What lab testing is required for Animal Feed and Pet Food Products by AAFCO Standards?
AAFCO is an acronym for the Association of American Feed Control Officials. While AAFCO is a United States association, it is a regulatory one that is comprised of local, state, and federal agencies. As an association made up of regulatory agencies, it provides a forum to develop animal feed and animal drug product regulations and standards.
Under AAFCO, laws, standards, and regulations are developed and implemented that relate to manufacturing, labeling, distributing, and selling animal feed and pet food. In some states, these AAFCO Standards have been adopted into law to protect buyers and the animals. However, since AAFCO is a private association, they have no authority to regulate the animal feed and pet food industry. They can only set voluntary standards to protecting consumers and ensuring a level playing field for the animal feed and pet food industry.
One of AAFCO’s area of greatest influence in the animal feed and pet food industries is the AAFCO standards and regulations developed for determining a “balanced diet” for pet food Due to the AAFCO standards, pet food manufacturers must perform nutritional testing of their pet food to determine if it meets the animal; s nutritional needs. It can then label the pet food as having nutritional adequacy and print the labeling claims statement on the pet food that it is, “complete and balanced”. For a pet food to be determined as complete and balanced, part of the testing required is the animal food manufacturer must perform an AAFCO feeding trial, or meet a dog or cat food nutritional profile established by the association.
Additionally, AAFCO regulations contain standards for feeding protocols. An example of AAFCO requirements for dog food include: using a minimum of 8 dogs in the dog food feeding trialstudy, only testing one dog food formulation and using it as the main source of the dog’s nutrition, and ensuring the dog food feeding trial study lasts 26 weeks. During a dog feeding trial food consumption is measured and recorded as well as body weight, hemoglobin, packed cell volume, serum alkaline phosphatase, and serum albumin.
In the US, feed regulations are enforced by state and federal regulatory officials. AAFCO has a AAFCO Regulatory Resource page for you to find the regulations that your state enforces. It can be read at AAFCO Regulatory Resources Page. And if you are interested in reading more about AAFCO lab testing requirements and guidance such as contacts, sampling methods, proficiency programs, you can visit AAFCO Laboratory
Are you an animal feed or pet food manufacturer or distributor that needs a contract research or test laboratory to ensure your animal feed or pet food meets AAFCO standards regulations for lab testing such as the animal feeding trials? Submit Request for AAFCO Lab Testing our website or by calling toll free 1-855-377-6821.
AAFCO & Other Pet Food Test Requests
- Food Laboratory needed for AAFCO full panel Pet food analysis for both dog and cat food. Food is either raw or cooked
- Full Pet Food analysis (AAFCO Cat food nutrient profile): Crude protein, fat, moisture, fiber, ash, minerals, vitamins, Amino acids. Please keep my contact information confidential. Lab needed for full AFFCO Cat food nutrient profile analysis of raw pet food products. Need to test for: Moisture,Crude Protein,Acid Hydrolysis Fat,Ash,Crude Fiber,Iron,Sodium,Potassium,Calcium,Phosphorus,Magnesium,Manganese,Copper,Zinc,Chloride,Iodine,,Selenium ,Amino Acid Profile, Taurine,Fatty Acid Profile,Vitamin A (Retinol),Vitamin B1 (Thiamine),Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin),Vitamin B3 (Niacin),Vitamin B4 (Choline Chloride),Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid),Vitamin B6(Pyridoxine),Vitamin B7 (Biotin),Vitamin B9 (Folic Acid),Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin),Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol), Vitamin E , VIt K
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