Meow Mix Cat Food Ingredients

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Meow Mix manufactures roughly 37 different cat food products. Each product utilizes a unique set of ingredients to achieve a desired nutritional profile.

In this article, we'll explore Meow Mix ingredients and answer many of the most common questions.

As of right now, our records indicate that Meow Mix uses roughly 153 different ingredients.

First 5 Ingredients

Cat food ingredients in the United States are listed in descending order of pre-cooked weight. The first 5 ingredients typically constitute a significant portion of the recipe.

For Meow Mix, these are the most common ingredients found within the first 5 cat food ingredients.

  1. fish broth
  2. chicken by-product meal
  3. corn gluten meal
  4. corn gluten meal
  5. beef tallow (preserved with mixed tocopherols)

As you can see, the most common first ingredient in Meow Mix is fish broth. The most common 2nd ingredient is chicken by-product meal, followed by corn gluten meal, corn gluten meal, and beef tallow (preserved with mixed tocopherols).

Artificial Food Coloring Dyes

Our records indicate that Meow Mix does use artificial food coloring dyes. More specifically, we've identified 8 artificial food dyes used by Meow Mix.

Although these food dyes are classified as Generally Recognized As Safe (GRAS) by the FDA, we recommend avoiding them when possible.

According to the Center For Research In The Public Interest (CSPI), there are many potential health risks associated with the consumption of artificial food coloring dyes.

Given that most pets consume the same products for prolonged periods of time, these concerns should be taken seriously. In general, we recommend pet owners avoid feeding products which contain artificial food coloring dyes.

For more information regarding the CSPI's findings, read our artificial food coloring article.

yellow 6 lake
1 Recipes

Yellow 6 Lake is a non-soluble form of yellow 6, an artificial dye. According to the Center For Science In The Public Interest, yellow 6 can cause adrenal tumors in animals.

The following recipes contain yellow 6 lake:

red 3
1 Recipes

Red 3 is an artificial dye which the FDA has confirmed can cause cancer in laboratory animals.

The following recipes contain red 3:

yellow 5 lake
1 Recipes

Yellow 5 Lake is a non-soluble form of yellow 5, an artificial dye. According to the Center For Science In The Public Interest, yellow 5 may be contaminated with several cancer-causing chemicals. Like other dyes, yellow 5 lake does not provide any nutritional value.

The following recipes contain yellow 5 lake:

blue 1
4 Recipes

Blue 1 is an artificial dye with serious but unconfirmed health concerns. Like other dyes, blue 1 does not provide any nutritional value.

The following recipes contain blue 1:

Animal By-Products

Meow Mix does indeed use animal by-products. More specifically, 6 animal by-product ingredients were found during our analysis of Meow Mix cat food ingredients.

According to AAFCO, by-products are defined as the non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals. In other words, animal by-products are the leftover ingredients that humans typically do not consume (lung, heart, tongue, stomach, intestine, blood, etc).

Many consumers have equated animal by-products with slaughterhouse waste. Animal by-products are still very controversial. Most premium brands have abandoned them in favor of specific named organ ingredients (duck liver, chicken heart, etc).

If you must feed a product with animal by-products, ensure that the specific animal source is specified. In other words, avoid ingredients such as meat by-products or poultry by-products.

turkey by-product meal
5 Recipes

Turkey by-product meal is produced by cooking turkey by-products using a process called rendering. By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, turkey by-products contain nearly all parts of turkeys which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, turkey by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as turkey by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats.

The following recipes contain turkey by-product meal:

meat by-products
3 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, meat by-products contain nearly all parts of the animal which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>This ingredient is marked controversial because the meat source is not identified. Anonymous ingredients such as meat by-products are typically very low quality additions. The most unpleasing property of this ingredient is that the animal source can contain any mammal, even dogs & cats.

The following recipes contain meat by-products:

poultry by-products
1 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, poultry by-products contain nearly all parts of poultry which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, poultry by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that by-products, such as poultry by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats. Finally, we must also note that this ingredient is considered an anonymous meat ingredient because the specific type of poultry is not specified. By-products which are "named", such as chicken by-products are typically higher in quality when compared to the more general poultry by-products.

The following recipes contain poultry by-products:

chicken by-product meal
20 Recipes

Chicken by-product meal is produced by cooking chicken by-products using a process called rendering. By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, chicken by-products contain nearly all parts of chickens which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, chicken by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as chicken by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats.

