Pet Food Ingredients

Nourishing nutrition for pet skin and coat health

The latest ingredients and products to help cats and dogs have healthy, shiny coats and skin
Functional petfoods continue to gain popularity with pet parents because of a simple fact: Food and treats that promise improved health for their animals appeal to consumers. Skin and coat health seem to be particularly important to dog and cat owners. 
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Why you should read 'Feed Your Pet Right'

This book takes a decidedly different turn from the usual consumer-oriented petfood fodder
I met Drs. Marion Nestle and Malden C. Nesheim, the authors of Feed Your Pet Right (Free Press, 2010), at Petfood Forum 2010. Admittedly, prior to their presentation, I was quite skeptical about what I was going to hear, as both authors were self-proclaimed outsiders to the petfood arena.
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Pea fiber: a functional petfood ingredient

With a label-friendly name, pea fiber offers an effective, reasonable alternative fiber source for companion animal diets
Pea fiber can be found in an increasing number of petfoods, especially in the premium, holistic and alternative format products. This ingredient is relatively new to petfoods and may be a strategic addition to counteract a growing consumer discontent with beet pulp and an absolute resistance to any of the functional fibers derived from wheat (e.g., bran), corn (corn bran) or soy (soyhulls)—all commonly perceived as cheap fillers. While this impression about the functional utility of these standard fibers is a long way from the truth, it certainly underscores that consumer perception rules the day.
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The GRAS process for petfood ingredients

How to submit a notification to FDA to ensure you’re covering your GRAS
The implementation of a “generally recognized as safe” (GRAS) notification process for animal feed ingredients has been eagerly awaited for years. It is not surprising, then, that the announcement by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) of its intent to start accepting notifications this past summer was met with great enthusiasm by the petfood industry.
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Why is rye rarely used in petfood?

There are no substantial technical, nutritional or performance issues associated with rye that would limit its use for pets
Rye is a fairly common ingredient in human foods and beverages. The most prevalent occurrence is in crackers and breads. Be it a light American rye, a dark German rye, heavy whole-grain pumpernickel rye or a slightly bitter rye with caraway, rye gets its share of notoriety in baked goods.
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Calcium carbonate: safe, effective, economical for pet diets

This is the ingredient most often used for vital calcium fortification.
Calcium is a vital nutrient for growth and sustained pet health. It is a principal structural component of bone and teeth, facilitates blood clotting binding-proteins, serves as a key conductor of nerve signals, initiates muscle contractions, activates select physiological enzymes and buffers pH changes.
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Is L-carnitine beneficial in ‘diet’ petfoods?

Home feeding studies would help determine if this ingredient is a practical tool for combating pet obesity
L-carnitine is a supplemental amino acid (ingredient) commonly found in low-fat, “light” or so-called diet foods for both dogs and cats. For the most part, the body produces an adequate amount of carnitine (L-isomer metabolite) to fulfill its role in the conversion of fatty acids into usable energy.
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Rosemary extract acts as natural antioxidant

This common ingredient is most effective in dry petfoods that use high levels of polyunsaturated fats and marine oils.
  Rosemary extract is a common ingredient found on dry petfood labels, typically at or near the bottom of the ingredient listing. While rosemary extract is generally viewed with favor by pet owners, it doesn’t provide nutritional fortification, it doesn’t provide medicinal support for any specific ailment, nor does it enhance the taste appeal of the food (for pets).
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Bringing sustainable ingredients to petfood

Companies like The Honest Kitchen, Pulse Canada and Mars Petcare are making "green" ingredients a top priority
For the environmentally conscious consumers who have done it all, from greening their homes to decarbonizing their travel, there’s a new frontier: greening their pets. In June, Petfood Industry conducted a survey of our petfood professional readers and asked them about their thoughts on sustainability and the pet market.
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Citric acid suffers from misperceptions and misplaced blame

Internet claims have led some pet owners to doubt the safety and utility of this natural functional ingredient
In petfood, citric acid is a common additive used mostly in the fat preservative (antioxidant) system. Food and nutrition experts consider this ingredient a natural functional compound, which, at its worst, is benign to pet health and wellness. However, increasingly pervasive internet claims have led some pet owners to doubt its safety and utility.
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