For the first time since the 1980s, we pet owners may find updated packaging and labels when shopping for pet food and specialty pet food products. That includes treats and supplements. In the first major update in more than 40 years, pet food nutrition facts will align more closely with current human food labeling practices. The goal is to provide nutrition information in one consistent format.
So, What’s Changing with Pet Food Labeling?
The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) has approved new labeling guidelines for pet food manufacturers and distributors that include:
- Standardized nutrition information which now more closely resembles human-food labeling.
- Intended use statement will help us easily identify the purpose of the pet food – complete food, treat, supplement etc.
- Clear ingredient statements clarify the use of consistent terminology, and allow common or usual names for vitamins.
- Updated storage and handling instructions (optional): Wording has been updated and standardized with optional icons for greater consistency.
AAFCO consulted with consumers and professionals within the pet food industry to ensure pet food labels provide a more comprehensive view of the product. The updated design and information are meant to ensure consistency and transparency to help consumers make more informed decisions when buying pet food.
When Can We Expect to See Changes?
Hopefully it will be soon. AAFCO announced this update in the summer. Now it’s up to the individual states to begin the process of adopting and enforcing the Model Regulations for Pet Food and Specialty Pet Food. AAFCO is encouraging uniform and timely adoption to ensure alignment and consistency. AAFCO began the Pet Food Label Modernization project in 2015. Their goal was to modernize and update the model regulations that set the requirements for pet food labeling. After eight years, I imagine they would like to see it swiftly enforced!
This AAFCO video explains what we will see when the pet food labeling changes start to hit our shelves.
Other Compassionate Animal Care Pet Nutrition Posts
Contact Your Vet Today
If you have any questions about your pet’s diet or pet food labeling, please call us or your own veterinarian. Call 480.774.6995 to schedule an appointment with Compassionate Animal Care in Queen Creek, AZ, today.