The following recipes contain chicken by-product meal:

chicken by-products
1 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, chicken by-products contain nearly all parts of the chicken which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, chicken by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as chicken by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats.

The following recipes contain chicken by-products:

tuna by-products
1 Recipes

The following recipes contain tuna by-products:

Anonymous Meat Ingredients

Anonymous meats are animal-based ingredients which do not provide the source animal's name. These ingredients are controversial because they can come from almost any animal.

In addition, anonymous animal-based ingredients are very inexpensive and often the lowest quality meats that are still allowed to be used in pet food.

In general, we do not recommend feeding any products which contain anonymous meats. When in doubt, always contact the brand's customer service desk for further clarification.

Unfortunately, we've identified 11 anonymous meat ingredients used by Meow Mix.

fish meal
2 Recipes

Fish meal is defined by AAFCO as "the clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish or fish cutting, either or both, with or without the extraction of part of the oil." Since the specific type of fish is not mentioned, we cannot discuss any specific qualities of this ingredient. In general, anonymous ingredients are low quality inclusions when compared to ingredients such as tuna meal, salmon meal, catfish meal, etc.

The following recipes contain fish meal:

animal fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols)
5 Recipes

Animal fat is a by-product of tissue rendering. The source animal is not specific and therefore we cannot be certain that the source does not include diseased animals or even euthanized dogs and cats.

The following recipes contain animal fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols):

ocean fish
1 Recipes

Ocean fish can refer to multiple species of fish, since the particular type of fish is not specified, it's difficult to discuss this ingredient. The nutritional contribution of ocean fish depends on the species included; however, fish generally provides high quality protein and fat.

The following recipes contain ocean fish:

meat by-products
3 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, meat by-products contain nearly all parts of the animal which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>This ingredient is marked controversial because the meat source is not identified. Anonymous ingredients such as meat by-products are typically very low quality additions. The most unpleasing property of this ingredient is that the animal source can contain any mammal, even dogs & cats.

The following recipes contain meat by-products:

poultry by-products
1 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, poultry by-products contain nearly all parts of poultry which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, poultry by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that by-products, such as poultry by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats. Finally, we must also note that this ingredient is considered an anonymous meat ingredient because the specific type of poultry is not specified. By-products which are "named", such as chicken by-products are typically higher in quality when compared to the more general poultry by-products.

The following recipes contain poultry by-products:

poultry giblets
1 Recipes

Poultry giblets includes the heart, liver, gizzards, and other internal organs of poultry. Organs are nutritiously dense ingredients which provide high quality protein and fat. However, this particular ingredient is considered an anonymous meat ingredient because the type of poultry is not specified. In order words, "named" giblets such as chicken giblets or turkey giblets are preferred over poultry giblets.

The following recipes contain poultry giblets:

poultry heart
1 Recipes

The following recipes contain poultry heart:

animal fat (preserved with BHA)
8 Recipes

Animal fat is a by-product of tissue rendering. The source animal is not specific and therefore we cannot be certain that the source does not include diseased animals or even euthanized dogs and cats. What's more, this ingredient is preserved with BHA, an artificial preservative and possible carcinogen according to the World Health Organization.

The following recipes contain animal fat (preserved with BHA):

poultry meal
1 Recipes

Poultry meal is a controversial ingredient because the source animal is not specified. Anonymous ingredients such as poultry meal are typically low-quality ingredients in comparison to named protein meals (e.g. chicken meal, turkey meal, duck meal).

The following recipes contain poultry meal:

Cereal Grains

Certain Meow Mix cat food recipes contain one or more grains. The specific ingredients are listed below.

For cats, we typically recommend choosing a grain-free recipe. Cats are obligate carnivores and therefore grains are not species appropriate.

The kibble production requires a binding agent. Grains are commonly used for this purpose in cat food. When purchasing grain-free cat food, grains are often replaced with another starchy source. This is also not ideal.

To avoid grains and other starchy additions, consider feeding wet or frozen recipes.

corn syrup
4 Recipes

Corn syrup is made from corn starch and it's typically used as a thickener, sweetener, and humectant (keeps the product moist). It's considered controversial because it can raise a cat's blood sugar to unhealthy levels. Of course this concern may be nullified if the syrup is used in very small quantities.

The following recipes contain corn syrup:

brewers rice
4 Recipes

Brewer's rice is the small fragments of rice kernel that are separated from the larger kernels of milled rice. The fragments do not contain the same nutrition profile of the whole kernel and therefore brewer's rice is a lower quality grain. Brewer's rice is typically regarded as an inexpensive and low quality filler.

