Thursday 6 March 2008

Cat Food Ingredients

cat food

I never looked at cat food ingredients until recently. I never knew that some large pet food manufacturers were involved in animal testing until I began building the Picture of Cats website.

However, when we have a good look the ingredients look a bit strange. There is in fact a bit of skill required in reading cat food ingredients. Wet cat food contains a lot of "moisture" so the percentage of a particular ingredient should be calculated on a dry food basis. This means removing the moisture. In doing this we can compare dry with wet food and the percentage levels of ingredients between different manufacturers.

In the example taken here, Kitekat Tuna and Salmon, the moisture content is 82% leaving 18% real ingredients. We divide the ingredient by .18 to get a true figure.

Here are the cat food ingredients of KiteKat tinned (wet) cat food manufactured by Masterfoods.

The can contains meat and animal derivates, fish and fish derivates, minimum 4% tuna and minimum 4% Salmon, plus vegetable protein extracts and minerals.

The breakdown is:

- Protein 7%. Divided by .18 makes 39% (rounded figure)
- Oil 5% (I presume that this is fat) Divided by .18 makes 28% (rounded figure)
- Ash 2.5% (this is minerals) Divided by .18 makes 14% (rounded figure)
- Fiber 0.3% Divided by .18 makes 1.67%
- Moisture 82% (this is essentially water but it seems cannot be just plain water as the ingredients above do not add up to 100%. This water therefore contains unspecified material or the difference is due to the vegetable protein extracts and minerals referred to - am I wrong?)
Vitamin E 8mg/kg. This means 8 parts in one million or .0008%

The total dry basis ingredients amount to 82.67%. There is no mention of Taurine an amino acid essential to the health of cats which would it seems be an added supplement. There is also no mention of carbohydrates.

These figures do not it seems compare well with USA cat food ingredients. The USA is obviously the biggest cat food market by far. US cat food contains higher levels of protein at 40-66%, lower levels of fats at 4.5-28%. In the US they typically have 75% moisture levels. Looks like rip of Britain again.

I will be discussing other cat foods in other posts to make comparisons.

Photo copyright by frida27ponce

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