutrients and absorbing surfaces. Digestibility: information on the chemical composition of a food is of little use if its digestibility is unknown. Digestibility studies are used as a measure of quality. A highly digestible food results in a greater amount of nutrients available for intestinal absorption, therefore, a less necessary amount of food to satisfy requirements. Factors that affect the digestibility of the feed: Although there are multiple factors that can affect it, such as the quality of each raw material, time since harvest, process variables, temperatures, pressure, etc., several authors agree that excesses in the inclusion rate of fiber, especially insoluble ones, It will give fiber the ability to affect its own digestibility as well as that of other nutrients, such as protein and carbohydrate digestibility. Understanding that the variable 'fiber' is one of the essential factors in this regard. Fiber-linked digestibility Different authors concluded that the inclusion of increasing levels of crude fiber in pet diets negatively affects the digestibility of dry matter. Mainly due to an increase in the rate of passage and less contact with food enzymes. As after the inclusion of prebiotic soluble fibers, changes are observed in microbial populations that lead to greater digestibility of nutrients at the hindgut level. In vivo studies on prebiotics such as fructooligosaccharides and inulin have shown encouraging results, attributed mainly to their effect on fiber utilization, the apparent absorption of calcium and phosphorus, and the modulation of hindgut fermentation. The daily production of feces has an inverse relationship with the digestibility of the food. As the digestibility of the diet increases, the stool volume decreases and solid, better-formed stools are produced. At the same amount of food consumed, with a difference in digestibility respectively. Heces quality: they can be evaluated quantitatively (number of daily defecations, weight, DM content, pH) and qualitatively (visual classification) considering consistency and shape, applying a numerical scale. Fiber increases the volume and water retention of the intestinal content, is fermented by the colon microflora with the production of volatile fatty acids and lactic acid, modulates intestinal transit time and different authors suggest that it is necessary to include a certain amount of fiber to maintain the health and optimal function of the entire gastrointestinal tract, as well as for the control of body weight and the treatment of obesity, since they lead to a state of satiety of the animal. The optimal amount of fiber inclusion occurs when the stool is soft enough to prevent constipation, but firm enough to prevent diarrhea. Fiber size and absorption capacity The different effects of the fiber will depend on the physical characteristics of the fiber. Trials observed that different sizes of insoluble fiber particles produced different effects and that the largest size, 200 to 300 microns, was the most effective in producing better quality feces, compared to fibers of smaller size 30 to 70 microns. Fecal PH is the thermometer of the intestinal microbiota. It is a parameter that is directly related to the fermentative activity of the intestinal microflora. Greater fermentation, higher levels of volatile fatty acids and lactate that can be used by the animal as a source of energy, maintain the health of the intestinal epithelium, reduce the incidence of intestinal pathologies and control the proliferation of pathogenic microorganisms by reducing the pH. The ingredients of the diet that are not digested and absorbed in the small intestine pass to the large intestine where they are fermented by the microbiota. In addition, the addition of fermentable fiber to the diet of dogs leads to an increase in the production of acetic, propionic, butyric and lactic acids, being fructooligosaccharides the ones that generate a faster production of these and together there is a decrease in fecal pH. Fecal pH values ​​were reported that were between 6.5 to 6.8 for dry diets and 7.0 to 7.1 for semi-humid diets. Lower pH values ​​are associated with VFA concentrations and inversely with fecal NH3 concentration. With these parameters in mind: Digestibility (consumption - less excreta) - stool pH, volume and consistency, we decided to carry out a few short tests. SEASON III SUPER ACTION FIBERS Assay I: randomized crossover experimental with an objective of observation in Excreta Quality and Digestibility. Using as a base a Premium commercial food, applying a 4% inclusion rate of dietary fiber and whose only variant was the type of fiber. Using a common ingredient like beet pulp vs. a predetermined fiber system, both ingredients with the same percentage of total dietary fiber: 65%. For 10 days in 10 dogs. Average results: Dry Matter Digestibility 74%. Crude Protein Digestibility 81% (1.5% better for fiber system). Digestibility of the Ethereal Extract 93%. For more challenge, at the end of the trial we added a period with overeating. A diet twice the intake to cover the maintenance requirement. No physical or physiological alteration compatible with a pathological state was observed in any of the treatments. Observations: We did not obtain significant differences. They both gave very similar performances. The fiber system had a plus of prebiotic fibers, which had not manifested. Conclusion: After months of analysis and research we reached the deduction that the trial time was not enough to see manifestations of the ingredients in the food. The intestinal microbiota is progressive and adaptive. A new challenge in inclusion rate and time. Assay II: experimental crossed, random with objective of observation in and Quality of Excreta and Digestibility. As a base we use a Premium commercial food using a frequent ingredient such as beet pulp at a 3% inclusion rate vs. Default fiber system at 4% inclusion rate. Both ingredients with the same percentage of Total Dietary Fiber: 65%. For 40 days in 6 dogs. Total Digestibility: It was 6.7% higher for the fiber system. Average Deposits: It was 5% lower for the fiber system. Moisture percentage: It was 1.5% lower for the fiber system. Results: we observed the effect of the soluble and insoluble combination (predetermined fiber system) and the evident contribution of prebiotics. Conclusion: Marked effect on digestibility. Can you jump from an economic food category to Premium only by varying the type of Fiber? Organizations such as the European Pet Food Industry Federation (FEDIAF), NRC (National Research Council) and the AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials), agreed on the dry matter digestibility criterion (dMS) as one of the parameters to classify food according to its nutritional adequacy in standard, premium and super premium. Qualifying as generic or standard those with dry matter digestibility close to 72%. Understanding that, without being a rule, the premium and super premium are made with higher cost ingredients, of quality and more stable formula, whose dry matter digestibility is greater than 78%, with firm and scarce stool production.   Greater digestibility, lower stool production and better feces consistency. Tips for soluble fibers: They develop the intestinal microbiota and that is a process that requires a few weeks, it has no magical effect. The smaller, 4 to 10 monosaccharides in the chain, the BETTER, the faster they will be fermented, from the first portion of the intestine, already from the ileum. The larger and more complex they are, we run the risk that they end up being fermented in the colon where there is a greater amount of methanogenic and undesirable bacteria. Low Ph in stool. Good sign! Thermosets: check with the supplier that they are thermostable and that they withstand the temperatures of the extrusion process. Soluble: that is, they are completely solubilized in aqueous medium as they would in the intestine. It is simple to taste, in a glass of water and simple shaking. Prebiotics: not all soluble fiber serves as food for beneficial bacteria. And it can even feed pathogenic bacteria. Being prebiotic opens a range of virtues to food. In the microbiota cycle - volatile fatty acids - Gut-related immunity. Tips for insoluble fibers: Consider all the ingredients. All vegetable ingredients add up to this parameter. The value of the insoluble is riskier by excess, than by default. Authors prefer that they absorb the greatest amount of their weight in water. Size: the bigger the better, 200 to 300 microns. An insoluble fiber can be moderately fermented and, as it has less water retention capacity, it can lead to better quality stool. Trends in fibers: more and more the industry seeks the inclusion of fruits such as apple, citrus, red fruits. And vegetables like Carrot, celery and legumes. All of them associated with the value of their dietary fiber. Industrial flexitarianism: A prebiotic fiber ensures a superior intestinal microbiota mass. With this optimal mass of bacteria, we ensure that the modifications we make in the formulation of ingredients or even variations in quality within the same ingredient, as occurs in animal meals, if they are not digested gastrically or intestinally, then they will have a high possibility of being fermented by these bacteria. Finally, we will compensate for digestibility and maintain the quality of excreta. Pets are members of the family and as such, aspects of their care are increasingly being considered that bring them closer to humanization in some way. From clothing, accessories, treats and more products intended especially for dogs and cats that most often integrate them into the lifestyle of the people who care for them. There are many examples that we can share, based on global trends. The routine contemplates, the game, the walk, the daily "mime" and the food without a doubt is a fundamental part of this routine. It is for all this that we have expressed that we are extremely willing to explore the world of ingredients in the nutrition of our pets. Authors: 1. Gonzalo H. Garriz. 2. Hermes Villalba. 3. Valentin Braggio. Ingredion Argentina. Animal Nutrition Team 1) Veterinarian. Technical advisor in Animal Nutrition Hermes. 2) Zootechnician. Technical advisor in Nutrition. 3) Veterinarian. Technical advisor in Animal Nutrition. Source: CAENA

Can vegetable protein replace animal protein completely on a Pet Food formula?
Vegetable Origin
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6+ MIN

Can vegetable protein replace animal protein completely on a Pet Food formula?

