A new campaign has been launched to combat industry-wide issues identified by Supreme Petfoods regarding the production, packaging and marketing of small animal pet food. The campaign is the result of problems discovered with on pack declarations and in pack contents in samples from a range of different pet food manufacturers. A series of independent laboratory tests on a cross section of rabbit diets highlighted the following issues:
• Current regulations lack clarity with regard to potential meat DNA trace contaminants
a) potentially crossing into the human food chain via animal feed for rabbits
b) in relation to transparency and freedom of choice for consumers regarding vegetarian options for herbivore animals
• There is no industry wide agreement regarding nutritional claims for small pets especially in the vital dietary areas of sugar and fibre content.
• There is currently no robust policing of marketing claims
Supreme Petfoods operates a vegetarian facility for the production of its food for herbivores.
As a result of these independent tests, undertaken by two respected laboratories, Supreme Petfoods has developed and launched recommendations for an accredited quality standard, specifically aimed at foods for Small Mammals. It has suggested these should cover all the areas where concerns were identified in the tests and introduce strict conditions relating to:
• Nutritional content: agreed definitions and species specific statutory declarations
• Marketing claims: covering claims regarding complete/ complementary, beneficial fibre etc
• Production processes: quality process controls
Supreme Petfoods has invited all interested parties to contribute to the debate regarding ‘The Case for Quality’. Chris Childs, Managing Director of Supreme Petfoods said. “We believe that everyone involved in the small animal sector – from pet owner to retailer, manufacturer and welfare organisations – would want to achieve traceability, consistency in nutritional quality and security against cross contamination in pet food.”
The goal must be to deliver clarity and accuracy to the consumer in order to maintain their trust and confidence and deliver improved welfare for small pets. Our test results show that a full debate is called for, involving all interested parties. The aim must be to ensure the best interests of the consumer and their small pets are identified and enshrined within a standard which can be certified by an accredited source.”
Supreme Petfoods Tel: 01473 823296