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 Post Posted: Mon Apr 01, 2013 11:34 am 
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from http://truthaboutpetfood2.com/learn-the ... ngredients

Learn the Truth about Pet Food Ingredients
Posted by Susan Thixton on April 1, 2013 at 9:23 am

This will be an on-going project, defining pet food ingredients in consumer language. What the ‘official’ definition really means and what questions to ask of manufacturers to make certain you are getting the pet food quality you are paying for.

The perfect beginning to this ingredient definition project is the common pet food ingredient chicken. The consumer sees ‘chicken’ on the pet food label, some pet foods even claim ‘Made with Real Chicken’. What do you think of when you see ‘chicken’ on the pet food ingredient list?

Well, thanks to pet food ingredient definitions…

‘Chicken’ on the label could be ONLY chicken skin and/or chicken bones. In pet food, ‘chicken’ could include miniscule amounts of muscle meat and 99 % skin and bone.

So, beginning with Chicken – this starts the TruthaboutPetFood.com project ingredient definitions in consumer language. All ingredients will be compiled in one location on the website (yet to be determined), but will be posted in sections (many sections…there are many ingredients!).

Chicken. AAFCO definition of chicken falls under Poultry; duck and turkey would have the same definitions. The AAFCO definition states poultry is a combination of flesh and skin and could include bone. The definition does not include feathers, heads, feet or entrails of the animals. The poultry/chicken in pet food does not have to be USDA inspected and approved; specifically stated in the definition as “suitable for use in animal food”. This ingredient could consist of almost 100% chicken/poultry meat or it could consist of less than 1% meat, 99% skin and bone or it could be somewhere in-between. The definition allows for any variation in pet food while still being labeled as chicken.

Chicken can be a quality ingredient if it is sourced from a USDA inspected and approved bird and if it includes meat (not just skin and bones).

Questions to ask the pet food manufacturer about their chicken ingredients…
1. Is the chicken used in the pet food USDA inspected and approved? (Make certain they respond to ‘approved’ – many manufacturers will state something like ‘Our chicken comes from USDA inspected facilities’. This does not answer your question. Rejected for use in human food chicken ‘comes from USDA inspected facilities’.)
2. What cuts of chicken are used in the pet food?

Chicken Meal. AAFCO definition of chicken meal falls under Poultry meal; duck meal and turkey meal would have the same definitions. Simply put, chicken meal is chicken with moisture removed. Chicken meal is a rendered (cooked) ingredient that can include muscle meat, skin and bone. It does not include chicken/poultry heads, feathers, feet or entrails. The poultry/chicken used to make the chicken meal ingredient is not required to be USDA inspected and approved; specifically stated in the definition as “suitable for use in animal food”. This ingredient could consist of almost 100% chicken/poultry meat cooked (to remove moisture – prior to cooking of pet food itself), it could consist of mostly chicken/poultry skin and bones cooked, or it could consist of a mix somewhere in-between. There is some science that links high levels of bone in meat meal ingredients to bone cancer. Click Here to learn more.

Chicken can be a quality ingredient if it is sourced from a USDA inspected and approved bird and if it includes meat (not just skin and bones).

Questions to ask the pet food manufacturer about their chicken meal ingredient…
1. Is the chicken used in the chicken meal ingredient USDA inspected and approved? (Make certain they respond to ‘approved’ – many manufacturers will state something like ‘Our chicken comes from USDA inspected facilities’. This does not answer your question. Rejected for use in human food chicken ‘comes from USDA inspected facilities’.)
2. Does the meal include bone?

Chicken by-products. AAFCO definition of chicken by-products falls under poultry by-products; all other types of poultry by-products would have the same definition. Chicken by-products are parts of the chicken/poultry that are not utilized in the pet food ingredient chicken/poultry or chicken by-product meal/poultry by-product meal – such has the heads, feet, and viscera (internal organs) of the birds. Unlike the official definition of chicken or chicken meal, this ingredient definition does not have any requirement to quality; this is of no significance because all pet food ingredients are allowed to be USDA inspected and approved or USDA rejected waste. And regulations do not allow the manufacturer to inform the consumer (on the label) if ingredients are inspected and approved or rejected.

Some pet food manufacturers make the claim this is a quality ingredient because it includes nutrient dense internal organs. Internal organs such as kidney, liver, or heart from healthy birds do provide quality nutrition to a pet food. However this ingredient is a catch-all ingredient (combination of internal organs, heads, feet, ect.) without giving the consumer any guarantee to quality of those internal organs. As example, the liver filters toxins from the body. Liver from a sick bird or a bird that was fed numerous drugs prior to slaughter could result in a dangerous liver for the pet to consume. Internal organ ingredients need to be sourced from USDA inspected and approved animals.

