Senior Pet Nutritionist and Regulatory Affairs Specialist @Purina
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What are animal by-products or meat and animal derivatives used in pet food?
Animal by-products or “meat and animal derivatives” are ingredients which are surplus from the human food chain, these ingredients come from animals slaughtered under veterinary supervision. However, the human food industry tends not to use them for different reasons (e.g. look, appearance, type of material, low consumer demand…). These are not low quality ingredients at all. On the contrary, these ingredients have a high nutritional value providing high amounts of protein among other things that pets can enjoy, so there are many good reasons to use them.
Our products are made with meat and animal derivatives that are surplus from the human food chain. This might include different types of meat, as well as materials like the lungs, kidneys and livers but, of course, only comes from animals that have been passed fit for human consumption.
The by-products Purina uses are specifically selected for the nutrition they provide. In the wild, animals often instinctively eat these parts first, because they are rich in the nutrients needed. In some countries, some of these parts, such as offal, are also enjoyed by many people (e.g. liver or kidneys...) and even considered to be ‘high cuisine’.
Animal by-products are not only great for your pet; they are also enjoyed by them. They are easy for your cat or dog to digest and deliver plenty of nutrients, such as, essential amino acids, vitamins, minerals and healthy fats that will provide your pet with energy and help to maintain their health and wellbeing.
In fact, animal by-products can provide your pet with more nutrients than the type of meats popular with humans. For example, kidneys and livers can contain up to ten times more vitamin B2 (riboflavin) than lean meat.
So, in summary, feeding animal by-products is not only safe, but it is also great for your pet’s health, and contributes to reducing food waste.
Purina only uses good quality animal by-products and strictly follows European Pet Food Industry Federation (FEDIAF) guidelines, as well as European Union regulations.