'Pet foods with a higher content of plant-based ingredients provide a sustainable, ethical and environmentally friendly option for pet owners,' says Jennifer Adolphe, Nutrition Manager at Petcurean. Yes, studies affirm that it is necessary to look for fewer polluting options for the meat industry, but the question that arises is: does vegetable protein provide the same nutrients? How safe is it to remove meat protein from animals that are essentially carnivores? In this article we deepen into the debate about whether pet food can (or should) be 100% vegetable or not. We will review the different aspects of this debate that, beyond nutritional, it is also moral for each of the future consumers, and we will focus on the cases in which a food based on vegetable protein is recommended or preferred. Nowadays, speaking globally, you can already find foods with formulas 100% of vegetable origin, that is: strictly vegan foods, which do not contain any type of ingredient of animal origin. There are also some intermediates, which can be considered "vegetarian", in the sense that most of their ingredients are of plant origin and not animal. Which is the industry challenge? Compared to the manufacture of food for humans, the big problem is that, when it comes to feeding pets, balanced food must be perfectly designed to be "complete and balanced." All the nutrients, vitamins and proteins that a dog or cat needs have to be in the food (and in the right proportions). What happens with humans is that we consume a very varied diet every day, so if a food has a certain nutritional imbalance, we do not even know it because we supply it, in most cases, with the nutrients of another food. Instead, pet owners feed the same food for years, if they are satisfied with it. So if cats and dogs are carnivores, how do we get meat protein out of their diet? Well… yes and no. They are and they are not. Cats are obligated carnivores: they need to consume meat to develop. They can eat other foods, but they do need meat, simply because they cannot efficiently digest all the nutrients in plant matter. In contrast, a scavenger or facultative carnivore, such as dogs, is the animal that consumes meat as its main food, although it could survive only on plant matter. Yes. Survive. Not develop, that is, grow vigorously. Dogs could exist on a properly balanced meatless diet, although most would rather not. Cats, for their part, require meat products in their diet due to their need for taurine and their inability to convert carotene to retinol. Hence the great moral debate arises: A dog could be fed vegetables and grains, but would you be deciding for him (and against his instincts), considering that, most likely, he would choose a piece of meat to a serving of legumes? What are the nutritional requirements of a dog and a cat? Dogs and cats need twenty-two different amino acids to fulfill the functions necessary to develop properly. Of these 22 amino acids, the dog can produce 12, and 10 are nutritionally essential. In the case of the cat, 11 amino acids are essential. This means that we, from the industry, are responsible for providing through food the missing amino acids, such as: • Arginine: stimulates the immune system, induces the release of growth hormone and supports the liver. • Histidine: releases histamines, is associated with pain control, and widens small blood vessels to stimulate the stomach. • Methionine: helps the functions of the gallbladder, prevents fat deposits in the liver and balances the pH of the urinary tract. However, there are certain essential amino acids for dogs and cats that, very often, are not present in plant proteins. Some of them are: arginine, taurine, methionine, lysine and tryptophan. This leads to the conclusion that when considering creating a plant-based formula to meet the demands of this market sector, it is essential to consider the difference between the various amino acid profiles of plant and animal proteins. It is because of these different amino acid profiles that animal protein has historically been considered "complete", due to the fact that vegetable protein (such as grain, corn gluten or soy flour) does not contain all amino acids by themselves (properly proportioned) necessary for the proper development and growth of a dog and / or a cat. Does vegetable protein have any advantages? The digestibility of plant proteins depends on two main factors: their source and the processes by which they are incorporated into pet food. For example, if they are undercooked or overcooked they can lead to digestibility problems, but if they are handled correctly, they can be as valuable and digestible as animal protein. For example, isolated soy protein, hydrolyzed soy, corn gluten and wheat gluten are purified sources of highly digestible plant proteins. Wheat gluten has been shown to be nearly 10% more digestible than beef. This brings us to the main benefit of plant protein: a food based on plant protein is recommended for pets with gastrointestinal problems or diseases. This is mainly because undigested proteins can overstimulate the gastrointestinal immune system, increasing the risk of causing a food intolerance (allergy). Likewise, an undigested protein can also promote the appearance of bacteria that are harmful to the colon and the pet, as a result of the fermentation of these proteins, which brings a strong fecal smell, flatulence and diarrhea. It is proven that humans suffering from liver disorders and susceptible to hepatic encephalopathy (HE) they lean on vegetable or dairy proteins rather than sources of meat protein, as it helps them control symptoms and maintain natural body condition. In correlation, there is evidence that similar nutritional choices for HD dogs were beneficial, given the change in blood ammonia concentration that occurs when leaving a meat protein-based diet and replacing it with plant protein. In the case of pets that suffer from EPI (exocrine pancreatic insufficiency) and skin diseases, a diet based on hydrolyzed soy and rice protein is suggested specifically, since it could significantly improve their clinical condition. The latest discoveries related to animal protein Soy, which is high in protein and has an amino acid composition similar to that of meat, has been found to be more complete than previously thought. Research and studies continue on how to enhance its digestibility. Wheat gluten has been found to be high in crude protein and digestible, which is why it is increasingly included in diets in Europe or the United States. Recently, corn gluten meal was identified as a highly digestible vegetable protein suitable for use in a canine diet. In conclusion The fact that an animal will always prefer a piece of meat to a vegetable or legume is undeniable, both by us, who create and improve the products of the pet food industry, and by the owners themselves. It's their nature. Even thought, more and more owners decide for options with more and more plant ingredients, due to an anti speciesist issue (that is, no animal species are more valuable than another), and sustainable (meat production consumes many natural resources). Because of that, from our sector, we have to be up-to-date regarding trends and new market demands, in order to develop products that satisfy their wishes and, in turn, increase the profitability of both manufacturing companies and companies input suppliers. Tell us your opinion about vegetable protein. Do you think this type of food will be successful? We read you. By: All Pet Food        

Why is chlorinated chicken such a controversial ingredient?
Animal Origin
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4+ MIN

Why is chlorinated chicken such a controversial ingredient?

In recent years, chlorinated chicken is an ingredient that has reached more than one debate in the pet food industry. In recent times, this term has been heard more frequently, due to Brexit and how it would affect the quality of pet food. In this article we tell you what it is and why it is so contradictory in our industry. First, what does it mean for chicken to be "chlorinated"? The word "chlorinated" refers to the process of washing the bird with an antimicrobial solution of chlorinated water. The purpose of this stage is to eliminate bacteria and other microorganisms that can cause diseases such as Salmonella and Campylobacter. The great confrontation over this practice is between the European Union, which already has it banned, and the United States, which continues to practice it both in food for humans and pets. The European Union awards that allowing this technique is aimed directly at the health and welfare of animals. It states that when chlorinated water has to be used it is because during the life of the birds there were poor hygiene, health and welfare practices. What does this have to do with Brexit? Well, the reality is that, with the departure of the United Kingdom, one of the main suppliers of pet food, from the EU, the member countries are driven to seek new horizons to meet the demand for pet food. In this way, the United States is disqualified and is not a viable option, given that its products do not meet the quality standards of Europe. The truth is that the United States is the world's largest producer of poultry meat, and almost a fifth of what it produces is exported, and its low welfare standards allow it to achieve one of the cheapest productions in the world; However, the European pet food market is one of the highest quality, so they have never negotiated to relax their standards and requirements for pesticides, antibiotics and labeling. So what is the problem with chlorinated chicken? The EFSA has questioned since 1997 the food safety of chicken from the United States due to chlorinated water. Also, Kath Dalmeny (executive director of a British group of food and agricultural control) affirms that; "Adequate food safety relies on clean production methods with high animal welfare, good disease resistance and traceability, and clear labeling guidelines, not just chemical washes at the end of the chain." The debate surrounding this practice focuses on two main issues: 1.Is it effective? Studies conducted by the US university show that bacteria such as listeria and salmonella are active even after washing with chlorinated water. Washing with chlorine simply makes it impossible to detect them in the laboratory, creating the false impression that the bird is free of bacteria. 2.Does it hide animal abuse? If the hygiene and welfare standards of the farms were high and ensured the wholesomeness of future human and pet food, there would be no need to wash it with chlorine, since it would not contain harmful bacteria. From this perspective, the practice would not be necessary unless one seeks to hide a low quality of hygiene and animal welfare in the entire production process, such as cleaning waste and exposure to sunlight. In general, when chlorinated chicken is used is because they have previously been given antibiotics to stop possible infections due to hygiene conditions. Thus, bathing with chlorinated water is a much cheaper process than using hygiene measures throughout the chain. For their part, United States agencies such as the NCN cite several scientific studies that confirm that this practice does nothing more than protect the health of both humans and pets that consume food with chicken remains. They add, they ensure that this substance is present in an insignificant quantity, so it does not modify the taste, texture or color of the final product. And while the FDA regulates the use of this technique, there is still the risk that producers will violate the rules. In cases where chicken contains a high amount of chlorine, it can start to develop carcinogens. And in Latin America, what is the situation? The consumption of chicken in Latin American countries such as Brazil or Argentina even doubles the consumption of European countries. Even so, the European market has potential, and imports of this bird are expected to increase, as long as it meets the requirements. For example, Argentina imports a small quantity of poultry animals, and what is routinely controlled is the absence of pathogenic microorganisms such as: Salmonellas ssp, Escherichia Coli ssp, Coliforms, Enterobacteria, fungi, yeasts, Listeria, etc. In conclusion Beyond the perspective of each country, the truth is that the United States, together with Brazil, continue to be the countries with the most chicken exports. Regarding our industry in particular, the most sensible thing will be to deep in the knowledge that producers have about the ingredients and animals that are used when producing pet food, since, as we well know, chicken is the most widely used in the pet food sector. As we discussed in a previous article when we discussed sustainability in the pet food industry, any change, improvement or ban that is implemented in the human food production chain will consequently affect pet food suppliers, due to the large quantity of bits and pieces that are incorporated into pet food because they are discarded from the human food production chain. Did you know anything about this debate? Tell us your opinion; we read you in the comments. By: All Pet Food

Pet Food high in animal protein? Challenges and advantages
Animal Origin
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4+ MIN

Pet Food high in animal protein? Challenges and advantages

The Pet Food Industry market is constantly growing and transforming. Consumers' wishes are becoming more and more specific, and as the demand for vegan pet food expands, so does the demand for food with a high content of meat protein. In this article we will talk about what are the challenges to produce and manufacture this type of food, as well as the advantages they have for future consumers: pets. Generally, a pet food is considered to be high in meat or animal protein content when its formula is 30% or more fresh meat. The expanded trend for consumers to opt for increasingly premium pet foods places the responsibility of manufacturers and veterinary nutritionists to seek continuous improvements in ingredients, nutritional quality, and palatability in order to stay within competitive market and be chosen for the quality of their product, beyond packaging or price. So much so that some large producers are already testing innovative formulas that arise from looking for: • Higher quality, incorporating more mechanically boned skeletal muscle and primary organs. • The development of non-traditional formulas, such as grain-free or with a limited quantity. • New shapes for dry food, such as a crouton or bone. • The one that concerns us in this article: an increase in the percentage of fresh meat (frozen, not frozen or dehydrated), of up to 75%. What is the challenge in the production of pet food high in meat protein? Logically, and as in any area of life, when innovating, new problems arise to overcome or solve, and the increase in meat content presents a unique challenge from a manufacturing point of view: extrusion. "High-meat dry food can be produced with a single-screw, mid-cut extruder, as long as the ingredients are used dry." Says Dave Albin of Insta-Pro International. However, the challenge arises when working with raw and wet ingredients, because according to Dave, "the moisture and fat in raw ingredients from animals reduce friction in the extruder barrel, making it difficult (and almost impossible) to reach the necessary cooking temperature'. As well as producers seek to innovate in their formulas, manufacturers of the machinery necessary for that production must to accompany and allow the market to update their offer. To increase the meat content in pet food, a twin screw extruder has a processing advantage (over single screw ones) thanks to its better mixing and kneading ability. The keys to safe innovation and transformation, according to industry experts, include considering: new requirements in formulas, the development of appropriate hardware, effective process control, and concrete and detailed specifications of the final product. What are the benefits of high animal protein feed, worthy of such changes and innovations in the industry? Protein is essential for healthy growth; and it is the main source of energy for an animal. Food high in meat protein is beneficial because: It refers to the natural diet: a grain-free and protein-based feed is the closest thing for a pet, today, to the style of natural animal feeding: the carnivore. In fact, many veterinary nutritionists say that the ideal is to imitate, as much as possible, how they would feed themselves (as their previous generations did), since their digestive systems have changed very little. According to this line, these professionals maintain that dogs and cats should eat food with 60% meat. Helps Weight Loss: overweight pets can achieve healthy weight loss through a high protein (and calorie restricted) diet. Also, in addition to promoting the loss of body fat, it helps maintain lean body mass. On the other hand, a food high in meat protein generates a higher caloric expenditure and a greater feeling of fullness and satisfaction. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition certifies that dogs fed by a diet high in protein and low in carbohydrates perceive a greater loss of body fat and a better maintenance of lean body mass. Supplement their nutritional needs: dogs need 22 amino acids, 12 of which they can produce on their own. There are 10 essential amino acids that it´s necessary to obtain through food, and they are: arginine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan and valine. All of these are found in the protein of meat. Helps delay or slow down aging: as pets get older, they need to consume more and more protein to maintain healthy body condition. This will prevent the loss of muscle mass, since they will obtain the adequate amino acids for good maintenance. Helps puppies: on the one hand, a puppy dog, for example, needs more protein during its first stage of growth and development. Accordingly, the diet of a pregnant dog should be high in protein, as well as rich in nutrients, fat and calories. Regenerates the muscles of active pets: when an animal exercises or has periods of high activity, its muscles work at a higher speed, that is, they build and break down muscle protein more quickly. The amino acids present in proteins promote muscle growth and recovery; a high protein content provides what is necessary for the reconstruction and replacement of muscle tissues. As the demand for pet food high in meat protein grows steadily, the industry must work to be prepared for new challenges. As Dave Albin states, "High-meat pet foods and treats will continue to expand into both dry and wet products". Therefore, the best way to continue within the competitive circle of supply and demand is to make the best effort to adapt and provide the final consumer with what they want and need. Are you already offering a pet food of this style? By: All Pet Food  

Insect-based pet food?
Formulation
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5+ MIN

Insect-based pet food?

