ARE you a cat owner who spends a fortune on cat food? Have you ever wondered why a can of tuna for cats usually costs just as much or even more than an equivalent can for human consumption?
We asked a top official of Mars, maker of the widely popular brand Whiskas, the reason for this and his quick and short answer was (due to) science.
Hisashi Ishiyama, vice president of Mars Japan and chairman of Japan Pet Food Association, told MetroPets that there's simply a lot more science that goes in every can of canned tuna for cats than those made for humans.
“Tuna doesn't have all the nutrients a cat needs. Cat food manufacturers have to add a lot of vitamins and minerals to make it complete. Cats are also more sensitive about freshness so we need to have the right raw materials to go into their canned tuna. There are at least 40 different nutrients in different ratios that must be present in a cat food for it to be nutritionally complete,” Ishiyama explained.
Pet food companies also remove the unsaturated fatty acids from raw tuna before canning it. They also introduce less carbohydrates as cats cannot digest too much carbs, which shouldn't be more than 20 percent of their diets, added Ishiyama.
This means the processed tuna for cats is very much different from the canned tuna that people eat. On that note, cat owners only have science to "blame" for their cats' high-priced, tinned seafood meal. Ishiyama, however, said if retail prices of cat food becomes too high, too soon, then it could be that "someone is making a lot of money" which eventually could discourage cat owners from buying.
*Price Comparison as of June 22, 2019:
Whiskas Cat Food 400g (Tuna Flavor) – from P75 to P80+ in different stores
Century Tuna 420g (in Vegetable Oil) - from P80 to P83 in select groceries and online stores