What is a meal and why do you use it?
Meal is defined as any combination of bone, muscle, and organ meat that’s been ground up and dehydrated. We use only the highest quality meals – containing mostly organ meat and muscle meat with just a little bit of bone – to make ELM’s products. We always start with fresh meat first in our recipes, but our second ingredient is a high-quality meal – to ensure that your animal gets the appropriate amount of protein.
Many food companies will use fresh meat as their first ingredient, and then put a starch behind it as the second ingredient. The problem with that is that ingredient panels are sorted before cooking – which means that all of the water weight that the fresh meat has will come out, and you will wind up with a food that is more carbohydrate than meat-based protein. We avoid this problem by adding in high quality meal to ensure proper nutrition.
What is a menhaden fish?
Menhaden belong to the herring family. They are small fish that subsist by consuming plankton and algae. Because of their diet, they are an excellent source of omega 3 fatty acids that are rich in DHA, EPA, and DPA. These acids are important because they help cognitive function, vision, the cardio-vascular system, skin and coat health, joint function, and blood chemistry. Many people are concerned with mercury contamination levels in fish. Menhaden tend not to have this problem, since typically mercury contamination occurs in deep water fish (menhaden fish are considered to be a mid-depth species).
Why do you use peas and chickpeas in your diets? Aren’t carbohydrates bad?
Yes, too much of anything is a bad thing. But, all kibble-type food has to have some carbohydrates to hold together. We use chickpeas and peas in ours because they are lower on the glycemic index than other grain substitutions. For instance, potatoes are commonly used to replace grain as the carbohydrate source in many grain free foods, however they digest rather quickly (releasing a lot of blood sugar into the animal’s system) and can cause blood sugar spikes. Chickpeas and peas tend not to cause this.
Chickpeas and peas are also abundant in natural fiber – another factor that many other grain free foods often don’t take in to account when they formulate their recipes. Fiber is important since it helps the digestive tract function properly. As a result, we’ve seen a lot of anal glad issues with dogs that are typically on grain free diets – so when we made ours we made sure to include ingredients that would boost the fiber content naturally.
Why are your foods made in Mississippi?
Our food is made in Tupelo, Mississipi using Sunshine Mills’ facilities. We chose to partner with them because, like us, they are a family run company that takes pride in providing the utmost in service and quality assurance. They are a level 3 SQF certified facility. It is the same level of certification that’s needed to produce food fit for human consumption. We don’t put anything into our bags that we wouldn’t feel comfortable eating ourselves, and part of that is partnering with a facility that provides the utmost in cleanliness and quality standards.
Why did you decide to make pet food?
We love our animals. They’ve always been there for us, and we wanted to be there for them. Part of that is feeding them a good food, so they can live to their fullest potential.
Have a question we didn’t answer? Call us! You can reach us at 1-800-705-2111