In one of our recent articles we tell you about how we could reduce the pollution and waste that our industry produces. Now, there is a growing trend that we do not name you and that could positively impact the reduction of waste from the production of pet food: insect-based pet food. In this article we will tell you all about this new trend and we will bring you the examples of companies that are already implementing it. First of all … Would there be a demand for an insect-based pet food? To make any type of investment in machinery, research or innovation, it is necessary to know whether or not what you want to implement will be in great demand in the future. In the case of food for dogs and cats based on insect protein, there is a barrier to overcome: the 'disgust factor'. Eating insects is not culturally normalized in the West, not even for pets. Not to mention the people! However, the truth is that more than once, probably, pet owners saw their companions hunt or catch an insect that was walking in the garden or on the terrace. And it is also true that, surely, someone has been heard shouting 'oh, how disgusting! Leave that". From this point of view, companies and manufacturers that decide to include this ingredient in their food formulas have to take into account informing and educating about the benefits in order to break this stigma. Now, let's see what is beneficial about this practice: Why use insect protein in pet food formulas? The answer is simple: sustainability. Replacing animal meat and protein with insects for pet food contributes positively to the sustainability of the production chain. Why? It is already known that the amount of inputs and resources that are needed for the production of meat is very high, taking into account from the food and fertilizers for the animals to the packaging and transport to the sales centers. Conventional industrial agriculture requires large amounts of energy, water and land, and even the welfare of livestock and its polluting effects remain a matter of debate to this day. It is estimated that between 12% and 20% of the meat produced worldwide is destined to feed domestic animals. Protix, the Dutch company that claims to have the largest insect farm in the world, estimates that, compared to beef, insect-based foods use 2% of land space and 4% of water for every kilogram of protein. Are these numbers not sustainable enough? As if that's not enough, insects don't need fertilizers or pesticides, and they produce very little methane and ammonia emissions. The founder of Protix states: 'All over the world we are contributing to the warming of the atmosphere and consuming the Earth. The problem is that we have to continue feeding a population that needs protein. You have to do something different, and insects are part of the solution'. In the same vein, the president of the British Association of Veterinarians, stated: 'There is a really exciting future for the use of insect proteins in companion animals. It is essential to find sources of food that do not deplete the soil or water, or drive climate change'. In addition, three other benefits emerge from this main benefit: • Greater profitability: by needing fewer inputs and resources for its production, costs are reduced and profitability could grow. • Increase in demand: this characteristic could positively impact attracting more millennial buyers, the age range with the most pet owners today; these types of owners are even willing to pay more for a better quality or more sustainable product. This group also includes the majority of vegetarian cat owners: since felines do need to obtain taurine from meat protein, they may prefer to give their pets food based on insects rather than with beef, chicken, or fish. • Nutritional quality: besides being a good source of protein, insects contain fats, fatty acids, minerals and vitamins. The amount of these nutrients varies between different species. According to the FAO, the nutritional value of insects does not differ from the nutritional value of other meat sources such as chicken, cow, pork and fish. And in the world, how is the situation? For now, in the United States, the largest pet food market, insect protein is not yet allowed in daily pet food. Some insect-based treats have been released, but no more than that. On the other hand, the European Union a few years ago allowed the use of insect proteins in pet food. Initially, this encouraged the development of the odd dog food here with the ingredient. In the UK, for example, food with up to 40% insect protein can already be seen on shelves. What happens is that still, due to lack of mass production and infrastructure, this type of food is up to 4 times more expensive than an average food. Insect protein in pet food is also making its way onto the market in Germany, France and Italy. Companies that are dabbling in insect protein We bring you the example of some companies that are already innovating in this trend, to inspire you and see that change is possible, in case you want to implement it in your company. • Ynsect is an insect farming company born in 2011 that uses, unlike many others, mealworms as its main "livestock". Their insect-based pet food is suitable for dogs, cats, rodents, birds, and reptiles. The product comes in powder and oil form (replacing less sustainable oils like palm oil). It also produces a natural fertilizer. • AgriProtein has its main farm in Cape Town, South Africa. It uses black soldier flies and their larvae to turn organic food waste into meal for fish, poultry, pigs and pet food. • Protix Biosystems, the company founded in 2009 that we already named you, is the creator of Its ProteinX, one of the main ingredients of a new premium dog food that is marketed in the United Kingdom. He also developed a moist food beneficial for intestinal health. • Founded in 2015, Wilder & Harrier of Montreal is developing a line of insect-based dog food and treats made from black soldier flies, crickets and mealworms. • Yora Pet Foods offers a kibble made from insect protein (black soldier fly), oats, potatoes and vegetables. In conclusion As much as owners humanize pets, cats and dogs will continue to chase and eat all kinds of insects that come their way. If we want to go back to nature and feed pets "just as they would in nature," then what would be more appropriate than insects?   Do you think it will be implemented in the market? We read you. Tell us your opinion about this new trend. By: All Pet Food

Petsource by Scoular facility to begin Operations in October
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Petsource by Scoular facility to begin Operations in October

The Scoular Company celebrated the completion of its $50 million freeze-dried pet food ingredient manufacturing facility in Seward on Sept. 1, a new business division named Petsource by Scoular. The facility will begin operations in October. The Scoular subsidiary will develop, procure, freeze-dry and package high-protein ingredients — such as freeze-dried whole organ meats and meat analogues — for various pet food manufacturers at this new facility. It will also have an in-house testing laboratory to help develop and analyze its pet food ingredients. 'We are excited to drive innovation in the pet food industry and encouraged by our customers' enthusiasm for the capabilities within our new facility,' said Amy Patterson, general manager of Petsource.  'We look forward to creating new partnerships with our customers by bringing product development together with meat processing, freeze drying and packaging to provide a complete freeze-dried pet food supply chain.' The ribbon-cutting ceremony was attended by Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, US Congressman Don Bacon, who represents Nebraska's second district and serves on the House Agriculture Committee, and other local civic leaders. The facility spans 105,000 sq ft and, once fully operational, will employ up to 100 people. 'Scoular has been creating opportunities for Nebraskans for over a century,' Ricketts said. 'The Petsource operation brings great jobs to Seward, and we're grateful for Scoular's ongoing commitment to growing its business in the Cornhusker State.'Scoular first announced its plans for Petsource and the Seward facility in March 2019 and broke ground in Seward in August 2019. 'Nebraska is the center of agriculture in the United States because of the quality commodities we grow and raise along with the innovation that is generated by such companies as Scoular,' Rep. Bacon added. 'This Petsource facility highlights the rich resources available in our community but also the brilliant and ingenious talent produced by our Nebraska educational institutions.' Scoular worked with the City of Seward, Seward County Chamber & Development Partnership, the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, and Gray Construction, the design firm tasked with engineering, architecture and construction of the Petsource facility. By Jordan Tyler Pet Food Processing

Organic and Natural Pet Food Market: Growth, Opportunity and Forecast 2020-2025
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

Organic and Natural Pet Food Market: Growth, Opportunity and Forecast 2020-2025

The global organic and natural pet food market grew at a CAGR of nearly 12% during 2014-2019. Natural pet food consists of organic ingredients that are free from synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, antibiotics, artificial coloring, and chemical by-products. Organic pet food offers several health benefits for pets, including boosting immunity, reducing skin ailments and allergies, minimizing digestive disorders, improving life expectancy, and maintaining a healthy weight.  Based on the texture, the food mostly comes in the form of snacks, treats, kibble, liquid supplements, pellets, etc., available in bags, pouches, cans, and trays of varying sizes and shapes. The increasing demand for organic and natural pet food can be attributed to the growing number of pet ownerships coupled with rising consumer awareness towards pet health. Additionally, rapid urbanization coupled with the high prevalence of family nuclearization has led to the rising adoption of pets, across both developed and emerging regions.  In line with this, the elevating consumer living standards supported by their increasing disposable income levels have propelled the per capita expenditures on premium pet care products. The prevalent trend of pet humanization where the pet owners treat their pets as a family member, is also driving the demand for high-quality and organic pet food. Apart from this, the wide availability of natural pet food across several distribution channels coupled with the emergence of e-commerce platforms has also augmented the market growth.  Moreover, the rising demand for pet food with customized diets and pet meal plans accompanied by door-step delivery is driving the online sales of pet food. In addition to this, numerous celebrity endorsements along with various awareness programs are promoting the demand for nutrient rich pet food that is healthy and safe for consumption.  Competitive Landscape: The competitive landscape of the industry has also been examined with some of the key players being PetGuard Holdings LLC, Newman's Own LLC, Nestle, Evanger's Dog & Cat Food Company, Inc., Lily's Kitchen, Avian Organics, Castor & Pollux Natural Petworks, Yarrah etc Breakup by Ingredient: Natural Organic Breakup by Pet Type: Dog Food Cat Food Others Breakup by Product Type: Dry Pet Food Wet and Canned Pet Food Snacks and Treats Breakup by Packaging Type: Bags Cans Pouches Boxes Breakup by Distribution Channel: Supermarkets and Hypermarkets Specialty Stores Online Stores Others by Research and Markets

What Cat Owners Want in Natural Foods
Vegetable Origin
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6+ MIN