The following recipes contain brewers rice:

wheat gluten
5 Recipes

Wheat gluten is the main protein of wheat. Although wheat gluten is mostly protein, wheat gluten is considered controversial because it significantly boosts the protein content of the product. This is undesirable because plant based protein does not provide the same amino acid profile as meat based protein.

The following recipes contain wheat gluten:

whole wheat
4 Recipes

Whole wheat is one type of whole grain and contains the entire grain of wheat (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Wheat is regarded as an inexpensive and low-quality filler in pet food. However, wheat does provide plant-based protein and makes pet food more affordable for consumers. It's important to note that plant based protein does not provide the same amino acid profile as meat based protein.

The following recipes contain whole wheat:

ground whole grain corn
10 Recipes

Ground whole grain corn contains the entire corn kernel (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Corn is a cereal grain which provides a modest amount of vitamins, minerals, and plant based protein. It also happens to be one of the most controversial ingredients in cat food.</p><p>Proponents of corn claim that corn is highly digestible and an excellent source of protein, energy, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.</p><p>Opponents however believe that positive claims in regards to corn are either half-truths or completely false, we'll discuss a few of the opposing arguments.</p><p>In regards to digestibility, the claims of "highly digestible" are only true if corn is processed into a meal or flour and subsequently cooked. In regards to the protein contribution, we must note that corn is a plant based protein which does not contain all of the necessary amino acids required by cats to sustain life. Therefore substituting corn for meat is an unsuitable substitution and actually degrades the overall protein quality of the product.</p><p>Finally, we'll discuss the claims about vitamins and minerals in corn. Although corn does provide many vitamins and minerals, it not necessarily an exceptional ingredient in this regards. There are many other ingredients which are more complete and biologically appropriate. Therefore the usage of corn as the primary ingredient in cat food should certainly warrant further questioning.

The following recipes contain ground whole grain corn:

ground yellow corn
2 Recipes

Ground yellow corn is a cereal grain which provides a modest amount of vitamins, minerals, and plant based protein. It also happens to be one of the most controversial ingredients in cat food.</p><p>Proponents of corn claim that corn is highly digestible and an excellent source of protein, energy, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.</p><p>Opponents however believe that positive claims in regards to corn are either half-truths or completely false, we'll discuss a few of the opposing arguments.</p><p>In regards to digestibility, the claims of "highly digestible" are only true if corn is processed into a meal or flour and subsequently cooked. In regards to the protein contribution, we must note that corn is a plant based protein which does not contain all of the necessary amino acids required by cats to sustain life. Therefore substituting corn for meat is an unsuitable substitution and actually degrades the overall protein quality of the product.</p><p>Finally, we'll discuss the claims about vitamins and minerals in corn. Although corn does provide many vitamins and minerals, it not necessarily an exceptional ingredient in this regards. There are many other ingredients which are more complete and biologically appropriate. Therefore the usage of corn as the primary ingredient in cat food should certainly warrant further questioning.

The following recipes contain ground yellow corn:

rice flour
3 Recipes

Rice flour is a gluten-free carbohydrate source. As long as the bran and germ of the grain are included in the flour, rice flour can provide a notable amount of fiber and nutrition. However, because the type of rice ("brown" or "white") is not specified, we cannot make this determination.

The following recipes contain rice flour:

Controversial Ingredients

In most cases, ingredients which are given the controversial classification can be substituted with higher-quality alternatives. You should evaluate each controversial ingredient independently to see if there is truly a valid cause for concern.

Keep in mind, certain sacrifices often must be made to produce cat foods at a reasonable price. In general, the more expensive the product, the fewer controversial ingredients you'll find.

In our analysis, we've identified 30 controversial ingredients inside Meow Mix products. These controversial ingredients are listed below. Click on each ingredient for more information.

iron oxide
1 Recipes

Iron oxide is an FDA approved natural food coloring agent. It's commonly found in rusting metal and provides a reddish-brown color.</p><p>We believe food colorants are unnecessary ingredients in cat food. Other than potential harm, food colorants do not provide any nutritional value. These type of ingredients are used only to make the food look appealing to humans.

The following recipes contain iron oxide:

soybean flour
1 Recipes

Soybean flour contains more than 50% protein. Therefore, soybean can significantly boost the protein content of the product. The inclusion of non-meat protein typically degrades the overall quality of protein in the recipe. This degradation is due to the inferior amino acid profile of plant based proteins.

