Ever wondered what the ingredients on your pets' food really are? Here are some common terms found on petfood labels and an explanation of what they actually mean.
• Meat and animal derivatives – a generic term for animal proteins which avoids having to specify where the meat comes from – it can be any part of the animal. This enables the pet food company to use whatever meat is the cheapest when they make their food – and there’s no way you can tell what it is.
• Derivatives of vegetable origin – sounds unpleasant, is unpleasant! Another loose term used to disguise all manner of hidden ingredients such as vegetable residues and even charcoal!
• EC permitted additives – this term hides a list of over 4000 chemicals, many of which have been banned from human foods due to health concerns, including E110 (sunset yellow) and E102 (tartrazine).
• Low quality proteins – cheap protein sources such as soya are used instead of meat in many pet foods. They are hard to digest and much less suitable than real meat proteins.