What Cat Owners Want in Natural Foods

As cat owners seek the best nutrition possible for their pets, natural diets quickly come into play, and qualities such as safety, sustainability and high protein are sought after. The natural cat foods category is experiencing many of the same trends as other pet food segments, according to industry insiders. For example, product manufacturing transparency is a top concern among consumers, pet specialty retailers report. 'Locally and ethically sourced, traceability and sustainability are the hot trends,' said Dave Fedorchak, vice president of procurement and research and development for PetGuard, a Sewickley, Pa.-based manufacturer of natural pet foods. Mary Helen Horn, president of Ziwi USA, an Overland Park, Kan.-based manufacturer, agreed, adding that cat owners 'want clean, safe and sustainable sourcing from countries and companies that are known to be trustworthy.' This focus on safety and sustainability doesn't end with the food itself. Even pet food packaging is on the cat-owning customer's radar. 'With the increase in global sustainability awareness and efforts, a large majority of customers prefer packaging that follows the reduce, reuse, recycle methodology,' Horn said. 'Many pet parents around the world want to see less plastic and more packaging that is recyclable or has multiuse functionality.' However, the desire to protect the environment does not trump demand for food packaging that is easy to open and store, insiders said. 'They're looking for packaging that is recyclable and functional,' Fedorchak said. 'Our food comes in cans that are easily recycled, and our dry food bags are resealable, which means they can last on the shelves after they're already opened.' Taylor Foster, store manager at Bon Pet Supply in Colorado Springs, Colo., reported, 'Tetra Paks are increasing in popularity because of their earth friendliness and the fact they can be sealed easily for storing until the next feeding.' Lisa McKitrick, co-owner of Boofy's Best for Pets, a pet supply store in Albuquerque, N.M., said that, over the years, wet food pouches have become quite popular. And cat owners shopping at The Natural Pet Outlet's two Connecticut locations appreciate easy-open cans, said partner Ray Arabia. 'A lot of customers are looking for pop-top containers or a block of meat they can cut and refreeze themselves,' he said. As for the contents of the packages, pet owners are seeking minimally processed, natural ingredients, high-protein content, variety and function. 'Pet parents are doing more research and getting better educated on the nutritional needs of their cats, so they are buying higher-quality products that contain more meat, without all the fillers, gums and binders,' Horn said. Chanda Leary-Coutu, director of consumer experience for Wellness Natural Pet Food, a brand of Tewksbury, Mass.-based manufacturer WellPet, reported seeing 'cat parents [looking] to experiment with trending ingredients,' such as incorporating grains into cats' diets and seeing 'wholesome ingredients that they'd eat themselves, like flaxseeds, carrots and cranberries.' At Bon Pet Supply, natural cat food shoppers want lower-carb diets. 'Grain free versus grain in doesn't seem to be as big of a concern as it used to be, as long as the ingredient panel reflects a wholesomely sourced, high-protein-content, low-carb diet,' Foster said. 'Limitations in ingredients is also popular, where people are asking for only one category of protein—poultry or fish or red meat exclusive.' Ultimately, owners want a healthier cat, Arabia said. To achieve this, he finds more customers switching from dry food to wet food, and then migrating to raw. 'They want a food that won't cause UTIs or obesity,' he said. 'They want fewer vet bills, and they think more natural and raw food will do that.' Education - A Knowledgeable Staff Better Educates Customers Nutrition is a critical factor for health and longevity, so pet specialty retailers and natural pet food manufacturers place a huge emphasis on education. '[It's] key to a consumer's understanding of why natural foods are so beneficial to pets,' said Chanda Leary-Coutu, director of consumer experience for Wellness Natural Pet Food, a brand of Tewksbury, Mass.-based manufacturer WellPet. 'Learning about the key health and overall wellness benefits that natural recipes have over other products that may contain fillers and artificial components is likely to be the reason why consumers choose to purchase natural recipes over anything else.' Because of this, both manufacturers and retailers make consumer education a priority. The first stop is store staff, industry insiders said. 'We want our retail partners to be as passionate about our food as we are, so we've put in place store associate trainings for their employees so that they can understand all things PetGuard,' said Dave Fedorchak, vice president of procurement and research and development for the Sewickley, Pa.-based pet food company. 'That way, if someone has a question or concern about our food formulas, they'll be prepared with the information to not only assuage concerns, but to recommend our food.' Some manufacturers offer in-person training, while others provide digital options or a combination of both. 'We partner with our retailers to provide in-person training as well as our new online training module that educates retailers and their team on the benefits of a natural cat food diet and proper pet nutrition,' said Mary Helen Horn, president of Ziwi USA, an Overland Park, Kan.-based pet food manufacturer. Video is a significant communication technique for consumers, said Lisa McKitrick, co-owner of Boofy's Best for Pets, a pet supply store in Albuquerque, N.M., so she asks brand reps 'to participate in live video broadcasts to talk about their foods.' Still, video and other digital options do not eliminate the importance of face-to-face communication, retailers said. 'An educated sales staff is the most effective way to introduce customers to natural diets,' McKitrick said. 'And we expect our team to speak knowledgeably about the foods we offer as well as pet nutrition in general. 'We want all of our customers to be able to read an ingredient panel and know what constitutes a 'good' ingredient and a 'bad' ingredient,' she added. 'Decisions should never be made based on a cute commercial or misleading packaging, but that's what influences many purchases.' Testimonials from staff educate customers and build trust and repeat business. 'We share our personal experiences with them about issues we've had with lesser-quality foods and hope they understand that we aren't just 'making a sale' when they come in,' said Taylor Foster, store manager at Bon Pet Supply in Colorado Springs, Colo. 'We want what is best for their cats, so we suggest and recommend things we actually think are helpful and good. This helps build trust between us and them, and then they are more comfortable asking for help and more inclined to take our advice.' Defining the Terms: Juggling Organic and Natural
In the natural pet food category, there remains much confusion. Because the term 'natural' is unregulated, definitions can vary and remain subjective, industry insiders said. Add in the term 'organic,' and customers can get overwhelmed. To simplify things, Dave Fedorchak, vice president of procurement and research and development for PetGuard, a natural pet food manufacturer in Sewickley, Pa., describes the terms this way: 'Organic diets refer to the way that produce and livestock are grown and raised, whereas natural is food without artificial ingredients, coloring, flavors or preservatives.' Sometimes, consumers confuse the two. 'Some customers think that 'natural' is synonymous with 'organic' and will come in asking for organic food,' said Lisa McKitrick, co-owner of Boofy's Best for Pets, a pet supply store in Albuquerque, N.M. 'Then they get sticker shock!' To help customers with their sticker shock, McKitrick spends time educating customers on the differences. 'Organic cat foods are made from ingredients that have been raised or grown without synthetic pesticides, synthetic fertilizers, antibiotics and added hormones,' she said. 'The foods will also be GMO free. At least 95 percent of the ingredients in the food must be organic for the food to be certified and labeled as organic. 'When the difference is explained, most realize that 'natural' is what they are seeking and that there are plenty of excellent options for almost any budget,' she added. Helping consumers understand natural foods can mean breaking down misinformation. 'The priority and challenge in educating pet parents about natural food is ensuring they have access to both appropriate and factual information,' said Mary Helen Horn, president of Ziwi USA, a pet food manufacturer in Overland Park, Kan. 'In today's age of the internet and access to so many social media sites, we have encountered and spoken to so many pet parents who have been misinformed or misguided on the principles of feeding a natural food with natural ingredients.' by SANDY CHEBAT   
 

Performance Measurement in Pet Food
Formulation
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5+ MIN

Performance Measurement in Pet Food

It is very important to constantly monitor the performance of all our products for the duration of their life cycle. Obviously, there are tests that are only performed prior to launch, but there are others that must be done regularly to know that we are meeting the attributes that we originally designed. Definition of performance Regardless of the work carried out by the Marketing team regarding image communication and product characteristics on the packaging, the expected scope in terms of its performance with buyers and pets must be clearly established. A primary challenge for the pet owner to cover is to meet the expectations of food shapes, textures, colors and aroma; if this is not achieved, the product will never be offered to the dog or cat. Regarding pets, all products must meet a minimum of attributes in order to be successful, which are mainly the following: compliance with the nutritional requirements for which the food was designed, acceptance and preference of the food, quantity and stool consistency. There are attributes established in certain types of specialized diets (prescription foods) that must be evaluated with specifically developed protocols to test their performance. Compliance with nutritional requirements There are different entities worldwide (AAFCO, NRC, FEDNA) that have established minimum and maximum levels of nutrients for the different stages of life of pets; it is very important to take them as a reference to correctly design products that meet the expected nutritional performance; Additionally, there are also very valuable specific publications with update reports and suggestions of levels of certain nutrients. The AAFCO establishes animal testing protocols to validate foods designed for stages of growth, pregnancy, lactation, and digestibility in dogs and cats. General Before launching, it is very important that an industrial batch of food is generated that meets the specifications established by the technical areas (formula, quality of ingredients, process controls, etc.); This product must remain in the cellar, preferably in its final packaging and with standard storage conditions for a period of 4 to 6 weeks prior to evaluation, this in order to try to 'tie' the time spent in the canal distribution the food of the competition against which it will be tested. Additionally, we must have the basic analytical values ​​of said product (proximal chemical analysis). Parallel to the previous action, it is necessary to evaluate against which product or products of the competition will be compared. It is suggested to choose the local market leader. Of course, said product must belong to the same market segment in which our new product will participate. Remember that the competition is constantly improving their food, so it is very important to repeat the acceptance and preference tests every 6 months. The animal colony that is used for the tests is also very important since there are some breeds with a tendency to overeat, others that are easy to have digestion problems, poor stool consistency, etc. Acceptance and preference The acceptance test is carried out in order to document the quantity of food consumed of the product to be evaluated during a specific period of time and in turn compare it with the quantities of the competitor's food consumed during the same period of time. An individual food is always tested per test and colonies of between 20 and 40 dogs or cats are generally used and the periods to be evaluated range from 7 to 15 days per food. It is very important to document the individual data of each animal in order to have a greater number of data. The preference test in its two-bowl version is the most widely used by the industry to assess the performance of one food compared to another. It uses 20 to 40 animals and its duration can be 2 or 4 days. A known amount of food is offered in each bowl, always taking care that this amount is more than the pet can consume during the session. The bowls are presented aligned in front of the animal, one on the right and one on the left, taking care to rotate the position of the bowls the next day. The amount of time that the food is offered for consumption should be according to the animal's physiology and it is generally accepted to use between 15 and 20 minutes for dogs and 17 to 24 hours for cats. Obviously both dogs and cats should be treated as individuals in order to have more observations, avoiding group feeding. At the end of the test we will have a lot of valuable information to make decisions. In general, total consumption is reported both in quantity and percentage per animal and in group, as well as the consumption radius (higher / lower). It is recommended to assign a percentage difference in the consumption of both diets that determines whether the animal preferred one diet or the other; this value is established subjectively (example: 20%) and consists of concluding if the difference between the consumption in percentage of both foods is less than 20%, then it is considered a tie, of course, if it is higher, it is reported as a preference. At the end of each acceptance and preference test, it is suggested to carry out a statistical test in order to determine the strength of the results. Amount and consistency of stool A performance attribute expected by pet owners is that the food generates little amount of feces with a firm consistency. Of course this is highly variable depending on the market segment in which the product participates.
To carry out this type of tests it is recommended to have an animal colony of at least 20 individuals. The food is provided freely accessible and an adaptation period of 3 days is allowed at least before starting to monitor the results. After those 3 days, the quality of the feces of each dog should be monitored. This is done by comparing the stool with a table of reference photos. In general, the stool scale determines that non-formed and liquid stools have a rating of 0, while dry and well-formed stools have a value of 100. The other values ​​on the scale are 25, 50 and 75. There are Available photographic scales made by some manufacturers that can be very useful to us to qualify the feces.
 
In conclusion, it is very important to constantly test our products in order to know that we are meeting the performance expectations expected by our buyers. Author: Miguel López Advisor and Nutritionist of Pets Email: [email protected] Source: All Extruded

The Ingredients that are making their way in the Pet Food Industry, did you know them?
Vegetable Origin
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4+ MIN

The Ingredients that are making their way in the Pet Food Industry, did you know them?