The following recipes contain soybean flour:

fat product
1 Recipes

Fat product is controversial because the source of the fat is not identified. Ingredients which do not clearly specific a source are typically very low quality ingredients.

The following recipes contain fat product:

powdered cellulose
1 Recipes

Powdered cellulose is produced from minuscule pieces of wood pulp and plant fibers. Other than its fiber content, powdered cellulose lacks any nutritional contribution.

The following recipes contain powdered cellulose:

turkey by-product meal
5 Recipes

Turkey by-product meal is produced by cooking turkey by-products using a process called rendering. By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, turkey by-products contain nearly all parts of turkeys which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, turkey by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as turkey by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats.

The following recipes contain turkey by-product meal:

animal fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols)
5 Recipes

Animal fat is a by-product of tissue rendering. The source animal is not specific and therefore we cannot be certain that the source does not include diseased animals or even euthanized dogs and cats.

The following recipes contain animal fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols):

corn syrup
4 Recipes

Corn syrup is made from corn starch and it's typically used as a thickener, sweetener, and humectant (keeps the product moist). It's considered controversial because it can raise a cat's blood sugar to unhealthy levels. Of course this concern may be nullified if the syrup is used in very small quantities.

The following recipes contain corn syrup:

brewers rice
4 Recipes

Brewer's rice is the small fragments of rice kernel that are separated from the larger kernels of milled rice. The fragments do not contain the same nutrition profile of the whole kernel and therefore brewer's rice is a lower quality grain. Brewer's rice is typically regarded as an inexpensive and low quality filler.

The following recipes contain brewers rice:

soybean hulls
2 Recipes

Soybean hulls are a by-product of soybean oil and meal processing. They are typically regarded as low quality and inexpensive fillers which lack any significant nutritional value.

The following recipes contain soybean hulls:

ground wheat
3 Recipes

Ground wheat is regarded as an inexpensive and low-quality filler in pet food. However, wheat does provide plant-based protein and makes pet food more affordable for consumers. It's important to note that plant based protein does not provide the same amino acid profile as meat based protein.

The following recipes contain ground wheat:

ground whole wheat
1 Recipes

Ground whole wheat contains the entire grain of wheat (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Wheat is regarded as an inexpensive and low-quality filler in pet food. However, wheat does provide plant-based protein and makes pet food more affordable for consumers. It's important to note that plant based protein does not provide the same amino acid profile as meat based protein.

The following recipes contain ground whole wheat:

wheat gluten
5 Recipes

Wheat gluten is the main protein of wheat. Although wheat gluten is mostly protein, wheat gluten is considered controversial because it significantly boosts the protein content of the product. This is undesirable because plant based protein does not provide the same amino acid profile as meat based protein.

The following recipes contain wheat gluten:

whole wheat
4 Recipes

Whole wheat is one type of whole grain and contains the entire grain of wheat (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Wheat is regarded as an inexpensive and low-quality filler in pet food. However, wheat does provide plant-based protein and makes pet food more affordable for consumers. It's important to note that plant based protein does not provide the same amino acid profile as meat based protein.

The following recipes contain whole wheat:

pea protein
4 Recipes

Pea protein is produced by removing the starchy parts of peas. Pea protein is considered controversial because it provides a substantial plant based protein boost. This boost is undesirable because plant based protein is typically lower in biological value when compared to meat based proteins.

The following recipes contain pea protein:

ground whole grain corn
10 Recipes

Ground whole grain corn contains the entire corn kernel (the germ, bran, and endosperm). Corn is a cereal grain which provides a modest amount of vitamins, minerals, and plant based protein. It also happens to be one of the most controversial ingredients in cat food.</p><p>Proponents of corn claim that corn is highly digestible and an excellent source of protein, energy, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.</p><p>Opponents however believe that positive claims in regards to corn are either half-truths or completely false, we'll discuss a few of the opposing arguments.</p><p>In regards to digestibility, the claims of "highly digestible" are only true if corn is processed into a meal or flour and subsequently cooked. In regards to the protein contribution, we must note that corn is a plant based protein which does not contain all of the necessary amino acids required by cats to sustain life. Therefore substituting corn for meat is an unsuitable substitution and actually degrades the overall protein quality of the product.</p><p>Finally, we'll discuss the claims about vitamins and minerals in corn. Although corn does provide many vitamins and minerals, it not necessarily an exceptional ingredient in this regards. There are many other ingredients which are more complete and biologically appropriate. Therefore the usage of corn as the primary ingredient in cat food should certainly warrant further questioning.

