Natural pet meals are rising in popularity as canine and cat house owners develop into extra conscious of the impression of their beloved pet’s food regimen.
New figures launched particularly for the Guardian present that the variety of marine stewardship council (MSC) licensed natural seafood pet meals has grown 57% within the UK over the previous 5 years, from 49 to 77. Within the final alone 12 months. shoppers purchased over 7 million MSC-certified cans, baggage and packs of pet meals.
Globally, pets devour about 20% of the world’s meat and fish, and this determine will develop as shoppers feed them human meat. An space twice the dimensions of the UK is used to supply dry canine and cat meals annually, whereas roughly 3 million tonnes of fish are utilized in pet meals within the UK yearly. Pet meals is estimated to account for 1 / 4 of the environmental impression of meat manufacturing, together with emissions of greenhouse gases, phosphates and pesticides.
However now the variety of environmentally pleasant alternate options accessible is rising. Insect-containing pet food first went on sale in 2019 and may be bought at pet meals shops, and vegan manufacturers are rising in recognition. The market continues to develop as individuals notice that the meals their pets eat can improve their carbon footprint and comprise the flesh of poorly housed animals.
A latest examine discovered that vegan pet meals is simply nearly as good for canine and cats as meat. Nonetheless, the British Veterinary Affiliation nonetheless discourages feeding your pet a plant-based food regimen. The 2006 Animal Welfare Act additionally penalizes pet house owners for failing to eat a “appropriate food regimen” that meets their canine’s dietary wants, which may end in a £ 20,000 effective or 51 weeks in jail.
Andrew Knight, professor of animal welfare and ethics on the College of Winchester, stated on the time that his analysis confirmed that cats and canine had nearly as good or higher well being outcomes on a plant-based food regimen as they did when fed meat-based pet meals. offered they’ve been rigorously formulated with extra artificial vitamins.
Basically, fish has a decrease carbon footprint than meat, in line with a examine revealed within the journal Local weather Change Nature, which discovered that for each kilogram of fish caught, between one and 5 kilograms of carbon is produced, and crimson meat produces between 50 and 750 kg. carbon for each kilogram of meat.
Nonetheless, it is rather necessary that pet house owners select meals that accommodates fish that aren’t overfished, together with Cornish sardines. Considerations have additionally been raised about salmon following research which have recognized the environmental impression of salmon farming. And Animal Equality not too long ago found that there is no such thing as a oversight of UK fisheries.
Salmon is the preferred MSC licensed natural fish pet meals, adopted by cod, tuna, sardines and pollock. Just lately launched pet meals traces embrace shrimp from McAdams, Cornish sardines from Aldi and golden-red fish from Woofs.
George Clarke, program director for MSC UK and Eire, stated: “British pet house owners are more and more realizing that caring for his or her furry pals additionally means caring for the surroundings usually. Fish and marine life around the globe are in danger as overfishing threatens our oceans. We additionally know that seafood usually has a considerably decrease carbon footprint than meat, so shopping for natural seafood is likely one of the most optimistic choices pet house owners could make to reverse this alarming pattern.
“The Marine Stewardship Council not too long ago unveiled the Pet Meals Model Award for the primary time at this 12 months’s annual awards ceremony in response to the rising significance of sustainability for shoppers of natural pet meals.”