Pet Food Regulations / Pet Food Labeling
on February 8, 2011

US petfood labeling update

AAFCO has proposed requiring calorie content to be included on labels, plus changes to labels of specialty petfoods

["Overall, the workshop did a great job in explaining petfood labeling as currently stipulated. ", "The amendment modified the type and quantity of data needed for manufacturers to calculate calories.", "A likely grace period to accommodate label changes may mean it would not be enforced for years."]

In the US, petfood labeling is stipulated by the Association of American Feed Control Officials Model Regulations for Pet Food and Specialty Pet Food. The models are constantly evolving, with often at least an amendment or two every year. So on January 17, AAFCO, in cooperation with the Pet Food Institute and the American Feed Industry Association, sponsored a day-long Pet Food Labeling Workshop in St. Pete Beach, Florida, USA.

Attended by state feed control officials and industry, the workshop went through the basics of all aspects of labeling, including product names, ingredient declarations, guarantees, nutritional adequacy statements and much more. It is my understanding that AAFCO intends to eventually put a copy of the workshop presentations on its website.

Overall, the workshop did a great job in explaining petfood labeling as currently stipulated. Progress was also made in proposals to modify two aspects of labeling at the AAFCO “mid-year” meeting held immediately after the workshop.

Specialty petfood guarantees.  AAFCO’s Model Legislation and Regulation Committee passed amendments that would change the way specialty petfood (e.g., for rodents, birds, reptiles, fish) and supplement labels declare guarantees for vitamins and minerals. Instead of following the regulations for livestock feed as currently required, guarantees would…

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