With so much choice out there it’s great to know that there’s an indicator to set trusted pet foods apart. When considering what pet food is best to feed your pets your first point of call should be confirming that they are a member of the Pet Food Industry Association of Southern Africa (PFI).
In this day and age, where business is driven by profits and bottom lines, it is not unheard of for some of the lesser known or lower price bracket pet food brands to alter their registered food formula before it reaches shop shelves. While some manufacturers have been known to “steal” from the bag to line their own pockets, potentially leaving your pet at a nutritional disadvantage, others have publicly committed to upholding safe, quality pet nutrition, by joining the PFI.
It’s important to know that PFI membership is not compulsory within the pet food industry – pet food brands that choose to join the industry association have literally put their money where their mouth is to pledge that their pet foods are aligned with ethical and safe food processes, giving pet owners total peace of mind in knowing that what it says on their products is exactly what is in their products. Won’t you feel more assured feeding a pet food brand that is not scared to commit to these principles? After investigation, should you find that your preferred brand is not a PFI member and you’re feeling hesitant to make a change, why not make contact with the company to encourage them to join the PFI and stand together in these principles and adherence to the PFI’s strict code of conduct?
Brands are not all made equal and it is in the different permutations of ingredients PLUS the different quality of ingredients used in their composition that sets them apart. The PFI is proud to represent a broad spectrum of pet food brands, ensuring options of trusted brands to suit all income levels while still upholding international standards of quality & safety.
So, how does one decide which pet food brand is right for them? By adhering to the below 5 guidelines you can be sure that you are moving in the right responsible direction so as to be supplying the best, balanced, nutritious diet to meet your pets’ needs:
Ensure the pet food has been registered, which will indicate that the registered formula has met minimum nutritional requirements as attested by the Technical Advisor at Act 36 – look for the ‘v number’ on the packaging followed by ‘Act 36 of 1947’
Ensure the pet food brand is a member of the PFI – look for the PFI logo on the packaging or check online for a full list of members (www.pfisa.co.za) as not all are able to incorporate the logo on their packaging
If your pet has a medical or health ailment that can be addressed with diet, purchase a pet food that has been formulated to treat the issue (chat to your vet for the correct guidance
Purchase a pet food brand that suits your budget, opting for the best quality that you can afford
If your pet in not performing optimally on a specific brand, or is reluctant to eat it, shop around – you are, after all, spoilt for choice. Just ensure that you make gradual changes over a week or two so as not to upset the gastro-intestinal flora.
While the PFI does busy itself policing the market to check on member brands and to uncover deceptive brands, doing random tests to ensure that the product is true to the label and that products being sold have been legitimately registered and are of the quality they profess, they do encourage consumer assistance. The PFI takes consumer concerns very seriously and will investigate complaints using independent, accredited laboratories. Issues are addressed with the brand or manufacturer in question and non-compliance is escalated to the Legislator (being Act 36 at the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF)). Concerns or queries can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or made via the PFI website (www.pfisa.co.za).