One Example of a Pet Food Partial Truth
With the pet food name removed to protect the innocent from lawsuit, the following is a direct quote from a manufacturer. From the mouth of pet food, a partial truth.
A concerned pet owner emailed her pet food company asking about the fish meal ingredient; does the fish meal contain ethoxyquin? This was the reply she received…
“As a pet food manufacturer XXX maintains an uncompromising position of integrity, honesty and transparency when it comes to the quality of our products and our message to customers and pet parents.
Unfortunately in today’s pet industry, there are so many myths and misconceptions related to pet nutrition, ingredients and manufacturing practices that we find it important to help you better understand the subject. At XXX we are always about transparency and openness, offering factual information about our products.
There has long been speculation and often misinformation relative to preservatives in pet foods. Much of this comes from internet blogs and chat rooms. The information is generally opinion without factual support. At XXX we strive to procure only the highest quality ingredients that are 100% natural and free from chemical preservatives.
All XXX products when produced are always naturally preserved utilizing Naturox as an anti-oxidant. Naturox, a registered trademark, is an all-natural free flowing anti-oxidant for use in the preservation of oils, fats, fat-soluble vitamins, flavors, aromas, carotenoids and other oxygen-sensitive material. Ethoxyquin is never used as an anti-oxidant during our manufacturing process, and we continually test other brands of pet food to make sure we are below tested levels or within standards of our category.
All XXX products meet or exceed AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) nutrient profiles and are manufactured in USDA approved facilities with consistently superior Good Manufacturing and Food Safety Audits scores of 95% or above.
XXX is committed to providing the highest standard of excellence for nutritional benefit, palatability, product safety, and customer satisfaction. We understand the level of trust that our customers have come to expect from us and from our products. It is our responsibility and commitment to continue to deliver on that trust!”
Did you catch the partial truth?
After three paragraphs of self proclaiming wonderment (similar to the response you receive from your Representatives in Congress), this pet food company says ” All XXX products when produced are always naturally preserved utilizing Naturox…” The partial truth comes from the words “when produced”.
Pet food regulations do not require a pet food company to list ingredients on labels that they – the manufacturer – did not add. So…a fish meal could be (often is) preserved with ethoxyquin by the fish meal supplier and the pet owner could be none the wiser by looking at the ingredient panel on the pet food. The pet food manufacturer didn’t add the preservative (the ingredient supplier did) so the pet food manufacturer loses all sense of responsibility. ‘We didn’t add it…all is well.’
This pet food company goes on to say ” Ethoxyquin is never used as an anti-oxidant during our manufacturing process,…” Partial truth…”during our manufacturing process”.
The truth is that this particular pet food company recently changed to a fish meal supplier using Naturox instead of ethoxyquin; prior to this recent change, they did indeed use a non-natural, risky chemical preservative in their pet foods; ethoxyquin by way of the ingredient fish meal. Their email goes on and on about honesty and transparency, blames blogs and chat rooms for misinformation, when actually they themselves are the biggest provider of misinformation.
The truth is that all XXX products have not always been preserved using natural methods as their partial truth response claims. It doesn’t matter if ‘when produced’ or ‘during manufacturing’ the company did not add a risky chemical. What matters is that the pets consuming this food were still consuming a risky chemical.
It should NOT be the responsibility of the pet owner to do detective work in order to learn about ingredients in a pet food. But it is.
Keep asking pet food the tough questions.
My thanks go out to this wise pet owner for asking the ‘e’ question and for forwarding me the lame response this pet food sent her. We are all learning from their responses or lack of response.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
What’s in Your Pet’s Food?
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