Purina says that it is a myth that the pet food ingredient Animal Digest is considered substandard. Here’s some facts about this pet food ingredient, then you decide if you agree with Purina.
The Purina Veterinary Diets website tells pet food consumers it is a “Nutrition Myth” that the pet food ingredient animal digest is a low-quality ingredient. Purina says “this is because the word ‘digest’ is mistakenly thought to describe the contents of the digestive tract.”
Purina continues stating “The Facts” with…
“The word “digest” in “animal digest” refers to the digestive process used in production, not the ingredients. The process starts with animal protein such as muscle and soft tissue supplied by USDA-inspected facilities.”
Excuse me, Myth: Notice the wording in the second sentence above. Key words are “such as”. The process of manufacturing the pet food ingredient animal digest starts with animal protein “such as” muscle meat supplied by USDA-inspected facilities…but (and this is key) it is not ‘limited to’ muscle meat supplied by USDA-inspected facilities. In other words, the ingredients that are cooked down to a slurry (digested) that become the pet food ingredient ‘animal digest’ can be sourced from horrendous sources. In fact, FDA testing determined that the pet food ingredient ‘animal digest’ to be a likely source of pentobarbital – the drug used to euthanize animals. Thus, the pet food ingredient ‘animal digest’ can start with animal protein “such as” euthanized animals – any euthanized animal.
Pardon me, Myth: And the Purina Veterinary website’s attempt to promote the quality of ‘animal digest’ neglected to mention that the source ingredients are not required to be USDA inspected and approved quality. USDA inspected “facilities” is one thing…USDA inspected and approved ‘meats/organ meats’ is another. Just because a meat/organ meat is “supplied by” a USDA inspected facility means little to nothing to the actual quality of the meat/organ meat. They could be rejected for use in human food animal proteins “such as” diseased animals or cancerous tissues or drug residue sites “supplied by” a USDA inspected facility.
Myth? The pet food ingredient animal digest COULD be a quality ingredient IF (and only if) the source ingredients used are USDA inspected and approved. But on the flip side, the pet food ingredient animal digest COULD be a horrible, waste-based ingredient that COULD include the remains of euthanized animals (and the lethal drug used to end their life).
Prove it. Seriously…to any pet food manufacturer that uses rendered ingredients that could be sourced from rejected for use in human food meat/organ meat/animal tissue (or euthanized, or drug laden, or downer, or road kill, or…this could go on forever) – provide pet food consumers with proof your ingredient is sourced from wholesome ingredients. Full disclosure – nothing less.
For a list of pet food companies that have provided their proof – provided their Pledge to Quality and Origin – click here.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
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