Diet & Nutrition: Pet Food Manufacturer Style

Will your dog’s diet affect their behaviour?  You bet!  Following is an article written by an exceptionally gifted associate, Danny Decourtelle (UK).  This is a good example why we should re-think what we feed our dogs, more over, why we should educate ourselves on the choices we make … 

Don’t Believe The Hype – A conversation with a pet food company asking what is in their food.

By Danny Decourtelle on January 2, 2012

Don’t believe the hype – a conversation with a pet food company asking what is in their food.

I buy and feed what is classed as a ‘premium’ dry dog food. Without mentioning the company name (and they are considered one of the ‘good ones’) the packaging and sound-bites they use include the following:

Chicken Dinner with Rice, Herbs & Vegetables

Complete Dog Food

Natural Goodness

No Artificial Preservatives, Flavours or Colours

Wheat Gluten and Soya Free Recipe

Holistic Approach to Optimum Nutrition

With Added Herbs (again)

If you believe your dog deserves nothing but the best, choose ******* adult chicken food.

I emailed the company and asked some very clear and straightforward questions:

1. How is your pet food processed or rather is it ‘extruded’ or ‘oven baked’?

2. What temperature and for how long does the above process take?

3. What does ‘chicken meat meal’ mean in plain English?

4. Where is the chicken meat meal sourced from, is it imported?

5. How is the ‘chicken meat meal’ in your product made and is it from rendering?

6. Is it fair to say the chicken is ‘cooked’ twice IE once to make the ‘chicken meat meal’ and then again when processed into dry nuggets?

7. Are there any organic ingredients in your product?

Reply from them

Dear Danny

Thank you for your e-mail. The answers to your questions are as follows:

1. Our food is extruded

2. It could reach temperatures of up to 160-180 degrees.

3. Chicken meat meal refers to chicken meat which has been cooked and ground down into a meal before it reaches us and is made from rendering.

4. The chicken meal is sourced in theUKand due to the volume that we use would probable come from a range of sources ie free range or battery or organic etc. We do however insist on only using human grade chicken.

I hope that this answers your questions. If you need any further information please do not hesitate to contact us.

From me

Hello again

Thanks so much for that last email, it was very helpful.

As I said I am trying to see how far back I can trace the meat ingredients of the food.

I understand that you buy in the ‘chicken meat meal’  as an ingredient to make your dog food.

Could you let me know which company you buy the chicken meat meal from so I can contact them to continue the trail?

Thanks so much for your help.

From them
Hi Danny

Thank you for your e-mail.

Unfortunately we are not allowed to provide the details of the company that we currently purchase our chicken meat meal from, although I can confirm that they are aUKbased supplier. I am sure that if you search on the internet you should be able to find companies who supply chicken meat meal to the pet food industry and can continue your trail from there.

I’m sorry I can’t be of further help.

Kind Regards
From me.

Hello again

I have searched the internet and found there are 100s of meat processing companies out there.

It is impossible for me to find out which one supply the ingredients used in your pet foods.

I have to conclude that my research has reached a dead-end with your company..

Just so you know and regarding my research into the pet food (that I actually buy from you and feed to my dog)

I have concluded the following:

I am ‘not allowed’ to know the supplier of the meat part of the recipe.

I cannot trace the meat element of the food any further than yourselves or indeed ascertain where the raw ingredients come from or whether those raw ingredients used by the (secret) processing company are imported or native, even though they are UK  based I don’t know (or rather I am not allowed to know ) whether the UK  based company imports its meat.

I cannot find out the percentages of free range, organic or battery farms hens used in the product.

I cannot find out what other ingredients make up the ‘meal’ or whether they contain any chemicals or any other meats/animals or even not as the case may be.

The 100% natural ingredients claim on the package (although perfectly legal) cannot be confirmed in real terms.

It may be the case that the rendering plant are fantastic and use only ‘the finest ingredients’ (as read on the packaging of your product), never import cheap meats or use diseased animals or add any artificial chemicals, flavourings or preservatives.

Your company may well be a beacon of high quality pet food – but I just don’t know either way.

That’s the end result of my research

Thanks again for your help

From them

Hi Danny

We have taken on board your comments regarding the information about the company we purchase our poultry meal from and I have asked one of our directors, who is also our canine nutritionist, to comment about this and either he or I will be in touch with you once he has had time to look into it.

Kind Regards

To date I have heard NOTHING from the company director and canine nutritionist from this company.

 

  

 

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