Dave Carter


Regional director


Flower Hill Institute

Presentation Description:

Pet protein ingredients from smaller meat and poultry processors: Challenges and opportunities — Carter details the work under way to develop smaller, regionally based meat and poultry processors to provide a potential source for unique pet food protein ingredients. Supply chain and infrastructure changes are needed to make these ingredients readily available to manufacturers, and Carter explains the what, how and why.


Dave Carter is a regional director for the Flower Hill Institute, which has a cooperative agreement with USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) to coordinate the technical assistance network that AMS developed to support producers and businesses developing or expanding smaller-scale meat and poultry processing enterprises. Before joining Flower Hill, Carter served for 21 years as the part-time executive director of the National Bison Association. During that time, he led the successful effort to gain new ingredient definitions in the AAFCO Official Publication to eliminate the deceptive labeling of water buffalo ingredients in pet products. Carter also served as the principal for Crystal Springs Consulting Inc. and worked extensively in the areas of organic policy and marketing, pet products development, cooperative development and other areas. Previous roles include working on behalf of the Pet Food Institute to develop the draft USDA Organic Regulations for Pet Products (still pending); serving on and chairing USDA’s National Organics Standards Board; directing sourcing and standards for Halo Purely for Pets (during which he successfully developed the first-ever USDA Processed Verified Program for pet products); and co-founding Pet Promise, the first retail pet food line with source-verified protein ingredients. Carter and his wife, Sue, own a herd of bison operated in partnership with two other ranch families on a holistically managed ranch.