For dogs with food allergies or sensitivities to proteins traditionally used in pet foods—usually animal-based sources such as lamb, beef or chicken—insects offer a truly novel protein source as part of a hypoallergenic pet food, said Tarique Arsiwalla, co-founder of Protix in the Netherlands. Arsiwalla presented on insect protein meal as a sustainable source of nutrients for innovative pet food applications during Petfood Forum Europe 2015 on June 10 in Cologne, Germany.
“A novel protein is a protein that the dog or cat has never eaten before,” Arsiwalla explained. “Actually, you must be exposed to a protein to develop an allergy to it.” Since most dogs and cats have not been exposed to insects in their diet, that qualifies as a novel protein source, he said.
Arsiwalla announced that his company is participating in the launch of the first commercial pet food product using insects as a protein ingredient: a therapeutic, hypoallergenic diet for dogs, IPD, from TroVet in the Netherlands. The product is scheduled to launch in September.
He also presented data on the amino acid profile of insect protein and how it is a sustainable ingredient for both human and pet diets, in terms of sourcing and recovering organic waste. In addition, he covered European Union regulations for the use of insects in pet food.
Petfood Forum Europe 2015, held in conjunction with Victam International, enjoyed record attendance of more than 200 pet food professionals from throughout Europe and the world—32 countries in all. That represented a 25% increase over the last edition of the conference in 2011. For more information, visit www.petfoodforumevents.com.