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Meow Mix Cat Food was introduced into the pet food industry in 1974 and has since undergone many ownership changes. Most recently, in 2006, the company was purchased by Del Monte Foods for $705 million. This is one of the most popular cat food brands in the United States and can be readily found in most grocery stores and pet stores. Meow Mix cat food comprises of many products appealing to a wide range of cat owners. They produce wet cat foods, dry foods, and also sell treats for cats.
Unfortunately, Meow Mix has been under the spotlight in recent years and have accrued somewhat of a poor reputation. As this brand appeals to most cat owners due to its lower price, most of the ingredients are by-products or plant based grains that can potentially cause allergic reactions in cats. They have also been accused of using many “unnecessary” ingredients such as food coloring solely for the purpose of marketing to human consumers.
The good news about Meow Mix is that they have not had any recent recalls according to the FDA. They were not involved in the deadly melamine recalls in 2007 and have had no problems since then. While many cat owners claim Meow Mix has made their cat sick, there is no widespread substantial evidence to prove a direct correlation.
Below, you can get our full ingredients analysis for the top 10 ingredients in this food. Please feel free to rate this food above this article and leave any feedback or comments below.
List Of Ingredients In This Cat Food
Ground Yellow Corn, Chicken By-product Meal, Soybean Meal, Corn Gluten Meal, Beef Tallow (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Brewers Rice, Tuna Meal, Animal Digest, Phosphoric Acid, Calcium Carbonate, Shrimp Meal, Crab Meal, Trout Meal, Titanium Dioxide (Color), Choline Chloride, Salt, Vitamins [Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Source of Vitamin B1), Riboflavin Supplement (Source of Vitamin B2), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Source of Vitamin B6)], Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source of Vitamin K Activity), Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement], Minerals [Ferrous Sulfate (Source of Iron), Zinc Oxide, Manganous Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite], Potassium Chloride, Red 40, Yellow 6, Taurine, Yellow 5, Blue 2, Rosemary Extract.
Top 5 Ingredients Analysis
Ground Yellow Corn
As you might expect, this ingredient is simply yellow corn that has been ground into meal or flour. As with any other corn ingredient in cat food, this is a very controversial ingredient. Cats are obligate carnivores and do not receive much of any nutritional value from plant based and grain based ingredients. While it’s true that cats will eat the stomach contents of their prey in the wild, which usually includes plant based products, it is only consumed in small amounts and doesn’t really add any health benefits. Usually, this ingredient can be found in lower priced cat food because it can be used as a very cheap filler to help make your cat feel more full. However, since corn is a rather difficult to digest, many cats may have problems with this food. In addition, corn is one of the most well known food allergens for cats. While your cat may not suffer from corn allergies, it is a very common problem and one of the big reasons why this ingredient is so controversial.
Chicken By-product Meal
While this ingredient does provide a high amount of meat protein, this meat source is considered to be of lower quality than many other meat sources. Chicken By-Product Meal is produced through a process of cooking, drying and separation of fats and proteins from animal carcasses. It contains a dehydrated combination of meat (or cuts or parts) including lungs, spleen, kidneys, brain, livers, blood, bone, necks, undeveloped eggs and intestines. Usually, by-products are the “left overs” that can’t be used for human food consumption. The greatest fault of this ingredient is the same trait that makes it so affordable and so commonly found in pet foods. The unpredictability of what might (or might not) be included.
This ingredient is created after grinding the soybean to extract soybean oil. In addition to being used in dog and cat food, it is widely used as a filler and source of protein in other animal diets including pig, chicken, cattle, horse, sheep, and fish feed. This ingredient can often be found in “hairball relief” cat foods as it is believed to help eliminate hairballs. While some cats are allergic to soy based ingredients, the pet food industry is pretty defensive of this ingredient claiming that despite the attempts of researchers to prove a link between soy and bloat, no studies to date show this link. Rather, breed, body type, weight and stress level are significant risk factors. The pet food industry also claims that soy products are a superb source of bodybuilding protein, coat-nourishing vegetable oil and healthful fiber for cats. As long as your cat isn’t allergic to soy based ingredients, this ingredient shouldn’t pose any problems, but it isn’t included without controversy.
Corn Gluten Meal
This is the dried residue from corn after the removal of the larger part of the starch and germ, and the separation of the bran by the process employed in the wet milling manufacture of corn starch or syrup, or by enzymatic treatment of the endosperm. The expression “corn gluten” is colloquial jargon that describes corn proteins that are neither gliadin nor glutenin. Only wheat, barley, rye and oat contain true gluten. For the most part, this ingredient is normally only found in cheaper “grocery store brand” cat foods. Corn is frequently used as a filler ingredient to help make your cat feel more full, but it does not add much of anything to the nutritional value in the food. In addition, this is a common allergen for many cats and corn based ingredients can often be difficult for cats to digest. That’s why we can’t recommend this food for cats with food allergies or sensitive digestive systems.
Beef Tallow (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols)
According to this website, in short, beef tallow is a rendered cooking fat made from the fat of a cow. In other words, this is beef fat. Since cats are obligate carnivores, this is actually a beneficial ingredient and provides and excellent meat fat source. As natural foods increase in popularity, so, too, does the demand for natural preservatives such as mixed tocopherols. While everyone would prefer no preservatives be used in any food, that simply isn’t possible with commercial pet foods and mixed tocopherols is one of the least controversial preservatives.
Additional Ingredients Of Interest
Brewers rice is the small milled fragments of rice kernels that have been separated from the larger kernels of milled rice. It is a processed rice product that is missing many of its nutrients, but does provide a source of carbohydrates. It is a by-product of rice milling and considered a lower quality filler ingredient usually used in lower priced cat food blends. Usually, brewers rice is used to make rice flour, but if the quality is too poor for rice flour, it will then be sold to pet food or dairy feed companies. For many cats, this ingredient can cause allergies or digestion issues. Most cats will not have any problems processing this food, but it’s not one of the better ingredients, either.
This ingredient is a well known saltwater fish. There is some debate about whether fish products should be included in cat food at all, because cats by nature do not eat much sea food. A lot of cat owners would rather see meat from other animals such as beef, chicken, turkey, or other meat sources. However, tuna does supply a good amount of protein and also contains an excellent amount of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Since this is in “meal” form, it means the moisture has been removed prior to the cooking process. This enhances the number of nutrients in the food after the cooking process has been completed.
Animal digest is a common ingredient used in pet foods. As defined by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, digest is produced by the chemical or enzymatic hydrolysis of clean animal tissue that has not undergone decomposition. This is considered a very low quality ingredient. Another way this ingredient can be explained is that it is a cooked-down broth which can be made from unspecified parts of unspecified animals. Not exactly a comforting thought. To be fair, pet food companies like Purina say, “Animal digest provides protein and flavor. Animal digest is extremely palatable and is an excellent source of high-quality protein. It’s often used in small amounts to enhance the taste of dry pet foods. Spraying animal digest on kibble or mixing it with the food significantly increases palatability.” You decide.
Phosphoric acid is a clear, colorless, odorless liquid with a syrupy consistency. It is is used as an acidifying agent which helps balance the acidity level of the food. While some cat owners like to stay away from this ingredient due to its acidic nature, the FDA says this is still the safest way to balance acidity levels.
Calcium carbonate is a dietary supplement used when the amount of calcium taken in the diet is not enough. Calcium is needed for healthy bones, muscles, nervous system, and heart. Since many cat foods do not contain enough calcium in the food naturally, it is often added as a supplemental inclusion as seen in this food.