Increasing pet food nutrition value with hydrolyzed proteins

Chicken Protein Hydrolysate is a functional and promising ingredient for the pet industry, with high digestibility and palatability.

Image courtesy of brf Ingredients
Image courtesy of brf Ingredients

Pet Food nutrition insights from BRF Ingredients


The consumer market has been showing increasing interest in purchasing quality products that can guarantee the health and well-being of their pets.

Overall, making use of ingredients that have scientifically proven results is fundamental for the success of companies that manufacture feed and pet food.

Considered a functional ingredient, Chicken Protein Hydrolysate can add important benefits to the nutrition of pets. In addition to being highly palatable and to stimulate animal feeding, the enzymatic hydrolysis process improves animal health due to better absorption of nutrients with functional properties.

However, in order to ensure that all benefits are actually introduced actively into the feed, it’s necessary to consider some fundamental characteristics when choosing the supplier.

Learn more about the benefits of Chicken Protein Hydrolysate and how to choose the best raw material for pet food formula.


The importance of choosing effective ingredients

The pet market has grown significantly in recent years.

It is not only the interest in domestic animals that has grown. With greater access to information and the humanization of pets in people’s houses, the concern with health and animal welfare is also on the rise.

As a result, investment in the quality of life for pets has moved billions of dollars globally. According to the analysis of the pet market in the world, the processing of food for pets alone moved about 4.51 billion dollars in 2019.

Consumers are increasingly mature and aware of the products they buy, looking for proof and scientific evidence for what brands claim. The high demand for premium products reveals a trend towards prioritizing nutritional quality.

Through theoretical bases and practical tests, it is possible to know the behavior of each ingredient in the animal organism according to the species. Understanding this is crucial for making strategic choices of quality ingredients with the best value for money.


Proven results: Chicken Protein Hydrolysate (CPH)

Chicken Protein Hydrolysate is a high-performance functional ingredient for animal nutrition. Therefore, it is used in the formulation of feed and pet food in order to improve the health and well-being of dogs and cats.

CPH is produced through the process of enzymatic hydrolysis of proteins present in chicken guts, chicken giblets and chicken meat. As a result, smaller chains of amino acids and bioactive peptides are formed.

Bioactive peptides are essential to improve animal nutrition and pet health. When included in the diet, it adds to the parameters of health and metabolism, improving the absorption of nutrients by the digestive system and having potential for different bioactivities to animal body, such as antioxidant, hypoglycemic, immunomodulatory, and antihypertensive. These results are possible because peptides have different absorption pathways when compared to amino acids, and they may be absorbed in an integrate format.

In summary, in the process of enzymatic hydrolysis, proteins undergo a kind of previous digestion, which improves their properties regarding animal nutrition and digestibility.

Terrier eating from bowl


Chicken Protein Hydrolysate benefits for pet health

In order to be more efficient and preserve proteins, CPH is made via enzymatic catalysis, which provides several benefits for the formulation of pet food. Understand the main ones:

Hypoallergenic Pet Food

The enzymatic hydrolysis process results in the peptide bonds breakdown of proteins, causing the molecules to be reduced in size. The result of this reduction are peptides and amino acids that are much easier to be digested by the animal organism, and around 90% of Chicken Protein Hydrolysate consists of molecular mass below 2000 Da.

Optimizing the digestive process reduces the chances of pets having allergic reactions to food. Thus, when choosing Chicken Protein Hydrolysate, it is possible to develop an ideal formula for different types of animals, even for the most sensitive and with digestive complications ones.

Greater digestibility and palatability

Enzymatic hydrolysis enables the production of ingredients with a minimum digestibility of 90%, which is excellent for guaranteeing the nutritional potential of pet food. According to in vivo tests, which evaluated apparent digestibility in dogs, Chicken Protein Hydrolysate showed a 92% index for crude protein digestibility.

Another factor of great relevance in the quality of the feed is palatability. When it is low, it can affect the frequency of animal feeding, interfering with the pet's nutrition and health. An ingredient with naturally differentiated palatability and which has the support of 15% free amino acids and bioactive peptides is the Chicken Protein Hydrolysate.

In tests using the two-bowl method, the feed with a 30% addition of Chicken Protein Hydrolysate showed greater palatability compared to another feed without the presence of this ingredient, with 46% more first choices compared to the control feed.

Composition rich in amino acids and high protein content

The choice of a quality raw material can guarantee the ideal levels of amino acids and proteins in the formulation of the feed. In addition to the naturally balanced amino acid composition of the raw material, enzymatic hydrolysis ensures that they are more available to pets.

In the case of enzymatic hydrolysis of chicken protein, the ingredient may have about 15% free amino acids.

Considering that proteins are linked to the growth, vigor, resistance to diseases, and health of pets, the high content of proteins present in this ingredient is one of its main benefits and the Chicken Protein Hydrolysate has at least 75% of crude protein.


How to select the ideal hydrolyzed protein

Taking into consideration all the functional benefits mentioned above, it is worth mentioning that not all hydrolyzed proteins will guarantee this performance in feeds. Therefore, it is essential to check scientific references and ingredients tested in vivo.

Another relevant factor when choosing the best suppliers is to opt for those who have a clear process of traceability from the beginning to the end of the production chain because, according to research carried out by Mintel, consumers tend to have the will to know the origin of the feed ingredients. In this way, it is possible to make sure about the quality and safety of the product and to prioritize suppliers that work with fresh raw material, which maintains the high quality of the final product.

Finally, based on studies and test results, it is possible to highlight the effectiveness of Chicken Protein Hydrolysate as a functional ingredient with high nutritional performance, presenting a high digestibility and palatability index.

In addition, the ingredient is hypoallergenic and may have an influence on the bioactivity of the animal organism - in activities such as immunomodulatory, antioxidant, antihypertensive, and hypoglycemic. With an integrated production chain and high-quality standards, CPH has its raw material fresh and origin-controlled, preserving the quality and nutritional value of the ingredient.

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