PET Food Processing - June 2018 - 48


Pet owners
recognize fruits
and vegetables
as 'good for you'

grown in the U.S. According to Dustin Dover, chief operating officer for Renew Biomass, Springfield, Missouri,
"Miscanthus is purposefully grown with long-term contracts for the pet food industry. Typical fiber sources
used today are either by-products or chemically produced. With M-Fiber you know that the product is the
same quality every time. M-Fiber is also fully traceable."
An ingredient recently being utilized in specialty
diets and treats is coconut glycerin. It is a new humanfood-grade ingredient that replaces vegetable glycerin.
Derived from coconut oil, it checks all the boxes: natural, non-GMO and made in the U.S. "Pet food manufacturers love having the ability to use coconut glycerin on
their labels," says Andrew Cameron, vice president, food
group at Hydrite Chemical Co., Brookfield, Wisconsin.
"A clean label humectant is a nice addition to treat formulations as well."
Pet owners are also embracing freeze-dried and dehydrated fruits and vegetables. "People want their pets to
eat as healthy as they do and with the clean label movement in both sectors, fruits and vegetables immediately
are recognized as 'good for you' ingredients," says Darrel
Hanson with Van Drunen Farms, Momence, Illinois. "In
addition, there is new science to document that freeze
drying is far superior to air drying and all other drying
methods in terms of nutrient retention."
When foods are properly dried or dehydrated mi-

Van Drunen Farms



croorganisms such as yeast, mold and bacteria cannot
grow and survive which prevents the food from spoiling explains Susan Mills-Gay, extension state specialist,
University of Missouri Extension, Columbia, Missouri.
Dehydration is effective for preserving food, but it
does affect the nutritive value of the food. Mills-Gay
says that while vitamins C and A can be destroyed by
air, some vitamins can be kept intact by using a sulfite
treatment. However, this sulfite treatment causes the
destruction of thiamin.
The process of dehydration needs to be well controlled to prevent microbial growth. She states that temperatures between 120°F and 140°F are recommended
for fruits and vegetables. At the beginning of the dehydration process, temperatures of 150°F may be used but
need to be lowered as the food begins to dry. During the
last hour of the drying process, the temperature should
not exceed 130°F.
Freeze drying keeps most pet food nutrients intact.
The process technically is known as lyophilization or
cryodesiccation and is a dehydration process which
freezes the food. The surrounding pressure is then
reduced, allowing the frozen water inside to sublime
- phase transition - from the solid to the gas phase.
The process offers a method of preserving the chemical
and structural integrity of the food with little alteration
to its structure by the avoidance of heat that occurs

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of PET Food Processing - June 2018