Trends are, in general terms, what mark the path of innovation and growth of companies. In our pet food industry, alternative fruits, vegetables, and proteins are becoming more prevalent. In this article we tell you about trends in new ingredients in pet food. As we mentioned in a previous article, the type of food that is chosen for a pet increasingly reflects the style of eating that its owners practice on a daily basis; This is already an indisputable trend that is constantly increasing. A spokesperson for the US Highbush Blueberry Council says: 'A few years ago there was very little fruit in pet products. Back then, the idea of ​​fruits and vegetables in pet food for cats and dogs seemed unusual, yet intriguing to many in the industry'. More fruits among the components of pet food Fruits as an ingredient are a relatively new category in the content of pet food; have been added to the classic ingredients embodying the concept of health, since it has been proven that the nutrients and fiber of the fruit increase the overall nutritional value and, in some cases, improve the flavor, texture, color and control of moisture. Furthermore, these ingredients allow to take advantage of inherent nutraceutical or phytonutrient qualities, especially fruits rich in antioxidants. The fruits and components that are being used the most today are: Strawberry or strawberry, raspberry and blueberry puree, since it is rich in fiber, and both dogs and cats reap the benefits of fiber.
The apple and its dried version, due to its high fiber value, as well as its water content that helps to maintain humidity in wet foods.
Citrus and its fiber: In early 2019, the citrus fiber used in the production of pet food had increased by 437%. More vegetables among the components of pet food Vegetables are currently being incorporated into pet food recipes as well, as they offer significant nutritional benefits. This change occurs essentially because there are certain nutrients that animals cannot obtain from ingredients that come from animals. Thus, accompanying the trend of choosing organic and low-processed products, the market is replacing the adhesion of synthetic vitamins and minerals with those that can be obtained from organic fruits and vegetables and natural supplements. Vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and antioxidants can also help pets overcome and fight serious diseases, such as cancer. The vegetables and their components that are being used the most today are: Dark green leafy vegetables, such as broccoli or kale, for their high content of calcium, potassium and magnesium. Carrot and celery Alternative plant proteins Dogs and cats are considered carnivores, so meat is an essential component of their diet. Still, they don't always have to come from an animal. Some time ago, in the United States, work has been done on injecting genes from animal muscle proteins into microbes like yeast, so that they can then be fed and fermented. This results in proteins nutritionally identical to those from meat. In parallel, pets that are allergic to conventional ingredients are pushing the development of exotic proteins to continue to please pets' taste buds while improving their health.  What are the disadvantages of these changes? Although it is true that, like people, animals need fruits and vegetables in their daily diet to have a balanced and nutritious diet, when it comes to replacing a percentage of meat products with more vegetables and fruits, a problem arises: The sustainability. The pet food industry is a fundamental part of the chain of sustainability and circular economy, essentially due to the use of meat by-products that are considered waste not suitable for human consumption. Manufacturers use the parts of animals that humans do not consume to produce pet food since, despite being 'waste' to humans, they are nutrient-packed components. For example, poultry fat is commonly used in pet food to add calories and flavor chicken. The human consumption of these animals leaves internal organs, feathers and many other parts unconsumed. If it weren't because they are largely used to make pet food, these parts would form an unthinkable amount of waste. That said, we can affirm that yes, fruits and vegetables are essentially necessary in the feeding of pets, and their increase and incorporation are beneficial for the general health and well-being of domestic animals.
Even so, the great challenge of the industry will be to find a new destination or purpose for the waste from human meat, or a way to coexist with the increase in vegetable ingredients in the pet food market. In conclusion It should be noted that companies in the industry have a responsibility, in a way, to educate consumers about the changes and improvements they make in their products and food. They can do this through their networks, their packaging, and by providing accurate information to local sellers and retailers, who are closest to the end consumer. On the other hand, while pet owners are increasingly increasing the preference for ingredients of plant, organic and natural origin, the real reason is that they believe it will be the most beneficial for their pets. Thus, the question that arises is: will it improve the health of my pet? Will it present fewer digestive problems? Will it have more energy? After all, the function of the food formula is what is really important. In any case, it is correct to affirm that the components of plant origin are much more than a mere trend, but rather a beneficial addition to the health and well-being of pets. Are you already aware of these new additions to the industry? Tell us, we are interested in knowing your point of view. Author: All Extruded

Bringing back the Science in Pet Food
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Bringing back the Science in Pet Food

Pet food studies can be quite expensive, but are pivotal to bringing the science back to the conversation before pet owners decide themselves what's best for their pet. This was stated by Dr Melissa Brookshire, founder of North River Enterprises, a US company serving the pet food industry with veterinary customer support and regulatory compliance advice. Brookshire spoke at the pet food session at ONE: The Alltech Ideas Conference, taking place this week in Lexington, Kentucky and focused on the humanisation of pets, the effect on pet nutrition and whether we should consider this as a dangerous trend. Exotic new meats Brookshire explained that around 90% of pet owners say that pets are family and even call them their 'fur babies'. In the US, households with pets outnumbered households with kids by some 30 million. Nearly 70% of US households own a pet. Spending on pets totalled 72 billion US dollars in 2017, up with 8% from 2016. Pet food makes up to 42% of total pet spending. 'A result of this is that pet owners (also often called pet parents) increasingly want to choose what they believe is the healthiest option for their pet's diet. This is because pet owners look at animals in a human way when it comes to nutrition. They also, for example, look at exotic new meat sources for their pets such as kangaroo or wild boar meat. Just because we – humans – also want a change of diet every now and then and this is hence projected on what people think or assume that pets want or need,' Brookshire explained. These unconventional meat sources are not studied for their effect on pets, and often they are included in the pet food in small amounts. Ancient grains and insect meal Brookshire: 'We also see a lot of things happening with grains in diet. The whole grain free pet food trend started around 10 years ago. Now, pet owners are also looking at ancient grains for their pets. A trend that is also seen in human nutrition. But is quinoa better than corn for example? It could be a better option at a low inclusion rate, but we just don't know if this is the case for higher inclusion rates in pet diets. Also new ingredients hit the market, such as insects (insect meal and/or oil). But we actually still don't know how it fits in the complete diet. We also see an increased spending on treats, toppers and broth products for pets. These snacks can be high in energy and these type of products can encourage the pets to eat more, which in turn can lead to obesity.' Bringing science back Brookshire believes that there are threats of the humanisation trend of pets. On top of that, there is a lot of misinformation everywhere and it is hard to change the perception of pet owners, once it is there, she said. 'The problem is that a lot of people (on the internet primarily) present themselves as pet food experts. What we see online is for example the negative comments about by-products for example. A lot of these so-called pet food 'experts' for example are very negative about the use of poultry by-products for pets. But this is not funded on any science,' Brookshire addressed. According to her, this misinformation is now replacing the facts and the science. This means we have to do more science and get the scientific facts out there. While there are published studies investigating how ingredients are digested and absorbed, there are very few studies that investigate the styles of diets over a long period of time. And sometimes even long term studies may not identify potential problems with new ingredients or combinations of ingredients. 'This is partly due to the fact that pet food studies can be quite expensive. At the same time, it is pivotal that we invest more in pet food studies so we can make a new story about the science behind the nutritional needs for pets. We need to bring back the science to the conversation. We need to re-focus on what truly is best for pets when it comes to nutrition and the feed ingredients used,' Brookshire concluded. by Emmy Koeleman -  All About Feed & Dairy Global

DSM to add world-leading animal nutrition and health specialty businesses with acquisition of Erber Group
Formulation
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3+ MIN

DSM to add world-leading animal nutrition and health specialty businesses with acquisition of Erber Group

Royal DSM, a global science-based company in Nutrition, Health and Sustainable Living, announces that it has reached agreement to acquire Erber Group for an enterprise value of €980m. The value of the transaction represents an EV/EBITDA multiple of about 14x the 2020 EBITDA (fiscal year ending September 2020). The transaction – which excludes two smaller units in the Erber Group – is expected to be earnings enhancing in the first year upon completion. Erber Group's specialty animal nutrition and health businesses, Biomin and Romer Labs, specialize primarily in mycotoxin risk management, gut health performance management, and food and feed safety diagnostic solutions, expanding DSM's range of higher value-add specialty solutions. Romer Labs also complements DSM's human nutrition and health offering to food industry customers. Sanphar and EFB, representing 7% of Erber Group's total sales, are not included in this transaction. The acquired businesses have combined sales of €330m and an Adjusted EBITDA margin above 20% for the twelve months to the end of March 2020, with a high single-digit organic sales growth rate over the past 5 years. The acquisition will be debt financed, with committed bridge financing in place. DSM continues to benefit from a strong balance sheet and remains committed to maintaining a strong investment grade credit profile. With state-of-the-art research and manufacturing facilities and approximately 1,200 employees around the world, the acquisition of Erber Group is a unique strategic opportunity that provides revenue-enhancing synergies from the combined offering, global customer base, and complementary geographic strengths. Austrian-based Erber Group offers DSM the opportunity to enter the mycotoxin risk management market as the world leader and extends the company's position as one of the top suppliers in the rapidly growing animal gut performance management market. Mycotoxins occur as a result of natural fungus contaminants in animal feed and threaten the health of both animals and humans. In addition to increasing the risk of illness, mycotoxins also reduce the nutritional value of feed. Biomin's patented and proprietary technology provides the most scientifically advanced mycotoxin protection available. Biomin is also a major producer of phytogenic and probiotic feed alternatives to antibiotics, which complements and strengthens DSM's position in the rapidly growing global eubiotics market for improving animal gut health. Romer Labs is at the forefront of diagnostic technology with innovative testing solutions for the analysis of mycotoxins in feed and food, food allergens and pathogens as well as veterinary drug residues, with accredited full-service labs in Austria, UK, USA and Singapore. DSM's extensive global network of food and beverage customers as well as feed customers stand to benefit from Romer Labs' expertise and the combined group's data-based quality assurance offering. The acquisition of Erber Group further strengthens DSM's expertise and reputation as a leading provider of animal health and nutrition solutions for farm productivity and sustainability, with an emphasis on emissions reduction, feed consumption efficiency, and better use of water and land. Geraldine Matchett and Dimitri de Vreeze, Co-CEOs of DSM, said: 'These are great businesses with strong and sustained track records of profitable growth and attractive margins. Biomin and Romer Labs will help strengthen and accelerate the growth of our specialty animal nutrition and health offering, including our big data and diagnostic capabilities, and it is exciting to be entrusted to take these family-founded businesses forward. It was immediately clear to us that the people at Erber Group share our purpose-led mission and will make a wonderful addition to DSM'. Dr. Erich Erber, Founder and President of Erber Group, commented: 'In DSM, I recognize the mutual values of sustainable stewardship that are so important to us. The world must reduce farming's environmental impact at the same time as increasing protein production to feed 10 billion people by 2050. To do that, we have to make sure protein is produced sustainably, using renewable ingredients as much as possible, while protecting the well-being of animals. DSM is the perfect home for our businesses, as Biomin and Romer Labs will be able to use their new scale to intensify our joint contribution to a more sustainable world's food supply'. The transaction, which remains subject to customary conditions, is expected to close in Q4 2020. by DSM

Busting the Myth of Carbohydrates in Pet Food
Cereals
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2+ MIN

