A dog food manufacturer is free to sell for whatever they desire. So long as their product is being sold in an open market (the product is sold, not hidden, or sold by third parties where there’s no consumer demand), they can make the product more profitable by introducing new ingredients or processing techniques. But there is a limit to how many new ingredients they can add. In fact, there’s a saying among dog food manufacturers, “You can’t go too far.”
Here’s an example of the limits of what an open market can produce: If you buy two pounds of a specific dog food, but the one pound looks exactly like the other, and you can’t tell the difference (maybe it’s all water in the water bottle?), then you’d have to use two pounds of water in your dog food because it has a similar texture, flavor and appearance.
On the other end of the spectrum, if you buy a pound of dog food that looks exactly like the product you bought two pounds ago and can’t tell that it’s a different type of dog food? Well that’s a little tricky because we can’t tell whether it’s the same type of dog food or a different brand of dog food, it’s so close. Maybe you just eat a lot of different foods.
When the industry wants to add new ingredients, or even improve an existing ingredient or formulation, it doesn’t have to stop there. Some breeders and producers will even start to add new ingredients into the mix that were once considered “non-perishable,” or “dairy-free.”
But even if these ingredients are added to something that’s already profitable as-is, there’s no guarantee it’ll be profitable. So some breeders may try to sell off what’s left as ingredients, but sometimes they don’t succeed at selling the new ingredient to the public.
What’s to stop someone from making a new ingredient that is profitable but is so close to being labeled “non-perishable”?
Another problem with a new ingredient is that the animal nutrition community does not trust the results. That means that new formulas won’t be labeled as being “non-perishable.” And this, in and of itself, can be a problem.
Most dog food ingredients, which are already listed as “perishable,” “dairy-free” or “meat-based,” will remain available for some time. And if I have an ingredient that looks perfectly like it used to be non-per
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