The increasing understanding of the benefits guar gum presents as a natural and renewable source that is cost-effective, low in glycaemic index and a raw material that has water-soluble fiber make it a more frequently used ingredient by modern pet food manufactures and a preference of the health-conscious, pet loving consumers they are trying to win over.
Consequently, it’s no surprise that recent market analysis predicts the guar gum market is expected to soar tremendously in the coming years, with the utilization of guar gum in pet and animal food products heavily influencing this forecasted exponential growth.
The challenge for pet food manufacturers, however, is contracting with a guar gum powder supplier that provides transparency, reliability, quality, competitive pricing and an uninterrupted supply chain — something many guar producers are challenged with delivering.
It is for this reason, among others, that more and more pet food producers are turning to Guar Resources, the only US guar manufacturer from 100% US grown guar beans, as their primary supplier of certified guar gum powder for their manufacturing production process, above all for our transparency and quality but also for our dependability.
Read on to learn more about the increasing use of guar gum powder in pet and animal foods, the shifting demands and preferences of pet owners, the benefits guar provides to pets and pet food and why Guar Resources is becoming the leading trusted manufacturer of the finest quality, certified USDA organic guar.
We all love our pets and want the best for them in every way. They are our buffers against loneliness and our furry places to fall with their unconditional loyalty and affection. In reality, they give us so much more than we give them, and the very least we owe them is adequate shelter and food that is nutritious and safe for consumption.
The modern pet owner is very concerned about the quality of the pet food on the market today and spends quite a bit of time researching selected ingredients and their sustaining value. It is these advances in the pet food industry that have paved the way for the introduction of guar gum as a vital component of wet pet food.
A Few Relevant Statistics
According to the American Pet Products Association (APPA), the sale of pet products and services in the United States reached US $95.7 billion in 2019. Pet food and treats made up the largest portion of this total with annual earnings of US $36.9 billion in sales led by dog and cat food.
APPA analysts predict that the pet food and treats category will increase 4% by the end of 2020. This forecast is based on the growing popularity and demand for pet food mixers and subscription pet delivery programs.
In the words of Steve King, CEO of APPA: ”Consumers are more educated than ever before about the ingredients that go into the food they feed their pets, which means they are willing to pay more for quality products. As the demand for natural, minimally-processed ingredients continues, we expect to see steady growth in this category.”
Before the domestication of dogs in the mid-1800s, their food source was the great outdoors where they fed mostly upon raw meat. A more affluent middle class was borne after the Industrial Revolution and this brought about the domestication of both cats and dogs.
In 1860, an electrician named James Spratt (not the one of ‘eat no fat’ fame), developed the world’s first commercial pet food (dog biscuits), which he named: Spratt’s Meat Fibrine Dog Cakes. The biscuits were expensive and they were marketed exclusively to wealthy English gentlemen who could afford them.
A bit later, Spratt also targeted health conscious pet owners and dog show participants, and to further advertise his product, he bought the full front cover of the first American Kennel Club Journal in January of 1889.
The early 1900s brought about the concept of convenience in many new inventions and products. The first commercially canned dog food in the United States was produced by Ken-L Ration and it appeared in 1922.
Made of horse meat, it was stamped with a seal of government approval, and by 1941 was so successful that producers were breeding horses just for dog food and slaughtering 50,000 of them per year.
Outrage from animal lovers propelled a demand for a new, more shelf-stable product, and in the 1950s the Ralston Purina Company began experimenting with the machines they were already using for their Chex breakfast cereal to create a more palatable dog food.
In 1964, The Pet Food Institute (a group of pet food industry lobbyists) convinced the American public that kibble should be the main staple in dogs’ diets. At this time, advertising strategies focused on differentiating brands.
By the 1990s, both prescription kibble for different ailments and kibble based on individual activity level for weight management became popular options for caring animal caretakers.
Today, kibble is still an all time favorite among pet food manufacturers because it is a product that enables flexibility, density control and better pasteurization. Despite this, the modern commercial pet food industry has been plagued by frequent recalls and health controversies because kibble production is still disturbingly unregulated by governmental stipulations.
