"Halo" Pet Food's Non Public "STUDY" Didn't Compare Kibble Digestbility Or Bio-Availability Against Any Other Feeding STyles #PETFOOLED
The Truth EventuallY Comes Out
In "Pet Fooled", Dr. Karen Becker says "even in your dry food choices, you have better quality dry food choices and you have horrible quality dry food choices." Dry food companies are all competing to win over consumers in the higher quality section. This means "less" of the questionable ingredients.
"Halo" has a new marketing claim utilizing "whole meat" as an ingredient versus "meat meal". "Halo" exposes the definition of meat meal and the process to make meat meal, and "Halo" says meat meal is less digestible than whole meat. They say that is why they use whole meat.
Why does "Halo" use an ingredient like whole, fresh meat and then process it into kibble? Part of this is because consumers purchase dry foods more than any other feeding style.
The interesting aspect of the "Halo" study is that it's not public. Also, they didn't compare the bio-availability and digestibility of their kibble foods to any other feeding styles. "Halo" isn't looking into which feeding style "whole meat" is most digestible and bio-available in. They didn't release information about optimum digestibility and bio-availability and where their product fits in. Is whole meat more digestible and bio-available in home cooked foods, dehydrated, freeze dried, or raw foods? They've ignored those questions. They may not want to draw any attention to the fact that kibble may be less bio-available and digestible than fresher feeding styles available on the market.
If you're a consumer buying a kibble but know fully that it's potentially LESS bio-available and digestible than a fresher option around the same price, you probably won't buy the kibble. You'll probably go for the fresher option if it's in the same price range. How much of the product that you're paying premium prices for is actually bio-available and digestible (consumed/used) by the cat or dog?
"Halo" mentions that they believe the "truth will always come out" so we have to ask...what are the truthful intentions of their "study" that they haven't publicly released?
They Only Focused On Kibble
Did "Halo" test their kibble against other feeding styles, such as canned, dehydrated, freeze dried, home cooked, or raw in order to see if their food is more bio-available or less digestible than the other feeding style?
"Halo" is not saying "we tested every feeding style and we're producing the MOST bio-available and digestible food we can possibly produce since we care about the ultimate health of dogs and cats."
They're not saying that.
Question to Halo: Did "Halo Pet Food" conduct digestibility comparison studies only on dry kibble foods?
Answer from David Yaskulka: Yes, the digestibility tests conducted by a US Independent Test Laboratory compared seven leading brands of chicken dog kibble (Halo, Blue Buffalo, Canidae, Merrick, Natural Balance, Purina Beyond and Wellness), and four brands of salmon cat kibble (Halo, Blue Buffalo, Purina Beyond and Wellness). Kibble is by far the best selling form of pet food – over 75% of the market -- and we compared the top brands that are similar in form and price to Halo’s kibble.
Who is the independent Lab?
"Halo" says that is "proprietary information". That means it's secret and they're not releasing it.
Where Can I read the Study?
"Halo" did not release the study publicly. So there's no way for a consumer or a peer to currently read the study and replicate it, or look at the parameters and details of the study.
The focus of this is similar to the "Blue Buffalo" marketing campaign when "Blue Buffalo" started questioning ingredients.
These companies are not talking about the feeding style of dry food being less appropriate or more appropriate than others. They're simply in competition to get customers as they market themselves as "better" than the competition.
It would be nice if "Halo" offered their study to consumers and peers to review. That would be a very transparent move in regards to the actual details of this study. However, they claim they went through an AAFCO process so they could....wait for it...include claims relating to this non public "study" on their packages.
So the packages matter more than the information being public for the health of dogs and cats?
Should I Feed "Halo"?
It is up to each and every consumer to decide what they want to feed or what they don't want to feed. The purpose of this article is to review and think about the current marketing claims being made by "Halo" in regards to bio-availability and digestibility. They have talked about this only in the scope of comparing themselves to competition, which means potentially winning over customers but they have left off all other comparisons of bio-availability and digestibility.
They're not saying their food is more or less digestible than other feeding styles and there's an honest truth there that needs to be discussed. You can be "less" or "more" bio-available and digestible than other feeding styles and still maintain integrity. Just be honest about it.
"Halo" CEO has been invited to have this conversation regarding dog and cat nutrition. We need to talk about the full scope of these topics and not just focus solely on what can go on packages for marketing.