Busting the Myth of Carbohydrates in Pet Food

Animal nutritionists promote the many benefits of carbohydrates in pet food, yet various pet-related blogs and websites seem to disparage them. This article examines the evidence refuting some of the commonly heard arguments. Defining carbohydrates Many of the arguments on pet websites against carbohydrates in pet food are along similar lines: 'Wolves didn't raid corn fields. Carbs are not required and therefore don't provide value. The more protein, the better.' Or: 'You would never see a wild cat chasing down a herd of biscuits running across the plains of Africa, or dehydrating a mouse and topping it off with corn meal.' Such discussions are not helped by the fact that the terms 'carbs', 'sugar', 'starch' and 'fibre' are often mixed up when referring to pet food ingredients. FEDIAF has attempted to address these misconceptions by clarifying that carbohydrates are a group of compounds with a common biochemical structure, but divided into three main categories: sugars, starch and fibres. They all have an important role to play in pet nutrition. But in the context of carbohydrates in pet foods, these are not sugars but mainly digestible starches and non-digestible dietary fibres. Starch Domesticated cats and dogs have evolved over thousands of years, and they no longer have the same dietary requirements as their ancestors living in the wilderness. Today's cats and dogs have the necessary enzymes to break starch down into smaller molecules, which can then produce energy for their cells. An additional benefit is that starch as an energy source allows for a lower-fat diet and can thus help to reduce the risk of obesity. Fibres In contrast, fibres are not digestible by cats and dogs. However, they do have several benefits. Prebiotic fibres promote the growth of beneficial intestinal microbiota through fermentation and can therefore help reduce harmful bacteria colonisation. The fermentation products of fibre are beneficial to large intestinal cells. Non-fermentable fibre promotes regular bowel movements and regulates intestinal transit. Moreover, since fibre provides almost no calories to the dog and cat, it can be used to deliver bulk and satiation for pets and can help in weight management. FEDIAF The FEDIAF Scientific Advisory Board, composed of nutritionists from European universities and veterinary schools, summarised these conclusions in a Scientific Expert Review. This was followed by a pet owner-friendly factsheet to help clear up misunderstandings about the valuable role of carbohydrates in healthy cat and dog nutrition. Addtitional white papers can be downloaded at fediaf.org  by Global pets

Wet Pet Food Market - Global Analysis and Forecasts to 2027
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Wet Pet Food Market - Global Analysis and Forecasts to 2027

The global Wet Pet Food Market accounted for US$ 22,218.1 Mn in 2018 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.7% during the forecast period 2019 - 2027, to account for US$ 36,406.5 Mn by 2027. Wet pet foods are a good source of hydration for pet animals that show reluctance towards drinking adequate amounts of water. The contents of wet pet foods usually include chunks in gravy, chunks in jelly, casserole and meatloaf formats. The wet pet food is increasingly being preferred by pet owners as they help to boosts energy, builds muscles and lean mass, and stimulates the overall growth mechanism in animals. Consumption of wet pet food helps to provide the necessary nutrients such as proteins, vitamins, and minerals and keep pet healthy and hydrated. Moreover, such kinds of foods are considered as an ideal option for pets who cannot chew properly due to missing teeth, improper adjustment of jaws, or other related pet concerns. Such advantages offered by wet pet food makes them a popular and attractive option and the best source of hydration. Based on the product, wet pet food market is segmented into dog food, cat food, and others. In 2018, the dog food segment held a considerably large share of the global wet pet food market. The rising trend of nuclear families, rapid humanization of pets, and increased awareness about pet health have raised the demand for wet food for dogs in recent years. Furthermore, initiatives by various non-governmental organizations such as building rescue shelters, and growing compassion and care toward the health of stray dogs have driven the demand for high-quality dog food, which would, in turn, propel the sales of wet dog food. North America holds the largest share of the global wet pet food market and is projected to maintain its dominance over the forecast period. The growth of the wet pet food market in this region is primarily attributed to the presence of a large consumer base and high pet ownership in the US. Major market players present in North America wet pet food market includes Blue Buffalo Co., Ltd., FirstMate Pet Foods, and Mars, Inc., among others. These players are constantly working towards the innovations in new product developments of wet pet food with improved characteristics and high qualities. In the European region, the UK holds the largest share of the wet pet food market. The wet pet food demand in the UK is driven by the increasing population of pets. The pet food products have gained importance in the UK market owing increased focus of pet keepers towards healthy products along with empathy for pets. Moreover, the rise in disposable incomes of consumers in the UK has allowed the manufacturers to purchase better and healthy products for their pets in the UK. Some of the players present in the global wet pet food market are Blue Buffalo Co., Ltd., De Haan Petfood, FirstMate Pet Foods, Little BigPaw, Mars, Inc., Monge SPA, Petguard Holdings, LLC, Hill's Pet Nutrition, Inc., Nestlé Purina PetCare, and Butcher's Pet Care among others. The overall global wet pet food market size has been derived using both primary and secondary source. The research process begins with exhaustive secondary research using internal and external sources to obtain qualitative and quantitative information related to the wet pet food market. Also, multiple primary interviews were conducted with industry participants and commentators in order to validate data and analysis. The participants who typically take part in such a process include industry expert such as VPs, business development managers, market intelligence managers, and national sales managers, and external consultants such as valuation experts, research analysts, and key opinion leaders specializing in the wet pet food market. Reasons to Buy Highlights key business priorities in order to assist companies to realign their business strategies. The key findings and recommendations highlight crucial progressive industry trends in the global wet pet food market, thereby allowing players to develop effective long term strategies. Develop/modify business expansion plans by using substantial growth offering developed and emerging markets. Scrutinize in-depth the market trends and outlook coupled with the factors driving the market, as well as those hindering it. Enhance the decision-making process by understanding the strategies that underpin commercial interest with respect to products, segmentation and industry verticals. by Research and Markets All Extruded 

QRILL Pet: One Ingredient, Many Benefits
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

QRILL Pet: One Ingredient, Many Benefits

One of the challenges that many premium pet food brands face is to find an ingredient that will make their product stand out. Krill is a relative newcomer to the market and serves as a unique functional ingredient. However, what make this ingredient so unique? We have prepared a 60-second video for you, so you can learn about the key benefits in a fun and engaging way. A nutrient rich diet is important for all pets. One of those important and in fact most researched nutrients are omega-3 fatty acids. They have great health benefits for pets, including healthy organs, skin, and fur. Just like their pet parents, pets' bodies are unable to make omega-3s and they need a source that provides them with these essential fatty acids. However not all omega-3s are the same.  What makes the omega-3s in QRILL Pet special? Well, they are in the form of phospholipids. QRILL Pet is also a natural functional ingredient, made only of whole dried krill - pure nutrition for healthy pets. With our high-quality ingredient derived from Antarctic krill, we aim to enhance pet foods and keep pets strong and healthy. QRILL Pet is rich in:  Superior phospholipid omega-3s: the phospholipid-bound omega-3s are easily incorporated into cells and makes QRILL Pet an efficient source of these fatty acids. Marine proteins: QRILL Pet consists of 60% protein and these highly palatable marine proteins are the preferred choice of many dogs.  Natural choline: Choline is an important nutrient for pets, which impacts healthy brain development, muscle function, heart health, liver function as well as the nervous system.  Powerful astaxanthin: a strong and natural antioxidant. Astaxanthin helps to boost the pet's immune system and helps to prevent damaging effects of free radicals.  A new publication from Aker BioMarine unveils that the choline levels of Alaskan Huskies increased by 52 percent after receiving krill dietary supplement for six weeks Krill supports mindful choices  Making a positive impact in the world and making 'mindfull choices' is one of the biggest trends in recent years and we believe this trend will only grow and take new shapes in the years to come. Consumers wants healthy food choices, which at the same time gives them peace of mind in terms of environmental and ethical claims. By Aysen Korucu - Marketing Manager of Aker Biomarine Source: All Extruded

The Origin of Current Omega Fatty Acid Standards in Pet Food
Animal Origin
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The Origin of Current Omega Fatty Acid Standards in Pet Food

In 2015, AAFCO approved specific fatty acids ratios for pet foods. Omega fatty acids are used by the body to reduce inflammation and are building blocks for many biochemical pathways. Some of these fatty acids are essential, meaning the body cannot make its own. Diet is the richest source of omega fatty acids. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are necessary in dogs, cats and humans; the ratio they are delivered to the body matters as well. AAFCO recommends the omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio be less than 30:1. This means for every measurement of omega-3 fatty acids in the diet, the maximum omega-6 allowed is 30 measurements. Omega-6 fatty acids are most commonly sourced from meat, but are also found in high concentrations in corn, soy and other grains. Omega-3 fatty acids are most commonly sourced from fish and shellfish, but also flax seed oil and other seed plants. A manufacturer is permitted to produce a food with a lower ratio than 30:1, but for most commercial pet foods, the higher ratio will be most typical. In conventionally raised, grain fed beef, the omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio is close to 12:1. Grass fed beef has a much lower profile – 2.5:1 omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids. Corn and soy contain only omega-6 fatty acids; which may explain why most commercial pet foods have such a high ratio of omega-6 fatty acids to omega-3. If a pet food is based on corn and meat fed a corn-based diet, the food will be quite high in omega-6 fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids must be consumed for a body to function and to balance the omega-6 fatty acids. Fortunately, most meats provide some omega-3 fatty acids, even if the animal was raised on grain, enough to fulfill AAFCO recommendations. While the body needs both omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids for health, there are numerous studies that document the inflammatory effects of high levels of omega-6 fatty acids in the diet. Consumption of too many omega-6 fatty acids leads to inflammation, heart disease, cancer and autoimmune disease, at least in humans (the expectation is the case is the same for dogs and cat). Similarly, too few omega-3 fatty acids will also lead to inflammation. In human studies, a ratio of 10:1 or less omega-6 fatty acid to omega-3 is most healthful. Less than 5:1 is even better, linked to reduced signs of asthma, arthritis and chronic disease in humans. Initially, it seems shocking that AAFCO standards would allow such high concentrations of omega-6 fatty acids compared to omega-3 in pet food. However, by understanding the majority of conventional pet foods consist predominantly of corn and corn-fed meats, it is easier to understand the high ratio. Home-prepared, raw and select premium pet foods made with grass fed meats will have a much lower omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acid ratio. Even some premium, grain-free pet foods will have lower fatty acid ratios due absence of corn and soy from the label. However, careful research of each food is required to determine presence of other crop foods with high concentrations of omega-6 fatty acids. Such a high ratio of 6:3's in commercial pet food explains why so many pet owners find benefit from feeding fish oil to their pets – there are not enough omega-3 fatty acids in their pets' diets. For this reason, it benefits most pets have fish oil added in small quantities to their food. Some owners may find no change in their pets' appearance with fish oil – these animals may do better with flax seed oil or freshly ground flax seed added to the food. Typical portions of fish oil would be ½ to 1 teaspoon per cat per day; 2 teaspoons for a 30 pound dog per day. Fish oil should be refrigerated when opened so it does not become rancid; rancid oil loses its health benefits. Gelcaps are another great way to add oil supplements to pet food without having to worry about shelf life. AAFCO standards are written for 2 reasons: To make sure there are enough minimum nutrients for dogs and cats to live. To fit into the manufacturing paradigm of commercial pet food. The standard for pet food based on real food should be different – sadly, said standard is currently unrecognized. by Dr. Cathy Alinovi DVM  