Chicken by-products is not an ingredient I would feed in a pet food to my own pets.

Chicken by-product meal. AAFCO definition of chicken by-product meals falls under poultry by-product meal; all other types of poultry by-product meals would have the same definition. Simply put, chicken by-product meal is chicken by-products with moisture removed. Chicken by-product meal is a rendered (cooked) ingredient that can include any portion of the bird that is not included in the ingredient chicken/poultry – such as necks, feet, undeveloped eggs, and intestines. Unlike the official definition of chicken or chicken meal, this ingredient definition does not have any requirement to quality; this is of no significance because all pet food ingredients are allowed to be USDA inspected and approved or USDA rejected waste. And regulations do not allow the manufacturer to inform the consumer (on the label) if ingredients are inspected and approved or rejected. This ingredient could consist of almost 100% chicken/poultry internal organs cooked (to remove moisture – prior to cooking of pet food itself), it could consist of mostly chicken/poultry skin and bones cooked, or it could consist of a mix somewhere in-between. There is some science that links high levels of bone in meal ingredients to bone cancer. Click Here to learn more.

Chicken by-product meal is not an ingredient I would feed in a pet food to my own pets.

More ingredient definitions will be added soon.



Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,

Susan Thixton
TruthaboutPetFood.com
Association for Truth in Pet Food
Pet Food Safety Advocate
Author Buyer Beware, Co-Author Dinner PAWsible

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Betty

"You did then what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did
better."
Maya Angelou

"You have enemies? Good, that means you stood up for something in your life!"
Winston Churchill

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bjleek/


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 Post Posted: Fri Apr 12, 2013 10:28 pm 
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Interesting thanks for the information


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 Post Posted: Sat Apr 13, 2013 10:15 am 
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You are welcome! Glad to know that someone is getting something out of my posts!

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Betty

"You did then what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did
better."
Maya Angelou

"You have enemies? Good, that means you stood up for something in your life!"
Winston Churchill

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bjleek/


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 Post Posted: Sun May 05, 2013 4:29 pm 
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Part 2 http://truthaboutpetfood2.com/learn-the ... nts-part-2

Understanding the definitions of common pet food ingredients is significant to understanding what your pet is consuming. Part 2 in the on-going TruthaboutPetFood.com project ingredient definitions in consumer language.

To read more ingredient definitions, Click Here

Meat. AAFCO defines meat as “flesh” sourced from slaughtered mammals and is listed on pet food labels with the descriptive term such as Turkey, Lamb, Venison, Beef. ‘Meat’ is muscle and can include diaphragm, heart, and esophagus. AAFCO does not require this ingredient to be USDA inspected and approved; specifically stated in the definition as “suitable for use in animal food”.

Meat ingredients would be a quality ingredient if sourced from a USDA inspected and approved animal.

Questions to ask the pet food manufacturer about meat ingredients…
1. Is the meat ingredient used in the pet food USDA inspected and approved? (Make certain they respond to ‘approved’ – many manufacturers will state something like ‘Our venison comes from USDA inspected facilities’. This does not answer your question. Rejected for use in human food venison ‘comes from USDA inspected facilities’.)

Meat Meal. AAFCO defines meat meal significantly different than meat. Though the ingredient name implies it should be ‘meat’ moisture removed and the definition of ‘meat’ is muscle tissue – meat meal can include almost any part of mammal tissue excluding blood, hair, hide, manure, stomach and contents of. As well, ‘meat’ by definition is sourced from slaughtered mammals, meat meal does not have this specification. In other words, by its official definition, this ingredient can include animals that have died prior to slaughter (illegal per federal law for human and animal foods – such as euthanized animals and/or animals that have died in the field). This ingredient is listed on pet food labels with the species descriptor – such as beef meal, venison meal, and so on.

This ingredient could consist of a high level of bone. There is some science that links high levels of bone in meat meal ingredients to bone cancer. Click Here to learn more.

Meat meal ingredients would be a quality ingredient if sourced from a USDA inspected and approved animal.

Questions to ask the pet food manufacturer about their meat meal ingredient…
1. Is the meat used in the meal ingredient USDA inspected and approved? (Make certain they respond to ‘approved’ – many manufacturers will state something like ‘Our chicken comes from USDA inspected facilities’. This does not answer your question. Rejected for use in human food chicken ‘comes from USDA inspected facilities’.)
2. Does the meal include bone?

