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Bond Pet Foods and Hill’s Pet Nutrition Mark Milestone in Fermented Meat Proteins for Pet Food

Colorado-based fermented protein producer Bond Pet Foods has reached a significant milestone in its partnership with global pet food manufacturer Hill’s Pet Nutrition. The company has officially shipped its first two metric tons of animal protein produced via fermentation, enabling Hill’s to begin formulating prototypes for regulatory review and market assessment.

“Precision fermentation is an evolution of this technology”

Bond Pet Foods’ proprietary protein ingredient is made specifically for applications in pet food, using a similar process to brewing beer. The fermented proteins mirror the nutritional profile of conventional meat but without the environmental drawbacks. The collaboration between the two companies was originally initiated in late 2021 to develop an alternative to one of Hill’s most used meat proteins. And today, the companies have announced a second joint development agreement to explore additional sustainable animal proteins for Hill’s product line.

Bond Pet Food & Hills Pet Nutrition logos
©Bond Pet Foods

Dave Baloga, Executive Vice President of Science & Technology at Hill’s Pet Nutrition, commented, “Hill’s is known for its leadership in precise, complete and balanced, science-based nutrition. We are excited to continue our relationship with Bond and support their truly novel approach to [producing] animal proteins in a more sustainable way that meets our high-quality standards.”

In a recent interview with vegconomist, Rich Kelleman, founder and CEO of Bond Pet Foods, detailed the precision fermentation process, noting, “Precision fermentation is an evolution of this technology. It has been used for nearly half a century to make everything from enzymes (rennet) for cheese manufacturing to good bacteria for probiotics, vitamin B12, and lactic acid – we’re just reassembling the process to produce meat proteins that can be foundational for pet health.”

Bond Pet Food chicken protein
©Bond Pet Foods

Alt pet food sector

Other companies are also venturing into the alternative pet food space, with CULT Food Science in Canada recently releasing its third proprietary ingredient made through a fermentation and fractionation process. Shannon Falconer, CEO of cultured meat company, BioCraft Pet Nutrition, said to vegconomist, “[The] supply chain for meat is increasingly precarious, both in terms of price volatility and stock outs. Pet food manufacturers are desperate for a more stable alternative.”

Kelleman concluded, “Producing tons of product at the 45,000 liter scale is a major milestone in the Bond-Hill’s collaboration. Additionally, Hill’s commitment to expand on our work together demonstrates the opportunity we collectively see in Bond’s ingredients for their and the pet industry’s food future.”

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