Pet food and an Evolving Protein Market
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Pet food and an Evolving Protein Market

The trend for high protein pet food products seems to be here to stay. It's standard practice in today's market for all brands to offer at least one high protein option in their product portfolio. Further, for many years now, pet food manufacturers have explored the utilization of novel and niche proteins in addition to traditional animal proteins (i.e. beef, poultry, fish, etc.). One could argue that the incorporation of niche proteins in pet food formulations should no longer be deemed a trend — rather, a necessary long-term option in a product portfolio. While the protein types that we see infiltrate the pet food industry vary from year to year, niche proteins are not leaving the pet food market in the near or distant future. In fact, pet owners are becoming more discriminant in their selection of proteins in their pet's diets. Pet food formulations that incorporate lower-quality animal proteins are generally viewed as inferior. As a result, pet food manufacturers are forced to look towards high-quality proteins which have previously not been considered in the ingredient stream for their industry. As the pet food industry continues to utilize more — and higher quality — protein, the demand results in competition with proteins intended for human consumption. Currently the demand of the pet food industry is not currently at a level which could impact the supply of proteins for human consumption. However, as meat consumption and pet ownership increase globally (in response to an improved global economy), the demand for high-quality proteins in pet food manufacturing may not be sustainable. History tells us that trends in human foods eventually make their way into the pet food industry. Mars Pet Nutrition recently noted that previously, human trends took five to seven years to reach the pet food industry. Now, human food trends transition into the pet food industry within a modest two years. In the past few years, there has been a noticeable 'humanization' of pet food products and largely, pet owners want their pets to consume a diet that is similar to their own. Recently, perhaps the most pervasive human food trend to impact the pet food industry is a focus on the social/value-based traits regarding pet food ingredients — namely proteins. Now, not only do pet owners prefer a pet food with protein as the primary ingredient, they have an increasing interest in how the protein was procured and processed. The demand for and production of pet food products which meat value-based criteria (i.e. organic, all-natural, local, etc.) is rising exponentially. Similarly, as observed in the human food sector for several years, modern pet owners tend to prefer a diet which excludes ingredients they believe to be harmful or offer no nutritional value (i.e. GMOs, hormones, artificial preservatives, etc.). Scientifically, no data exists to demonstrate the health benefits of such rations. Nonetheless, the perceived health benefits will continue to drive an increase in these protein options. The adoption of non-animal-based proteins quickly, and successfully, transitioned from the human food to pet food market. However, perhaps the most interesting, if not controversial, human protein trend is the rapidly rising interest in animal-proteins derived from cell-culture, or 'fake meat.' The regulatory landscape around these products in the human food sector is still being determined. Furthermore, the commercial-scale production of such products may be several years in the future. However, as noted, trends which influence the human food sector eventually transition into the pet food industry. Some companies, including Boulder, Colorado-based Bond Pet Foods, are forecasting that the pet food industry may be the perfect landscape for such a novel protein. Therefore, in the near future, it is likely that pet food manufacturers will also have the conversation of where — if at all — these products fit into the pet food portfolio. The conversations regarding proteins and their uses in the pet food industry have evolved tremendously over the past several decades. If we look to trends seen in the human food sector, it is evident that these conversations will continue to challenge pet food manufacturers to explore new options without sacrificing the quality, nutrition, or value of their products.  by Jennifer Martin, Ph.D., currently an Assistant Professor in Meat Quality and Safety in the Department of Animal Sciences at Colorado State University Pet Food Processing

8 Benefits of Formulating with NZ Green Lipped Mussel Powder
Animal Origin
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3+ MIN

8 Benefits of Formulating with NZ Green Lipped Mussel Powder

With minimum 50% protein, Green Lipped Mussel powder includes the essential 9 amino acids required through the diet and not made by the body The NZ Green Lipped Mussel is a powerhouse of nutrition for human and animal wellbeing.The New Zealand Green Lipped Mussel (Perna canaliculus) is a type of Bivalve mollusc. It has a rich history with the indigenous New Zealand Maori who have used the mollusc as a flavorsome and highly nutritional component of their diet for centuries.  Today, the mussels are farmed in the pristine waters of the Marlborough Sounds, Golden and Tasman Bays and the Coromandel. Between 140,000 and 160,000 tons of Green Lipped Mussels are harvested annually and are the largest New Zealand aquaculture export finding their way on to dining plates in over 70 countries.   But the story goes beyond human consumption into the lives of our most treasured companions, our pets. Green Lipped Mussels are regarded as a perfect seafood choice for animal nutrition. Green Lipped Mussels contain vital protein, minerals, vitamins and include mucopolysaccharides, betaine, and omega fatty acids.   Since the 1990s pet food companies have been blending NZ Green Lipped Mussel powder into their premium feed formulas for optimal animal health. It's for this reason that Green Blue Nutrition aims to educate and encourage pet feed companies to formulate their products with NZ Green Lipped Mussel powder. This sustainable marine superfood ingredient provides many benefits that make it a  highly valuable food for pets: 1. Nature's Nutrition
Growing in the ocean, mussels absorb the vital minerals in their environment and are an Important source of manganese, potassium, magnesium, calcium, Iron, and zinc. The powder has the added advantage of naturally occurring vitamins including A, E, B and Niacin. 2. Energy & Healthy Growth 
With minimum 50% protein, Green Lipped Mussel powder includes the essential 9 amino acids required through the diet and not made by the body.  3. Enhanced Appetite 
A high 2% betaine is found in Green Lipped Mussel powder. Betaine is a feed attractant for fish and prawns, and appetite stimulant for cats and dogs improving their nutrient intake. Increased muscle gain through improved protein synthesis resulting in healthy growth and weight of animals.  4. Mobility & Joint Function
A natural source of the mucopolysaccharides, heparin sulphate and chondroitin sulphate – important nutrients for maintaining the physiology needed for animal mobility.  5. Optimal Cellular Function
Mussels filter and consume microalgae and planktons containing many different essential fatty acids necessary for cell function. 6. Clean Label 
Green Lipped Mussel powder is a pure marine nutrient source, nothing is added proving  transparency for labelling. It is unique to have one ingredient that provides so many nutritional benefits. 7. Human Grade Food
Humans have a long history of consuming mussels and can be found today in many delicious seafood dishes. Green Lipped Mussel powder is optimal for animal nutrition due to its marine flavor favored by cats and dogs. 8. Sustainable & Economical
With a growing public interest in ethical and economic sustainability, the NZ Green Lipped Mussels tick both boxes. 
 Mussels are farmed under a monitored sustainable aquaculture program. The Environmental Defence Fund (NZ) has labelled this superfood as an 'eco-best choice' (www.aplusaquaculture.nz/mussels)   Economically, research demonstrates that just a small quantity of mussel powder can result in extraordinary health benefits. If you are looking for a sustainable and healthy feed ingredient to complement the diet of pets, seafood aquaculture or farmed animals, look no further than NZ Green lipped Mussel powder. We recommend using a 'heat free' stabilized, freeze dried powder to optimize quality of proteins minerals and vitamins.  by Green Source Organics Source: All Extruded
 

Canadian Company Turns Pests into Protein for First Dog Diet
Animal Origin
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2+ MIN

Canadian Company Turns Pests into Protein for First Dog Diet

A Canadian dog treat company with an eye for sustainable alternatives has graduated to dog food with the release of its newest product, an insect protein-based, hypoallergenic kibble diet, on August 6. Most of the diet's protein comes from the inclusion of black soldier fly powder and oil, which is supplied from Canadian insect-rearing facilities. Other ingredients in the formula include millet, peas, buckwheat, chickpeas, coconut, lentils, flaxseeds and sweet potatoes. The dog diet is supplemented with added vitamins and minerals, as well as other ingredients to help with digestive health, such as yeast extract and cellulose fiber. The kibble's nutritional value includes at least 25% protein and 15% fat, and no more than 6% fiber and 10% moisture. According to Wilder Harrier, using insect protein for pet foods and treats is a sustainable alternative to using traditional animal proteins because 'insects require 2,000 times less water than beef… to produce the same output of protein,' along with other reasons stated on the company's website. The dog food is produced in Montreal by a co-manufacturing partner that uses a small-batch, low-temperature extrusion method, and the facility in which it's produced is compliant with Canadian Federal Inspection Agency (CFIA) guidelines and undergoes third-party audits, according to Wilder Harrier. Wilder Harrier's Farmed Insects Recipe dog food also meets standards set by the American Association of Feed Control Officials' (AAFCO). Currently, the company ships direct-to-consumer through its website and is also sold in local Canadian pet retail stores across the country. Wilder Harrier products are not available in US pet retail locations. Wilder Harrier was founded in January 2015, initially holding the brand name BugBites. The name was changed in November 2016 after sowing some confusion among consumers about whether the treats soothed dogs' bug bites. The company sells a line of cricket-based dog treats as well as vegan seaweed biscuits, and a line of dental sticks. None of the company's products incorporate traditional sources of animal proteins. by Jordan Tyler
 

Fighting Pet Ageing  with Food - From Tailored Nutrition to Prevention
Formulation
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3+ MIN

Fighting Pet Ageing with Food - From Tailored Nutrition to Prevention

Pet parents want their dogs and cats to live a happy, healthy life, even as they enter old age. Early preventive nutrition using protective ingredients is an effective strategy to ensure healthy ageing of pets. Senior pets, a growing market  As with humans, life expectancy of pets has been continuously increasing over the past years, to reach an average of 11 years for dogs and 12 years for cats. The growing population of old pets represents huge potential. Pet parents want their animals to remain healthy as they age. Pet food and pet care players can seize the opportunity to offer products and services covering the evolving needs of ageing animals, thus ensuring pet owner loyalty to brands 'from kennel to grave'.*  Ageing and consequences  Seven years is often considered the average starting age of the geriatric years for cats and dogs. The ageing process induces numerous metabolic and physiological changes. It is accompanied by various problems such as joint health issues, obesity, immune system deterioration, cognitive decline and diabetes. For pet parents, it is hard to see their furry friend in pain. They are actively looking for solutions that will allow pets to stay healthy while growing old so they can share more time together. Fighting ageing: better safe than sorry The first strategy to deal with senior pet health issues includes the use of drugs or surgery. This curative approach is generally the last option once disease is established. The second strategy consists of taking various preventive actions to avoid or delay age-related troubles. Amongst them, food appears to be an ideal proactive way to ensure pets healthy ageing. Indeed, the belief that healthy eating habits can positively impact lifespan, acknowledged in human medicine, is transferring to the pet care field and fuelling the development of senior products. From tailored nutrition to protective ingredients Life-stage based pet food is increasingly demanded by consumers. In the US, one pet owner out of seven is looking for senior formulation.** Current diets for senior cats and dogs are designed to respond to specific nutritional requirements of aged pets. Protein level, calories, vitamins and mineral content are carefully controlled to help avoid obesity, support the immune system and limit pain in ageing joints. Most senior formulas are enriched with essential nutrients such as omega-3. Today, however, owners of old pets, increasingly informed about the benefits of prevention, expect life-stage products not only to be adapted to seniors, but also to limit the development of age-related disorders. Pet parents who trust the power of nature are particularly seeking natural ingredients or superfoods that already have proven preventive benefits in human health. Natural protective molecules from plants Many nutrients found in fruits or vegetables have properties that tackle the effects of ageing. Amongst the promising protective plant-based ingredients, those containing polyphenols are particularly interesting because they help to prevent cell oxidation and inflammation caused by ageing. At Vivae for instance, the latest anti-ageing solution for pets includes Curcuma which has remarkable antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Some berries also contain other polyphenols which, in addition to antioxidant properties, can have beneficial effects on cognition and memory.  The earlier the better Dietary prevention of ageing should start from birth. For maximum efficiency, the best approach is to introduce these protective ingredients as early as possible in a pet's life. Ideally, they are added to foods or via treats and supplements at the early stages of life, including junior and adult. These strategies can help lead to improvements in health, keeping pets young at heart for a longer time and bringing happiness to their human parents.  by GlobalPets