Meat by-products. AAFCO defines Meat by-products as non-rendered “parts other than meat” sourced from slaughtered mammals. Just about any ‘part other than meat’ of the animal can be included in this ingredient excluding hair, horns, teeth and hooves. This ingredient is listed on a pet food label with the species descriptor – if it is known (or if the by-products are sourced from one species); example being beef by-products. If the ingredient is listed on the label as the generic meat by-products then multiple species of animals by-products are included. AAFCO does not require this ingredient to be USDA inspected and approved; specifically stated in the definition as “suitable for use in animal food”.

It is questionable if this ingredient could be considered quality as per its definition it can include numerous (and unknown) parts of an animal that could or could not be USDA inspected and approved.

It is significant that…
1. This ingredient is not meat – per the official definition.
2. Certain by-products provide quality nutrition to pets – such as healthy internal organ meats. This ingredient provides no guarantee of exactly what ‘parts’ of a slaughtered animal is used – thus it is unknown to what nutrition is provided to the pet from this ingredient. It is unlikely the pet food manufacturer knows exactly what ‘parts’ are used in their pet food and it is unlikely there would be any consistency to this ingredient. The preference would be specific internal organ ingredients (sourced from healthy USDA inspected and approved animals) such as liver, kidney, tripe and so on.
3. If the by-products are not USDA inspected and approved, concerns exist. As example, the function of the liver is to filter toxins from the body. If liver from a drugged or diseased animal is included in this ingredient, it would be concerning as to what toxins the pet would be consuming in the food.

Questions to ask the pet food manufacturer about meat by-product ingredient…
1. Is the meat by-product ingredient used in the pet food USDA inspected and approved? (Make certain they respond to ‘approved’ – many manufacturers will state something like ‘Our by-products comes from USDA inspected facilities’. This does not answer your question. Rejected for use in human food by-products ‘comes from USDA inspected facilities’.)

Animal by-product meal. AAFCO defines animal by-product meal as rendered (cooked prior to manufacturing of pet food) product from animal tissues. This ingredient can include any part from any animal excluding hair, hoof, hide, manure, stomach and its contents. The official definition does not include the requirement of sourcing from slaughtered animals (can include animals that have died prior to slaughter – illegal per federal law for human and animal foods – such as euthanized animals and/or animals that have died in the field) and does not state “suitable for use in animal food”. The official definition does state this ingredient cannot be “a mixture of animal tissue products.” In other words although it is not clearly defined, animal by-product meal would be sourced from one specific species of animal – example: beef by-product meal, venison by-product meal, and so on.

This ingredient could consist of a high level of bone. There is some science that links high levels of bone in meal ingredients to bone cancer. Click Here to learn more.

It is questionable if this ingredient could be considered quality as per its definition it can include numerous (and unknown) parts of an animal that could or could not be USDA inspected and approved.

Meat and Bone Meal. The AAFCO definition of this ingredient is almost word for word to that of ‘Animal by-product meal’, with exception this ingredient definition requires it to be sourced from mammals. This ingredient can be a combination of several (parts) of species of animals. This ingredient can include any part from any mammal excluding hair, hoof, hide, manure, stomach and its contents. The official definition does not include the requirement of sourcing from slaughtered animals (can include animals that have died prior to slaughter – illegal per federal law for human and animal foods – such as euthanized animals and/or animals that have died in the field) and does not state “suitable for use in animal food”.

This ingredient could consist of a high level of bone. There is some science that links high levels of bone in meal ingredients to bone cancer. Click Here to learn more.

FDA testing found this ingredient to be likely to contain euthanized animals. Click Here to learn more. http://truthaboutpetfood2.com/pet-food- ... s-in-there

It is questionable if this ingredient could be considered quality as per its definition it can include numerous (and unknown) parts of an animal that could or could not be USDA inspected and approved.

More ingredient definitions soon.

_________________
Betty

"You did then what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did
better."
Maya Angelou

"You have enemies? Good, that means you stood up for something in your life!"
Winston Churchill

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bjleek/


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 Post Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 4:09 pm 
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Part 3- http://truthaboutpetfood2.com/learn-the ... nts-part-3

Here is the third installment of our on-going project pet food ingredient definitions in consumer language.

To read more ingredient definitions, Click Here for Part 1, Click Here for Part 2.

Fish Meal. The AAFCO official definition of fish meal states ground tissues of whole fish or fish parts (left over from filleting of fish); the definition does not state if bone is included however we can safely assume it is. If the meal consists of one variety of fish (such as herring meal), the pet food label must state this. If not, the label would state the generic ‘fish meal’ ingredient on the label. This ingredient may or may not include healthy oils from the fish.

