Meat products for people sold in grocery stores must be clearly labeled to identify the animal source. So why do pet food mystery meat ingredients get treated differently? A recent Wild Earth pet food blog post called “The Meat in Pet Food” takes a closer look at spooky mystery meat mislabeling in the pet food industry.
Deciphering Pet Food Meat Mystery
We are spotlighting Wild Earth’s informative post today for two reasons. One, we are big fans of the company’s all new meat-free approach to pet food: cultured protein! Essentially, Wild Earth is meat-free food that lowers our pet’s carbon footprint on the planet, by providing protein through a non-meat source. Grown through a process called “cellular agriculture,” their first product, Wild Earth Dog Snacks, is based on a human-grade plant called koji.
Read more about Wild Earth in our blog post, “New Vegan Pet Food Bets Your Meat-Free Tripawd Can Thrive.”
And the main reason we want to call attention to “The Meat in Pet Food.” is because it presents a shockingly simple explanation of the lack of oversight into what pet food manufacturers can consider “meat” when blending up batches of kibble and wet food for pets:
Rendered meat (meat meal)
As an ingredient, rendered meat or meat meal, is a widely encompassing term. According to the AAFCO, meat meal is, “The rendered product from mammal tissues, exclusive of any added blood, hair, hoof, horn, hide trimmings, manure, stomach and rumen contents except in such amounts as may occur unavoidably in good processing practices.”
They go on to explain that this ingredient may be from any number of animals other than cattle, pigs, sheep, or goats, without further description on a pet food label. — READ MORE
We encourage you to check out the Wild Earth article, which also features suggestions for investigating the mystery meat that may be hiding in your pet’s food. Be warned, however, that the article has a couple of stomach-turning meat photos that you may find shocking.