Nutraceuticals in Pet Food

A bowl of raw food for a dog

The nutraceuticals pet food industry is presently worth about $5 billion based on research conducted by Mordor Intelligence published in Jan. 2016. The main reasons cited for the growing trend is favourable consumer acceptance of quality nutraceutical ingredients and a demographic that is increasingly better informed about health benefits of quality nutraceutical ingredients. People want to keep their pet healthy, and not just treat ailments after they happen. Nutraceutical are often used as both preventative and as part of a treatment program. Common ailments in pet include obesity, joint disease, skin and hair problems, oral health concerns and cancer. There are literally hundreds of different ingredients that are capable of exerting some type of health benefit for each ailment, or better yet to prevent ailments from occurring. The tricky part is designing a product that has achieves the maximum effect you are looking for, safely.

Many commonly used nutraceuticals are already used as flavouring agents, olfactory agents, and as topicals. The dietary amount needed to support a health benefit is almost certainly greater than that needed as a flavouring agent, and it is likely that many such ingredients are safe at the required inclusion levels.

The main categories of nutraceutical ingredients presently on the market as food ingredients and supplements are anti-oxidants, omega fatty acids, joint health products (such as chondroitin sulfate, glucosamine and MSM), and prebiotics and probiotics for supporting gut health and immune status.

Ingredients in pet foods are regulated in the USA and Europe, but not in Canada. Canada, however, does have a notification program in place for supplements (Veterinary Health Products). Many companies currently have ingredients in pet foods without adequate regulatory approvals in place. This may be fine so long as these companies have compiled their regulatory dossiers and are on their way down the approval pathway.

Further Reading

Get in Touch

Contact us for more information on how the Nutraceutical Alliance can assist with developing, researching, or regulatory compliance for your company’s future nutraceutical product(s).