The following recipes contain ground whole grain corn:

caramel color
8 Recipes
ground yellow corn
2 Recipes

Ground yellow corn is a cereal grain which provides a modest amount of vitamins, minerals, and plant based protein. It also happens to be one of the most controversial ingredients in cat food.</p><p>Proponents of corn claim that corn is highly digestible and an excellent source of protein, energy, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.</p><p>Opponents however believe that positive claims in regards to corn are either half-truths or completely false, we'll discuss a few of the opposing arguments.</p><p>In regards to digestibility, the claims of "highly digestible" are only true if corn is processed into a meal or flour and subsequently cooked. In regards to the protein contribution, we must note that corn is a plant based protein which does not contain all of the necessary amino acids required by cats to sustain life. Therefore substituting corn for meat is an unsuitable substitution and actually degrades the overall protein quality of the product.</p><p>Finally, we'll discuss the claims about vitamins and minerals in corn. Although corn does provide many vitamins and minerals, it not necessarily an exceptional ingredient in this regards. There are many other ingredients which are more complete and biologically appropriate. Therefore the usage of corn as the primary ingredient in cat food should certainly warrant further questioning.

The following recipes contain ground yellow corn:

liver
3 Recipes

Liver is a controversial ingredient because the source animal is not specified. Anonymous animal ingredients are typically very low quality and may contain almost any animal, including dogs and cats!

The following recipes contain liver:

meat by-products
3 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, meat by-products contain nearly all parts of the animal which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>This ingredient is marked controversial because the meat source is not identified. Anonymous ingredients such as meat by-products are typically very low quality additions. The most unpleasing property of this ingredient is that the animal source can contain any mammal, even dogs & cats.

The following recipes contain meat by-products:

poultry by-products
1 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, poultry by-products contain nearly all parts of poultry which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, poultry by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that by-products, such as poultry by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats. Finally, we must also note that this ingredient is considered an anonymous meat ingredient because the specific type of poultry is not specified. By-products which are "named", such as chicken by-products are typically higher in quality when compared to the more general poultry by-products.

The following recipes contain poultry by-products:

poultry giblets
1 Recipes

Poultry giblets includes the heart, liver, gizzards, and other internal organs of poultry. Organs are nutritiously dense ingredients which provide high quality protein and fat. However, this particular ingredient is considered an anonymous meat ingredient because the type of poultry is not specified. In order words, "named" giblets such as chicken giblets or turkey giblets are preferred over poultry giblets.

The following recipes contain poultry giblets:

chicken by-product meal
20 Recipes

Chicken by-product meal is produced by cooking chicken by-products using a process called rendering. By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, chicken by-products contain nearly all parts of chickens which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, chicken by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as chicken by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats.

The following recipes contain chicken by-product meal:

corn flour
4 Recipes

Corn flour a ground cereal grain which provides a modest amount of vitamins, minerals, and plant based protein. It also happens to be one of the most controversial ingredients in cat food.</p><p>Proponents of corn claim that corn is highly digestible and an excellent source of protein, energy, vitamins, minerals, and essential fatty acids.</p><p>Opponents however believe that positive claims in regards to corn are either half-truths or completely false, we'll discuss a few of the opposing arguments.</p><p>In regards to digestibility, the claims of "highly digestible" are only true if corn is processed into a meal or flour and subsequently cooked. In regards to the protein contribution, we must note that corn is a plant based protein which does not contain all of the necessary amino acids required by cats to sustain life. Therefore substituting corn for meat is an unsuitable substitution and actually degrades the overall protein quality of the product.</p><p>Finally, we'll discuss the claims about vitamins and minerals in corn. Although corn does provide many vitamins and minerals, it not necessarily an exceptional ingredient in this regards. There are many other ingredients which are more complete and biologically appropriate. Therefore the usage of corn as the primary ingredient in cat food should certainly warrant further questioning.

The following recipes contain corn flour:

vegetable oil
10 Recipes

Specific vegetable oils are typically positive ingredients; however, this ingredient does not specify which vegetable(s) were used to produce the oil.</p><p>Without this information, it is impossible for us to make any specific statements. With any fat source, it is important to know the omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acid ratio, a property which cannot be determined with this ingredient. Thus, we have marked vegetable oil as a controversial ingredient.

