Go Beyond The Bag - Ask Questions!
by Food Fur Thought 01∙06∙2021
Like so many things in this world, what you thought was enough at one point, isn’t necessarily enough forever.
For years now we have taught concerned pet parents to read ingredients and how to better understand them to make sure they are getting what they want for their pet.
A great example of this (and how the needle keeps moving) is that ingredients are listed in order of weight on the package so if you want a lot of meat for your pet, meat should be listed at the top of the list.
To complicate that, if it is fresh meat, then the water is still in it when it is weighed so there isn’t a guarantee that the amount of meat is as high as it appears
So, it is then suggested that meat meals are better to see at the top as they have the water removed so the amount of actual meat is likely higher….
And then it is suggested that meat meal is a lesser form of meat because it is more processed….not necessarily true, but it is something to consider
I could list so many examples here, but I won’t. The point is that people wanting to do best need to keep asking questions. But one thing was learned is that ingredients matter
With the “ingredients matter” movement came a dent in sales of some of the lower quality foods and it started getting bigger.
The thing about business is if a company sees themselves losing their share of the market (especially in businesses who are there to make money vs provide a better product), they will look to see what is luring the consumer away.
There may have been some good things that came from this. Better ingredients possibly?
But dollars talk and marketers are smart and they can find a way to make things look the way consumers want them to so this complicates things.
I am not telling you which foods to buy and which not to buy. I will give tips in other posts to help you choose, but the reason for this post is to simply say…
Look past the bag…
- Who is making the food?
- Are they a company who is focused on pet nutrition or is it a division of a larger company?
- Are they owned by any investment companies or does the company have full control over their product?
- Where is it made? Do they have their own facility or is it outsourced? If the latter, are there mechanisms in place to ensure safety?
- Where do they source their ingredients? Is it on the commodity market where they are looking for best price or from farmers they have a relationship with?
- Are the ingredients human grade or feed grade? You can even go further depending on what you are looking for…are they free from GMO’s or hormones? Maybe even organic?
- How much of each ingredient is in the bag?
The point is to question. Question the pretty pictures on the bag. Question the words they use. Question the ingredients even if they appear to be what you have been taught.
Even if you questioned at one point and feel you have the answer, it’s a good idea to check the needle to see where it lies now.
If you ever needed a reason to visit your pet specialty retailer, the relationship that they have with their companies so you can find answers to these questions is key.
So, first question is, can you ask these questions where you shop?