PET Food Processing - September 2020 - 24

INGREDIENTS

Top: Dog treats produced
with crickets offer more
than 10 grams of protein
per bag and emit far less
greenhouse gas than
protein sourced from
chickens or cows,
Jiminy's reports.
Jiminy's

Bottom: The Billy+Margot
brand from Real Pet
Food Company includes
a diverse range of
ingredients including
wild protein sources and
different food formats for
variety, flavor and
optimal nutrition.
Real Pet Food Company

24

risk management tool. It must be kept
in mind, however, that many non-traditional proteins face unique regulatory
challenges, which can limit the degree to
which they may be explored."
Deena Krestel-Rickert, chief executive
officer, Four Paws Solutions, St. Louis,
added that many pet food companies
have initiatives to lower carbon footprints.
"Energy and water conservation are associated
with the production of some alternative proteins," she said.
Freely Pet LLC, Brentwood, Mo., a new pet food
company offering limited-ingredient products, focuses
on the needs, wants and eating habits of millennials
and their pets by offering flexitarian and vegetarian options. Freely Pet uses varied proteins, including animalderived, such as eggs, lamb, rabbit and turkey, as well as
whole grains, namely quinoa.
"Millennials understand that pet food isn't just to
nourish their pet," said Reed Howlett, owner of Freely
Pet. "They recognize what and how their pets eat is a
lifestyle and at times a reflection of their social values."
Sara Gilbert, DVM, veterinarian for Freely Pet, added, "These recipes thoughtfully take into account the
specific biological requirements of our canine companions rather than treating them simply as small humans.
This allows their parents the freedom to pursue a less
ecologically impactful style of feeding without having to
risk the imbalances veterinarians frequently see in exclusively homemade diets over time."
Kent Cooper, co-owner, Evolve Consulting Group,
Fremont, Neb., said, "Assuming the protein source is
defined by the Association of American Feed Control

PET FOOD PROCESSING | September 2020 | www.petfoodprocessing.net

Officials (AAFCO), product developers are free to use
ingredients in the way they best work within their company's processing capabilities. Formulations that are nutritionally complete need to consider marketing claims
and packaging options."
For example, a company may want to have alligator
on the label, but the profile or availability limits its inclusion. An option is to formulate with just over 3% alligator to be able to utilize the "with" claim provided by
AAFCO, suggested Lisa Schole, co-owner of Evolve.

From land and water
Formulators are exploring the use of many varied animal proteins, including duck, venison, bison, and fish
other than salmon. The most common format is as a
dried ingredient ready to be extruded into kibble. Fresh
is also an option for wet foods.
"Duck, for example, is a nutritious and flavorful lean
meat," Krestel-Rickert said. "It's comparable in fat and calories to a skinless chicken or turkey breast and an excellent
source of selenium and zinc, nutrients critical for proper
cellular metabolism. Since duck is a red meat, it contains
higher amounts of iron than other poultry. Couple that
with its robust flavor and moist texture, and you have a perfect combination of nutrition and rich taste."
Alligator meat is emerging as a sustainable ingredient
for pet food. It is typically processed into a dry format,
making it a concentrated source of protein that is well
tolerated by cats and dogs.
"Farm-raised alligators are fed a diet specific to their
needs, which results in a higher-protein, lower-fat and
lower-calorie alternative protein," said Scott Sprinkle,
senior director, quality, food safety and regulatory,


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PET Food Processing - September 2020

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