2 Plant-based Protein Ingredients enter Clean Label Pet Food Space
Vegetable Origin
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2+ MIN

2 Plant-based Protein Ingredients enter Clean Label Pet Food Space

Ingredion on April 24 added two plant-based ingredients to its pet food portfolio for the US and Canada, both of which are derived from peas. The high-functioning, grain-free and clean label ingredients cater to manufacturers looking to replace other starches and flours in new formulations. PURITY P 1304 pea starch and VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate are applicable in canned pet foods, gravies, dry kibble, treats, biscuits and other formats. They provide texture and structure, improve water and fat binding, and act as a thickening and gelling agent in pet food and treat formulations. PURITY P 1304 pea starch specifically helps bind ingredients, while VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate can increase extrusion and injection molding efficiency, according to Ingredion. VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate can be incorporated by manufacturers to create more complete protein profiles and offers flexibility in developing new products or reformulating existing products. 'Today's health and wellness trends are driving pet owners to seek clean and simple foods for themselves as well as their pets,' said Patrick Luchsinger, marketing and business development manager of pet food for Ingredion. 'Ingredion's PURITY P 1304 pea starch and VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate give pet food manufacturers two new options for creating grain-free, clean label products that will satisfy even the most discerning pet owners and pets.' Ingredion invested $140 million to grow its plant-based protein capabilities in December 2018. These two new pet food ingredients will be sold under a joint venture with Verdient Foods, Inc., a part of its overall investment that has supported Ingredion's capacity to develop pulse-based protein ingredients from peas and other legumes for human food applications. "We've identified plant-based proteins as a high-growth, high-value market opportunity that is on-trend with consumers' desire to find sustainable and good tasting alternatives to animal-based proteins," said Jim Zallie, president and CEO of Ingredion. "We're excited by what these investments represent for Ingredion. Being a sustainable and trusted source of plant-based proteins provides us with another major ingredient platform to complement our offerings in clean label, wholesome, texture and nutritional ingredient solutions." Consumer preferences have long been driving pet food trends. The push for clean label, sustainable pet food products have placed plant-based proteins front and center as pet owners become increasingly concerned about the overall health and wellness of pets and purchase products that match their human-food preferences. By Jordan Tyler  

Pet food Formulation and Production Course
Formulation
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2+ MIN

Pet food Formulation and Production Course

Pet food professionals converge for formulation and production course Professionals within the pet food industry joined Kansas State University's IGP Institute from January 14–18th, 2019 for the IGP–KSU Pet Food Formulation for Commercial Production Course. In attendance were 20 participants from the US, Canada, Pakistan, India and Guatemala. The participants gained hands-on experience and further education in developing pet food product formulations. 'Creating pet food formulas from concepts, reverse engineering existing pet foods, and troubleshooting pet food production and quality control compliance issues using formulation software were additional learning outcomes of the training,' says Greg Aldrich, Research Associate Professor in the Department of Grain Sciences and Industry. Topics covered by the course included understanding ingredients, processes and software necessary to create new products; revising existing formulas; performing business and production analysis; gaining an understanding of the raw ingredients used to produce pet foods, their general composition and processing considerations; fundamental principles of companion animal nutrition and dietary needs (specifically dog and cat); learning the processes involved with producing pet foods, the regulatory constraints regarding claims and requirements, and the transportation and storage factors involved with marketing effective foods for companion animals; and studying the range of formulation tools common to the trade. 'I had no prior background in animal food production,' says Caitlin Eilenfeldt, Food Scientist at Riverbend Foods. 'The course was well taught and in a friendly atmosphere. I was able to take away a lot from this course and Dr Aldrich made the material very easy to learn.' Throughout the course, individuals participated in the presentations and various demonstrations led by KSU and AIB International faculty and staff. Individuals of the course also gained hands-on experience in the OH Kruse Feed Mill. Dr Aldrich says, 'As the industry grows and improves, the Department of Grain Sciences and Industry at K-State is continually striving toward significant research developments and works hand-in- hand with the goals of the feed and food industry to promote and develop pet food processing.' by All Extruded

How Pet Food Premiumization Has Affected Nonaffluent Pet Owners
Formulation
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4+ MIN

How Pet Food Premiumization Has Affected Nonaffluent Pet Owners

For these households, "affordable" might be the name of the pet ownership game. Through some of the most successful initiatives in pet food history, pet food marketers and retailers have been offsetting low- to no-volume growth by converting pet owners to higher-priced fare, both cheering along and capitalizing on the pets-as-family craze. The trend dates back around 15 years, though the tipping point might have been the pet food recalls of 2007, which put a spotlight on pet health and accelerated the rush toward products perceived to be safer, especially higher-priced natural pet foods. Known as premiumization, the approach has worked like a charm in pet food and carried over mightily into other pet categories, lifting pet food dollar sales 23 percent from 2013 to 2018, to nearly $35 billion. True, some of these gains came from new pet households; from 2008 to 2018, the number of U.S. pet-owning households rose from 112 million to 123 million, or by about 1 percent annually.  But the dollar advances stem mainly from products with higher price points, especially natural, grain-free and specialized diets. Largely fueling the boom have been higher-income households. According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Consumer Expenditure Surveys, $70K-plus households rose from 46 percent of pet food spending in 2006 to 54 percent in 2016. Dollar-wise, it"s been a good run—great, even. But what happens once pet food shoppers have been "scaled up" to the max? That day may be nigh, the biggest harbinger being the shifting retail locus of superpremium pet foods. Long concentrated in the pet specialty channel, upscale pet food has officially gone mass, rocket-fueled by the August 2017 crossover of Blue, along with mass-market contenders like Rachael Ray Nutrish. It"s an expected progression and, for the time being, a good thing for mass marketers and retailers with a customer base eager for pet-specialty-style fare. Already, however, the benefits of mass premiumization, which began long before Blue made the jump, might be starting to wane. According to The Wall Street Journal (Nov. 12, 2018), since General Mills acquired Blue in February 2018, quarterly sales growth has slowed from double to single digits. And with Nutrish now (as of April 2018) under the wing of J.M. Smucker, Nestlé Purina and Mars also focusing heavily on mass premium products, private-label knock-offs covering all bases, and online sellers broadcasting competitive prices and free shipping, the downward pricing pressure is monumental. Factor in the rising costs of basic ingredients such as corn and fancy human-grade ones, and it"s unclear how much more trading up remains to be done. After so many years, it"s all but inevitable that pet food premiumization as we know it, i.e., still pretty much all kibble and wet foods, would start to peak. But looking back, the industry"s superpremium single-mindedness appears to have come at a cost. Although the number of pet households increased from 2008 to 2018, the bulk of the growth occurred among upper-income households, including those earning $150K-plus (up 60 percent), $100K-$149K (up 38 percent) and $75K-$99K (up 13 percent).  In contrast, growth among households earning at lower levels was minimal or negative, with $50K-$74K households up 3 percent, and $25K-$49K and under-$25K households down 5 percent and 8 percent, respectively. As Packaged Facts research director David Sprinkle revealed in Petfood Industry (July 2018), "Pet ownership patterns are at an economic crossroads … The good news is that, compared with 10 years ago, dog and cat ownership is up across the board among households with incomes of $75,000 or more … The bad news is that, in the past few years, dog and cat ownership is down among households with an income below $50K." In other words, a large segment of the potential pet-owning population seems to have been left behind. No wonder. In just the five years from 2013 to 2017, the average household expenditure on pet products (food and nonfood) and services (veterinary and nonmedical) rose from $1,063 to $1,280. Hindsight is not always 20/20, and scores of pet industry players are to be lauded for their generous involvement in pet adoption and welfare. But the fact remains: Over the past several years, millions of nonaffluent households have chosen to forego a pet. If premiumization continues to lose its zip, the pet market will be more dependent than ever on volume growth driven by growth in the pet population. Affluent pet owners won"t suddenly cease to count—to the contrary. But in a business bending so long and so far their way, pet food marketers and retailers looking for long-term growth would do well to redirect an equal part of their affection toward those households for which "affordable" might be the name of the pet ownership game. BY DAVID LUMMIS  - David Lummis is the lead pet-market analyst for Packaged Facts, a division of MarketResearch.com

Double Standards for by-products
Macro Ingredients
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3+ MIN

Double Standards for by-products

In this article, Henriette Bylling, discusses the double standards of by-products in pet food - how come by-products is acceptable as a pet snack, but not in whole pet food? When I published my article "Are by-products in pet food by definition bad" I received a comment about by-products being widely accepted as a snack despite the stigma of them being used in complete pet food and was suggested to address this in a future article… It is indeed a very relevant point so here goes… In the name of pet humanization, pet food with the meat cuts (muscle meat) that we humans prefer are promoted – you could argue that this makes sense as it might be easier and more appetizing for the consumer to relate to. But at the same time by-products such as bull pizzels, pig"s ears, fish skin etc. are widely used as snack even by the pet parent who have chosen to feed none meat by-product pet food… By-product snack appeal So, what is the reason for this by-product snack appeal – to be honest I personally find dry or wet pet food much less offensive both on the eye and on the nose. But when you see your pet eating the by-product snack with great enthusiasm it is difficult for me to understand why you would not wish to offer more of the same in their complete pet food?? The dog and cat"s liking of the pet food is after all one of key points the pet parent focus on when choosing a pet food. Some pet foods with i.e. tripe are now appearing in the market – who knows maybe they will help "legalize" by-products in pet food and maybe even make the pet parent appreciate that their pet"s meat preferences are not necessarily the same as their own… To raise awareness on both B2B and B2C level about your pet"s meat preferences not necessarily matching you own our website does, amongst others, include the below: Your dog"s meat preferences What exactly is "meat" when we write it in the declarations on our pet food? Besides pure muscle meat, which we humans mainly prefer, our pet food also contains liver, heart, etc. And there is a good reason for this. Intestines and organs simply contain more nutrients than muscle meat does. This is why in nature predators such as cats and dogs eat the contents of the abdominal cavity, including the liver, intestines and other organs first, followed by the rest of the carcass. They do this to ensure that they eat the best first. Please do feel free to share your thoughts on the reason for the double standard of the view on by-products and how you are raising the awareness of the benefits of by-products. By: Henriette Bylling, aka. The Queen of Petfood, CEO & owner Aller Petfood Group

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