Old tech is being deployed to create alt-protein food our pets will love

My Nguyen

My Nguyen

While innovative food manufacturers are looking for ways to help humans reduce their animal consumption, our beloved pets are being overlooked.

A 2017 study published in the scientific journal Plos One concluded that pets are responsible for up to 30 per cent of the carbon dioxide emissions linked to home meat consumption, and thus contributing to CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions resulting from animal production.

Most dogs and cats in US households – and indeed all over the world – consume considerable amounts of animal-based protein.

This prompted Bond Pet Foods to team up with one of the US’ largest pet food manufacturers, Hill’s Pet Nutrition, to look at ways to create a more sustainable pet food using fermentation – resulting in the first two metric tonnes of animal protein being produced.

Bond and Hill’s partnership, established in late 2021, aims to develop a greener source of animal protein for pets’ dietary needs and commercialise the fermentation technology that enables it.

The US Food and Drug Administration’s Centre for Veterinary Medicine will complete the ingredient’s final review, and based on the findings, prototypes will then be ready for market evaluation.

Bond claims its 50-year-old precision fermentation platform technology is secure and can produce everything from enzymes (rennet) for cheese manufacture to Vitamin B12.

The process has been redesigned to generate proteins like chicken, turkey, and beef for pet food applications more effectively and without the need to grow and process farm animals.

“Hill’s is known for its leadership in precise, complete, and balanced, science-based nutrition,” said Dave Baloga, executive VP of science and technology for Hill’s Pet Nutrition.

“We are excited to continue our relationship with Bond and support their truly novel approach to producing animal proteins in a more sustainable way that meets our high-quality standards.”

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