One significant concern with fish meal is the preservative used (often referred to as ‘antioxidant’ in pet food). A common fish meal preservative is ethoxyquin – a chemical linked to serious illness. Some fish meal ingredient suppliers have chosen to use safer preservatives with the fish meal such a mixed tocopherols or Naturox.

Note: if an ingredient supplier adds a preservative to an ingredient, it is not required to be stated on the pet food label by the pet food manufacturer. As example fish meal. If the fish meal supplier adds the risky preservative ethoxyquin, a pet food manufacturer is not required to state this on the label. The consumer would have no warning a risky chemical was added to the pet food.

Fish meal would be a quality ingredient ONLY if a natural preservative is used. Fish meal would be a risk ingredient if ethoxyquin is used. Optimal fish meal would include the natural oils from the fish.

Question to ask the pet food manufacturer about fish meal ingredients…
1. What is the preservative used on the fish meal ingredient – the preservative added by your supplier of the ingredient?

Egg Product. AAFCO states egg product is a dehydrated, liquid or frozen egg; it does not include shell. Eggs sourced for the pet food ingredient ‘egg product’ can be from broken or damaged eggs not suitable for use in human foods. There is no qualification in this ingredient definition requiring the eggs to be USDA inspected and approved.

Egg Product would be a quality ingredient if sourced from human grade eggs.

Question to ask the pet food manufacturer about egg product ingredient…

1. Are the eggs used in the egg product ingredient approved for human food or are the eggs sourced from damaged, broken eggs?

Enterococcus Faecieum, Lactobacillus Casei, Lactobacillus Acidophilus, Saccharomyces Cerevesiae Fermentation Solubles, Dried Aspergillus Oryzae Fermentation Extract and similar. These very scientific sounding pet food ingredients are probiotics, known as friendly bacteria. Probiotics help keep your pet’s intestinal system working optimally which is key due to a major portion of the immune system located in the ‘gut’. Keeping your pet’s gut healthy helps build a strong immune system.

As with many pet food ingredients, probiotics can turn from a quality ingredient to a less than quality ingredient if the bacteria is not live and viable. Pet food consumers have two options to learn if the probiotics listed in the ingredients are a quality ingredient…

1. Look in the Guaranteed Analysis statement on the pet food label. If guarantee of “probiotics” or “micro-organisms” is listed, the consumer has the company word the live probiotics exists in the pet food.

2. Call the pet food manufacturer and ask “Do you guarantee the probiotics are live and viable?”

Menadione Sodium Bisulfate. Menadione Sodium Bisulfate is a synthetic Vitamin K and a root of a great deal of controversy. Vitamin K is a required nutrient for cats and dogs, however pet food regulations do not specify the source (food sourced K or synthetic K) of the nutrition. That is with the exception of fish based cat foods; regulations require Menadione Sodium Bisulfate (and only Menadione Sodium Bisulfate) to be the vitamin K source in fish based cat foods.

The controversy with Menadione Sodium Bisulfate is to its safety. Some insist the ingredient is proven safe citing evidence from years of use in pet foods. Others question the safety of the ingredient citing opposing science (to ingredient safety). The Material Safety Data Sheet for Menadione Sodium Bisulfate states information is “Not available” as to the toxicity risk to animals. The Material Safety Data Sheet does not specify “safe for animals” – it says toxicity risk to animals is not available. Thus the controversy.

For more information on Menadione Sodium Bisulfate, click here.

Selenium Yeast, Sodium Selenite. Two pet food ingredients providing the same required nutrient to pet food – selenium. Sodium selenite differs from selenium yeast in that should human error occur (addition of higher than accepted levels into the pet food), sodium selenite could kill pets. FDA has not approved the safer selenium yeast for use in cat foods. Months ago FDA informed us they are waiting for pet food manufacturers to apply for approval of selenium yeast in cat foods.

For more information on Sodium Selenite/Selenium Yeast Click Here.

_________________
Betty

"You did then what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did
better."
Maya Angelou

"You have enemies? Good, that means you stood up for something in your life!"
Winston Churchill

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bjleek/


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 Post Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 5:00 pm 
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I now spend more time reading in the pet store than I do in a bookstore or a library..... :))

Thanks for keeping us up to speed, Mrs. Betty!



btw......you should have a few guests arriving shortly.....

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 Post Posted: Mon Jun 10, 2013 7:56 pm 
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:)) That's why I feed raw- dont have to read all of this stuff!! :)) :))

And, you are welcome.

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Betty

"You did then what you knew how to do, and when you knew better, you did
better."
Maya Angelou

"You have enemies? Good, that means you stood up for something in your life!"
Winston Churchill

http://www.flickr.com/photos/bjleek/


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