Pet food labels can be confusing and in many cases, extremely misleading when a customer doesn’t understand how they are formatted.
The F.E.D.I.A.F. code of good labelling practice for pet food (2011/C 358/07) was developed under EU co-regulation approach to ensure that products placed on the market within the EU are labelled according to the EU legislation in force.
What the title on the front of your pet food bag means –
For the purpose of this explanation, we will use ‘Turkey’ as the ‘species’* source and ‘Vegetables or rice’ as the secondary ingredient as these are ingredients that are commonly used for a title or description on the front of pet food bags.
If the title on the bag states –
This means that your bag of food DOES NOT require ANY TURKEY/MEAT CONTENT AT ALL – That’s 0% meat content!
**Example – Turkey flavoured complete and balanced food = 0% Turkey!
This means that your bag of food requires ONLY 4% of Turkey/meat content.
**Example – XYZ Complete food with Turkey = 4% minimum Turkey content.
‘Rich in’ Turkey OR ‘High in’ Turkey OR ‘With extra’ Turkey
This means that your bag of food requires a minimum of 14% Turkey/meat content.
**Example – A complete food rich in Turkey = 14% minimum Turkey content.
The word ‘Turkey’ alone or ‘Turkey dinner’
This means that your bag of food requires a minimum of 26% Turkey/meat content.
**Example – XYZ complete Turkey = 26% minimum Turkey content.
So with this information in mind, we take a look at our Turkey recipe –
Turkey and country vegetables = minimum 26% Turkey, however if you’ve already had a look at our labels you will see that not only is the minimum percentage of ‘species’ met, our food contains 28% FRESHLY PREPARED Turkey AND an additional 20% of dried Turkey. No turkey meal at all.
* Species definition –
All parts of authorised species with the exception of: claws; hair; horns; hide (with the exception of pork rind); feathers; teeth; beaks; hooves; intestinal content; added fat.
Species claims cannot be based on blood and bone alone.
It is advised that the species claim be at least 15% of material being tissue – smooth or fibrous muscle and organs.
Contributions – heart, aorta, kidney, lung, carcass meat, liver.
Not contributing – blood, bone, collagen or other connective tissue.