In 2014 Purina filed a law suit against Blue Buffalo alleging they lied to consumers with their “no chicken or poultry byproduct meals” advertising. In 2016 the two companies reached a settlement and Blue Buffalo alleged they were defrauded by their supplier.
Last week Wilbur-Ellis Feed and the co-owner of Diversified Ingredients Inc. plead guilty in federal court to mislabeling pet food ingredients for years. Specifically, substituting lower cost poultry feathers, ground into feather meal, and byproducts for premium ingredients. Because of the Purina vs Blue Buffalo law suit, we know Blue Buffalo received the adulterated ingredient. But the other pet food companies involved were not named so consumers have no way of knowing if they have been feeding poultry feathers instead of poultry meat meal to their pets.
Many pet food consumers know to avoid by-products and read labels carefully. We trust what we read on an ingredient label. It appears this trust is misplaced. Ironically, Wilbur-Ellis Feed states on their website, “The best relationships are built on trust, mutual respect, and a shared interest in the success of both parties. These have been the hallmarks of relationships Wilbur-Ellis has built with customers and suppliers since 1921.”
Trust – can you really trust that your pets’ processed food is keeping them healthy and not harming them? If you are not already feeding your pets a home-made meal with fresh ingredients, I strongly encourage you to make the switch.