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Bonding Over Nutrition: A Milestone in Hill's Pet Nutrition and Bond Pet Foods Partnership

Courtesy: Bond Pet Foods
Courtesy: Bond Pet Foods

Hill's Pet Nutrition and Bond Pet Foods reached a major milestone in their attempt to usher in a new era of sustainable pet food protein development. This partnership marks a significant leap towards reducing the environmental impact of pet food production, leveraging Bond Pet Foods' cutting-edge fermentation technology to create animal-free protein ingredients that mirror the biological composition of real meat.


On February 5, 2024, in fact, Bond Pet Foods dispatched the first shipment of 2 tonnes of fermented animal protein to Hill's Pet Nutrition Center in Topeka, Kansas. This protein is set to be a cornerstone in formulating test diets for regulatory and market evaluation, signaling a major advancement in the quest for sustainable pet nutrition solutions.


Rich Kelleman, the visionary founder and CEO of Bond Pet Foods, highlighted the significance of this achievement, stating, "Producing tons of product at the 45,000-liter scale is a major milestone in the Bond-Hill’s collaboration." This statement underscores the scale and ambition of their joint efforts, with Hill's commitment to expanding this partnership reflecting the potential they see in Bond's innovative ingredients for the future of pet food.


The test diets developed from this protein will serve as a crucial benchmark for future prototypes, aiming to gauge market acceptance. Moreover, these diets will undergo scrutiny by the US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) to ensure they meet all regulatory compliance and safety standards. This step is vital for paving the way towards more sustainable pet food proteins.


Bond Pet Foods employs precision fermentation, a technique rooted in a time-honored process used for producing a variety of products, from enzymes to cheese and vitamin B12. By refining this method, Bond has succeeded in producing traditional animal proteins, such as chicken, turkey, and beef, without the environmental and ethical concerns associated with conventional livestock farming.


Research published in PLOS One has shown that dogs and cats contribute to up to 30% of the carbon dioxide emissions from domestic meat consumption. The collaboration between Hill's Pet Nutrition and Bond Pet Foods represents a significant stride towards addressing this issue, making the vision of scalable, sustainable pet food proteins tangible.


Dave Baloga, Executive Vice President of Science and Technology at Hill's Pet Nutrition, expressed enthusiasm for the ongoing partnership, stating, "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 produce animal proteins in a more sustainable way that meets our high-quality standards."


Further solidifying their commitment to innovation, the companies entered a second Joint Development Agreement, building upon their initial collaboration announced in 2021. This agreement focuses on developing another animal protein for use in Hill's pet food products, reinforcing their dedication to advancing sustainable pet nutrition.


As Hill's Pet Nutrition and Bond Pet Foods continue to break new ground, their partnership not only represents a significant step forward for the pet food industry but also sets a precedent for sustainability and innovation in addressing the environmental impact of pet nutrition.

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