Protein from potatoes?
Potato protein has features that make it a viable candidate for petfood applications
The terms potato and protein don't often come up in the same sentence--probably because we think of potatoes solely as a starch source. But in our ever-expanding search for useful ingredients in the petfood industry, potato protein, a concentrated extract from the potato tuber, has turned up in several specialty petfoods in the last couple of years.
Like other concentrated vegetable proteins-for example, soy protein concentrate, wheat gluten or rice protein concentrate-potato protein is low in ash, retains some modest amount of food functionality and has a high content of protein and corresponding essential amino acids. In addition, like the others, it can:
- Complement animal-based proteins in the diet;
- Help control the influence of ash on urine pH in feline diets; or
- Qualify for use in novel protein or hypoallergenic diets.
However, unlike the other, more common vegetable proteins potato protein is a bit unique in the annals of ingredients for petfoods because it isn't saddled with commodity or livestock feed perceptions, nor does it carry the tarnish of a recall. Yet it is not without liabilities, probably the largest of which is its relative newcomer status as a petfood ingredient, meaning we don't know much about its value or drawbacks. So, maybe it's time to do some digging to find…