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Brookings, SD Changing consumer attitudes towards pet food are encouraging pet food companies to produce and market products that offer such qualities as 'non-GMO' and 'grain-free'. Consumer awareness and concern with accurate ingredient labeling steadily increases as mislabeling scandals continue to make headlines. The combination of heightened consumer concern regarding transparent and accurate ingredient labeling and manufacturers’ need to protect their brand integrity make DNA testing a valuable tool. Certified ingredient sourcing and tracking are important quality control steps, but are not infallible and errors can occur.   

The SGS Brookings lab has offered GMO testing in the agricultural sector for 13 years and now makes these services available to pet food manufacturers.  SGS regularly tests both raw and processed ingredients as well as final products. Sample DNA is extracted with tried and true methods and then highly sensitive real-time PCR methods are used to detect genetically modified DNA. The DNA lab regularly performs proficiency testing to assure quality control and is ISO 17025 accredited for GMO detection testing.

The newly available grain species detection testing for pet food is built upon the foundation of the GMO detection tests. These tests utilize species-specific DNA regularly used in the GMO tests to check overall sample DNA quality of various crops. Grain-detection tests can precisely and accurately detect the presence of corn, soy, wheat, or rice.

Meat species DNA identification is also now available. SGS Brookings’ new bovine detection service can detect presence of bovine DNA in even highly processed products down to a level of 0.1% beef or meat and bone meal (MBM) mixed into the final product. Horse, chicken, pork, and lamb detection is available for fresh or frozen meat ingredients or raw meat pet food products. Meat species identification protocols were sourced from government testing protocols, the European Union Reference Laboratory for Animal Proteins (EURL-AP) recommended protocols, and peer-reviewed scientific publications.

In addition to DNA testing, SGS offers a suite of services for the pet food manufacturing industry. Pathogen testing (including Salmonella and E.coli 0157) and spoilage organism testing (including mold/yeast and total plate counts) are available through the microbiology lab. The analytical chemistry lab can test for nutritional factors, mycotoxins, and chemical contaminants (such as melamine).   

SGS provides independent services that touch the lives of millions of people around the world including industry-leading inspection, verification, testing and certification services. SGS services enable clients to operate in a more sustainable manner by improving quality and productivity, reducing risk, verifying compliance, and increasing speed to market.

For more information, please e-mail us or contact:
Mariah Benesh
SGS Brookings
241 34th Avenue
Brookings, SD 57006, USA
t: +1 877 692 7611