PFI and its members understand and support efforts to address climate change and the collective unintended contributions to global warming. However, state and federal policy mandates and incentives promoting renewable fuel growth have created unintended consequences in the supply and demand for animal- and plant-based oils and fats.
Ingredients Used in Pet Food
Pet food makers use a range of animal and plant origin ingredients, including those that are not usually preferred or consumed by people in the U.S., and go to high-value use in carefully formulated pet food. Ingredients are selected based on a variety of factors, such as nutrient profile, taste, performance during the cooking process and cost. Pet food makers may use ingredients such as fats, oils and meals to ensure the pet receives both essential nutrition and a delicious meal. Significant scientific study and review goes into the selection of each ingredient and pet food makers take careful steps to ensure nutritional adequacy and safety when changing a recipe formulation.
The use of ingredients created from the production of human food also helps pet food makers support a more sustainable agricultural system by reducing food waste. In addition, the purchase of these ingredients adds value back into the agricultural economy. Pet food makers purchase $6.9 billion in crops, livestock and poultry products grown and raised by U.S. farmers and ranchers, generating additional economic activity up the supply chain.
Impact of Renewable Fuel Incentives on the Pet Food Supply Chain
U.S. pet food makers now face an increasingly challenging marketplace for sourcing certain ingredients, from flavorful fats to vegetable oils that support a pet’s healthy coat. States across the country are considering renewable fuel mandates and tax incentives, leading to an increased renewable fuel demand. The increased demand has caused prices for the animal- and plant-based oils and fats to double or even triple, and has drastically increased the cost of critical ingredients on which pet food makers rely to make dog and cat food. These incentives created an unfair government-driven market advantage to the energy sector and a disadvantage to companies purchasing ingredients for pet food.