Petfood R&D Showcase 2017 attendees learned that despite the grain-free pet food craze, a full 80 percent of the total US pet food market is still comprised of conventional ingredients like grains. Greg Aldrich, PhD, coordinator of Kansas State University’s pet food program, as well as a longtime industry nutrition consultant and author of the Ingredient Insights column, led off the research portion of the showcase with that data from Packaged Facts.
Ancient grains are gaining popularity in human foods, with the pet food industry closely following, as such the theme of the inaugural Petfood R&D Showcase was focused around the trend.
Attendees had the exclusive opportunity to learn from pet food experts on a variety of topics, including how to use grain-based diets to maximize pet food safety, an in-depth look at kill-step validation, how to harness cereal crop diversity for improved health, alternative co-products streams from grains used in pet food applications and more.
In addition to presentations on emerging research, attendees participated in six interactive lab demonstrations that emphasized the incorporation of whole and ancient grains. These activities, held in Kansas State University’s one-of-a-kind Grain Science complex included: exploring how the processing of different ancient grains impact hydration capacity, texture, and visual appearance of a finished treat; discovering the diversity of malted, sprouted and grain ingredients and the functionality it lends to pet food applications; and mixing different ancient grains, adding functional enzymes and choosing novel flavors to create unique baked pet treats.
To learn more about the topics discussed this year, click here. Petfood R&D Showcase will take place again in the fall of 2018 in Manhattan, Kansas.
Save the dates for these upcoming events:
Petfood Forum | April 23-25, 2018 | Kansas City, Missouri | Registration now open
Petfood Forum China | August 21, 2018 | Shanghai, China
Petfood R&D Showcase | October 9-11, 2018 | Manhattan, Kansas