A recent article from Render Magazine (rendering industry publication) gives us some insights on what industry thinks about rendered pet food ingredients and perhaps some insight to the future plans of pet food industry groups.
The recent article titled “Rendered Products Remain Quality Feed Ingredients” published at RenderMagazine.com reports on the recent International Rendering Symposium. Greg Aldrich, pet food industry consultant (this article stated he is affiliated with Kansas State University), was quoted saying “Dogs and cats love rendered animal fats and proteins.” “Rendered protein meal represents a substantial portion of the high quality protein and fat in modern companion animal diets,” Aldrich said. “They are commonly included at five to 40 percent and can contribute in excess of 85 percent of the dietary protein and 30 percent of the dietary fat.”
The article continues: “National Renderers Association (NRA) President Tom Cook described the rendering industry as the essential gatekeeper for the health of people and the planet. In the United States and Canada, 250 facilities process 137 million pounds of raw material each day, enough to fill 10,000 Dallas Cowboy football stadiums annually. He broke down the amount of material from each animal not consumed for human food in the United States as 49 percent of the live weight of a cow, 44 percent of a hog, 37 percent of a chicken, and 36 percent of a turkey.”
Dr. Aldrich shared a clue of what should be in store for future AAFCO meetings: “As to the on-going battle of classifying some pet food ingredients as “by-products,” which, by definition, are secondary products produced in addition to the principal product, he noted that if the ingredient name cannot be changed, then the pet food industry will need to educate consumers that these ingredients are just fine to use in pet foods.”
“If the ingredient name cannot be changed…” – there is our clue. A hint from Dr. Aldrich that the pet food ingredient by-product might be up for a name change. Perhaps something that will further confuse (lie to) unknowing petsumers?
I’ve noticed recent industry reporting referring to by-products as “co-products”. No matter what the term is (by- or co-), the issue that is of most concern for pet food consumers is existing ingredient definitions, diseased tissues or tissue sourced from 4D animals (dead, diseased, dying and disabled) animals are lumped into the by-product category as well.
AAFCO has forever balked at defining human grade pet food ingredients; this attitude is antiquated thinking. Pet food consumers want and deserve to know the quality of the ingredients in their pet food/treat purchases. It is real simple…label pet food ingredients honestly. USDA inspected and approved meats and by-products or non-USDA inspected and approved. Then let the pet food consumer decide which they prefer for their pet.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
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