News last update:6 Aug 2012

Health claims in pet food are unclear

An increasing amount of pet food products with certain health claims enter the market. However, these claims are often not backed up by scientific research, according to the Animal Sciences Group (ASG) from Wageningen University that investigated the health claim situation in commercial pet food.

ASG concluded that the European legislation does not clearly outline the definitions of diet pet food and medicinal pet food.

Supplements and ecological and homeopathic pet food is not listed at all. Researchers found out that many claims in cat and dog food are unclear, not univocal, not relevant and not scientifically founded.

Follow up research
ASG also noted that regulation in the pet food and livestock feed chain is far behind the legislation in the human food chain. ASG therefore recommends a better tuning of the definitions for diet pet food and medicinal pet food within the European Union and a follow up study in horse feed and livestock feed.

Related websites:
The full report: health claims in animal feed (in Dutch)

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