Articles by Greg Aldrich, PhD

News from the JAM companion animal program

Industry-academic partnerships highlighted during presentations
At the recent Joint Annual Meeting of the American Society of Animal Science and American Dairy Science Association and Canadian Society of Animal Science there were 27 topical reviews and original research presentations focused specifically on companion animals out of the hundreds of abstracts in the program.
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News from the AAVN Clinical Nutrition and Research Symposium

Research continues to play a key role in advancing pet nutrition
The 14th Annual American Academy of Veterinary Nutrition and Research Symposium was held in Nashville, Tennessee on June 4, 2014 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort. The symposium coincided with the American College of Veterinary and Internal Medicine Forum. This year the symposium attracted 155 professionals from around the globe. The attendees were treated to more than 30 presentations of original research, reviews and poster presentations on topics ranging from clinical care and diagnostic techniques to general animal nutrition and food product evaluations.
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Propylene glycol: When, where and how should it be used

Used as a shelf life extender and stabilizer, does this ingredient deserve to be the subject of controversy?
Consumers and the media say they want petfoods that are fresh, natural, inexpensive, perfectly formed and appealing to the eye, taste great, and are constantly available to the market regardless of season or supply. The retailers and distributors want petfoods that will last on the shelf for years, appeal to consumers, are encased in beautiful packaging and don’t degrade or get buggy.
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Venison, rabbit and buffalo: A throwback to our pets’ primitive past

Products provide expanded choice for consumers, but producers must study ingredients to justify costs
For the past decade there has been an increasing number of "novel protein ingredient" foods marketed in the petfood industry. Originally these were merchandised in the veterinary trade for elimination diets intended as nutritional support for animals with recalcitrant food hypersensitivities.
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Copper sulfate: A standard of reference for copper in petfood

If handled properly, this form of the trace mineral can be a vital petfood ingredient
Copper sulfate is a very common and effective copper source used in petfoods. There have been some recurrent concerns expressed to customer service hotlines and on some enthusiast web sites that copper sulfate is "toxic" and that it "attacks the heart, liver and kidneys" and that it is "moderately poisonous."
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Coconut oil: Does it belong in commercial petfoods?

Recent popularity in human food arena warrants second look for petfood
Coconut oil has become fashionable with a near cult-like following in the human dietary health and supplements aisle. Although it was once cast aside as an ingredient that contributed to cardiovascular health issues, now it is being touted as a cure for everything from obesity to acne.
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Grapes and raisins: Are they really toxic?

Current available data not enough to go by, more studies needed
Grape products get a great deal of press these days in the human food and supplement market. They are touted as beneficial for a wide array of functions from simple fruit and fiber to antioxidants that have health benefits and near-medicinal value.
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Fillers: Are they incorrectly vilified?

Ingredients seen as inferior may actually be valuable tools
Whether product promotion or informational website, the term "filler" is a popular topic of scorn. Many petfood packages make bold statements that their recipe "contains no fillers," has "no added fillers," or never uses "cheap fillers."
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