In an ironic twist, the more pet owners educate themselves about the dangers of highly processed foods and the importance of natural products and freshness, the more obvious it has become that animals may have been better off when they were living in the wild off meat and human-grade food a hundred and fifty years ago.
Pet owners have an unspoken obligation to provide the best food and health care available to the animals they love. The requirement of safe pet food is that it should remain fresh until the moment it is served to animals. Thanks to advances in technology, the pet food industry can now promise this without hesitation to consumers.
The industry has experienced great improvements in industrial science that have brought about the versatile and highly effective use of guar gum powder, which is present in almost every brand of wet pet food.
Guar gum powder has become essential to the canning process because it has amazing thickening properties. It is also a water-soluble gum, which can reduce fat migration in pet food. This can aid in the digestion of amino acids.
Guar gum is also ideal for use in pet foods because of its chemical make up. It is defined as a polysaccharide derived from various plant seeds that by their very nature, reserve energy for germination in the endosperm. This energy in the form of side sugar chains formed during the linking process gives guar gum the ability to retain other molecules, which is the quality that gives it superior thickening properties.
In order to meet the dynamic demands of consumers, food companies produce enormous amounts of wet canned food to which they add meat, fruits and vegetables. They then divide the entire batch into individual cans.
Guar gum powder is very effective in this part of the process because it stabilizes the position of the heavier ingredients and insures that all of the contents in each individual can remain intact. This eliminates the need for pet caretakers to stir the contents of a can after opening it albeit they have probably never even given this a passing thought.
The correct amount of fiber is very desirable in a cat’s diet, as it improves digestion by boosting the development of beneficial bacteria in a cat’s gut. These organisms reduce inflammation, protect the lining of the gastro-intestinal tract and boost general body immunity. Too much fiber, on the other hand, can cause a decrease in nutrients and looser, more frequent stools.
For many years, guar gum has been an integral part of cattle feed, as guar plants were often cut up and fed to animals as green foliage. The beans were also used, and they were boiled and fed to cattle as a source of protein. In fact, guar gum powder significantly contributes to high quality animal food and is inextricably linked to a farm’s economic stability.
Even more, guar meal is often fed to cattle, sheep, goats, buffalo, deer, elk, giraffes, camels and poultry as a natural replacement for protein supplements.
Additionally, protein from guar gum powder is used in animal feed, fertilizer and horticulture, and due to the fact that its protein content levels ranges from 5 to 6%, guar gum is often recommended for milking animals and is a favorite of aquariums as both a dietary source and thickening stabilizer in fish feed.
The finest quality guar gum for use as an additive in pet and animal foods at the best prices is available at Guar Resources. We produce millions of pounds of guar gum powder every year, and our leadership as the primary American producer of guar gum powder is due at least in part to heavy investments into the best tools in industrial science that money can buy.
In 2016, we opened a centrally controlled, state of-the-art processing plant where bean splitting and powder production is performed 24/7. The northern sector of our plant handles splitting operations and the southern converting the splits to powder. Our seeds are mechanically de-husked, hydrated, milled and screened according to application, and the beans are then processed into various intermediate products and powder.
Situated in Brownfield, Texas, where America’s southern plains and arid conditions offer the best climate for growing this drought-resistant legume, we have invented an industry that never existed in this region and brought countless jobs to the Texas population.
Even more, we are the only manufacturer of true USDA certified organic guar gum powder that is entirely made from beans grown on US soil.
We are also FSSC 22000 Food Safety Certified, ISO 9001:2015 compliant and wholly dedicated to supplying and servicing our customer’s needs with full transparency and without supply chain interruptions; something most other guar producers have been (and are) challenged with due to certain geopolitical issues and/or unexpected events like the Covid crisis.
It’s clear the benefits of guar gum powder for the pet food industry are many, and there may be even more waiting in the wings of time and scientific research.
If you’re a pet food manufacturer anywhere in the world looking for a more dependable, transparent supplier of competitively-priced, certified guar, send us a message or call our team today and discover how we can better serve your product and production process — (806) 637-4662.
Photo credits: Pixabay, Latimer Burnett and Library and Archives Canada
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