The following recipes contain vegetable oil:

chicken by-products
1 Recipes

By-products are defined by AAFCO as the "non-rendered, clean parts, other than meat, derived from slaughtered mammals." Thus, chicken by-products contain nearly all parts of the chicken which are typically not consumed by humans. These parts include the liver, lung, spleen, kidney, stomach, blood, intestine, bone, etc.</p><p>Like other meat by-products, chicken by-products are considered controversial, mainly because they are inexpensive ingredients which consumers have equated with slaughterhouse waste. However, manufactures and many experts claim that animal by-products are unjustly criticized. Proponents state that "named" by-products, such as chicken by-products, supply many important nutrients required by cats.

The following recipes contain chicken by-products:

ground brewers rice
1 Recipes

Brewer's rice is the small fragments of rice kernel that are separated from the larger kernels of milled rice. The fragments do not contain the same nutrition profile of the whole kernel and therefore brewer's rice is a lower quality grain. Brewer's rice is typically regarded as an inexpensive and low quality filler.

The following recipes contain ground brewers rice:

poultry meal
1 Recipes

Poultry meal is a controversial ingredient because the source animal is not specified. Anonymous ingredients such as poultry meal are typically low-quality ingredients in comparison to named protein meals (e.g. chicken meal, turkey meal, duck meal).

The following recipes contain poultry meal:

tuna by-products
1 Recipes

The following recipes contain tuna by-products:

Potentially Harmful Ingredients

Harmful ingredients are those which have been linked to adverse health effects. In general, we do not recommend feeding any product which contains any harmful ingredients.

There are certain situations where these ingredients may be necessary. We always recommend contacting Meow Mix for further clarification regarding any harmful or controversial ingredient.

We have identified 15 harmful ingredients used in certain Meow Mix recipes. To learn more, click on the ingredient's name.

yellow 6 lake
1 Recipes

Yellow 6 Lake is a non-soluble form of yellow 6, an artificial dye. According to the Center For Science In The Public Interest, yellow 6 can cause adrenal tumors in animals.

The following recipes contain yellow 6 lake:

BHT
1 Recipes

Butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) is an artificial preservative and possible cancer-causing agent. BHT is banned in several countries, but the FDA has classified BHT as "generally recognized as safe."

The following recipes contain BHT:

red 3
1 Recipes

Red 3 is an artificial dye which the FDA has confirmed can cause cancer in laboratory animals.

The following recipes contain red 3:

yellow 5 lake
1 Recipes

Yellow 5 Lake is a non-soluble form of yellow 5, an artificial dye. According to the Center For Science In The Public Interest, yellow 5 may be contaminated with several cancer-causing chemicals. Like other dyes, yellow 5 lake does not provide any nutritional value.

The following recipes contain yellow 5 lake:

menadione sodium bisulfite complex
32 Recipes

Menadione sodium bisulfite complex is a synthetic version of vitamin K that has been linked to many health concerns. Research has suggested possible toxic reactions in liver cells and red blood cells among other serious problems. In fact, one large chemical supplier warns, "The substance is toxic to kidneys, lungs, liver, mucous membranes. Repeated or prolonged exposure to the substance can produce target organs damage."

The following recipes contain menadione sodium bisulfite complex:

blue 1
4 Recipes

Blue 1 is an artificial dye with serious but unconfirmed health concerns. Like other dyes, blue 1 does not provide any nutritional value.

The following recipes contain blue 1:

canthaxanthin (preserved with ethoxyquin)
3 Recipes

Ethoxyquin is an artificial preservative with possible links to cancer and other chronic diseases. Ethoxyquin is not permitted in the European Union and Australia, but considered safe by the FDA.

The following recipes contain canthaxanthin (preserved with ethoxyquin):

animal fat (preserved with BHA)
8 Recipes

Animal fat is a by-product of tissue rendering. The source animal is not specific and therefore we cannot be certain that the source does not include diseased animals or even euthanized dogs and cats. What's more, this ingredient is preserved with BHA, an artificial preservative and possible carcinogen according to the World Health Organization.

The following recipes contain animal fat (preserved with BHA):

fish meal (preserved with ethoxyquin)
4 Recipes

Ethoxyquin is an artificial preservative with possible links to cancer and other chronic diseases. Ethoxyquin is not permitted in the European Union and Australia, but considered safe by the FDA.

The following recipes contain fish meal (preserved with ethoxyquin):

tuna meal (preserved with ethoxyquin)
1 Recipes

Ethoxyquin is an artificial preservative with possible links to cancer and other chronic diseases. Ethoxyquin is not permitted in the European Union and Australia, but considered safe by the FDA.

The following recipes contain tuna meal (preserved with ethoxyquin):

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