Tomato Pomace in your Dog Food, Cat Food – healthy or not?
NOT. Many pet food manufacturers include tomato pomace in their pet food and treat products. Pet food manufacturers advertise tomato pomace as an ‘excellent’ source of bioflavonoids, lycopene, nutrients and soluble fibre. Let’s take a closer look…
Tomato Pomace is a Popular Ingredient in Dog Food, Cat Food
Those lovely photos of lush, ripe whole tomatoes on product packaging are there to make you feel good about buying a product that appears to include fresh, nutritious produce.
Tomato pomace is a WASTE product left-over from processing tomatoes for tomato ketchup, tomato juice, tomato paste, etc. Tomato pomace is made from tomato peels, tomato seeds, and some tomato pulp.
Tomato pomace is what the food industry likes to call a ‘by-product’. So what’s the difference between a waste product and a by-product? If the food industry can find a way to profit from the sale of a waste product, that product is then called a by-product.
Tomato pomace is a readily available, inexpensive, bulk filler - this is why it is popular with pet food manufacturers.
Pomace is not a Viable Source of Nutrition
The pomace used in dog and cat food goes through two intense processing stages. Initial processing during the manufacture of made for human products as per this flow chart. Then further processing during the making of dry or wet highly processed dog and cat food. While the pomace retains nutritional value during the initial processing, the second round of intense processing destroys that nutritional value. Ask yourself this - if the fruit and veg added to your dogs, cats dry and wet food is viable – why does the manufacturer add reconstituted vitamins (typically made from GMO corn and soy), and minerals to the pet food? Because the vitamins and minerals in the fruits and vegetables are destroyed by over-processing.
Preservatives in Pomace
Tomato pomace goes rancid very quickly. The pomace must be either ensiled, sun dried, mechanically dried or chemically preserved. Pomace used in pet food is either dried or chemically preserved. You cannot tell from the product label what method of preservation was used. The chemical preservatives used to preserve pomace are toxic and carcinogenic.
Grown with a Cocktail of Chemicals
The tomato pomace in your dog food, cat food contains a lot of chemical residue. The tomato pomace used by the pet industry is sourced from non-organic tomatoes. These tomatoes typically contain 35 types of pesticide residues. 14 of the pesticides are suspected hormone disrupters, 6 are neurotoxins, 5 are known probable carcinogens and 3 are developmental toxins. The chemical residue is absorbed by, and most concentrated in the tomato skin. Remember - tomato pomace is primarily tomato skin, followed by seeds, and some pulp.
Tomato Pomace in Low End, Mid-Range and Premium Pet Food
Which pet food product lines use tomato pomace? Low end, mid-range and premium dry food, wet food, and treats. For example…
Artemis Fresh Mix
Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance
Dog’s Well Nutrisca
Chicken Soup for the Soul
Golden Eagle Holistic Health
Hill’s Prescription Diet
Hill’s Science Diet
I and Love You
Ivory Coat Natural Health
Purina Veterinary Diets
Royal Canin Veterinary Diet
Taste of the Wild
…and many more.
The list above represents a few of the many dog food, and cat food product lines that include tomato pomace. Notice the list above includes three lines of veterinary prescribed ‘foods’ marketed to ‘address’ serious chronic inflammatory health conditions. The pet food industry is not to be trusted. The truth is, pesticides are toxins that contribute to, and cause inflammatory conditions.
If you want to feel good about adding appropriate veggies, and fruit (i.e. tomatoes) to your dog’s and cat’s daily diet, try some of the produce on this list, and follow the instructions provided to ensure maximum absorption of nutrients.
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Article and graphics by Karen Rosenfeld