PET Food Processing - October 2020 - 32

ASSOCIATIONS

AMERICAN

FEED INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION
This organization supports animal food manufacturers through
fair trade policy, regulatory support, research and education.
"With sales of
over $30 billion
last year, it is
clear that the
US pet food
industry is
a hopeful
beacon of
light in our
suffering
economy
right now."
Louise Calderwood,
American Feed
Industry Association

T

The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) has
been at the forefront of trade policy and research to
support the US animal food manufacturing industry
for many years, and the last few have been as eventful
as ever.
In January 2020, the organization hosted its annual Pet Food Conference during the International
Production and Processing Expo (IPPE) in Atlanta,
Ga, where it awarded its inaugural Friend of Pet Food
Award to two notable pet industry professionals.
Shortly after, the pandemic hit, forcing most industry events to cancel or move online. AFIA took
the challenge in stride and hosted its first ever virtual
Feed Industry Institute, offering an in-depth, comprehensive training opportunity for new animal food
industry employees.
The organization collaborated with Pet Food
Institute to secure $5 million in funding to support and
streamline the Center for Veterinary Medicine's new
ingredient review process. As a result of the funding,
the division added 12 full-time employees to the ingredient review team, which will help to speed up the process and reduce the financial impact on manufacturers.
AFIA has kept a close eye on trade policies affecting US pet food manufacturers, including the United
States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), which
officially went into effect in July, and Phase One of a
trade deal with China, which lifted previously held

poultry- and ruminant-derived ingredient restrictions
and streamlined the facility registration requirements.
According to AFIA, US pet food exports to China increased by 128% from January to June 2020 compared
to the same period in 2019.
"With sales of over $30 billion last year, it is clear that
the US pet food industry is a hopeful beacon of light
in our suffering economy right now, putting money
back into the hands of farmers and ranchers and those
who supply them to keep our pets fed complete and
balanced meals," said Louise Calderwood, director of
regulatory affairs for AFIA.
Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit the United
States, AFIA has been engaging with other trade organizations, as well as state and federal governments, to
ensure pet industry businesses continued operating, to
keep pet professionals and industry employees safe, to
monitor supply chain and transportation issues, and to
keep the industry up-to-date on the US Food and Drug
Administration's updated inspection schedules.
AFIA also provided resources and sample materials
to help companies communicate their own COVID-19
response plans with employees and consumers.
Over the next year, Calderwood shared the association will continue to support a streamlined process for
ingredient approval, push for improved trade agreements, and support research on the economic impact
of the pet food industry.

Pet Food Production and Ingredient Analysis, March 2020
In 2019, the Institute for Feed Education and Research (IFEEDER) collaborated with the North American Renderers
Association (NARA) and the Pet Food Institute (PFI) to commission a study to examine the ingredients used in the production
of pet food and capture the economic value pet food manufacturers generate throughout the supply chain. The report found:
x Over 500 ingredients are used in the manufacture of pet food.
x 8.65 million tons of animal- and plant-based ingredients (at a value of $6.9 billion) are used in dog and cat food to provide
the complete nutrition animals need.
x Pet food manufacturers generate economic value throughout the supply chain through the purchase of ingredients from
farmers, who purchase materials, services, equipment and labor from other industry suppliers.

32

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PET Food Processing - October 2020

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