WESTCHESTER, Ill. —Ingredion on April 24 added two plant-based ingredients to its pet food portfolio for the United States and Canada, both of which are derived from peas. The high-functioning, grain-free and clean label ingredients cater to manufacturers looking to replace other starches and flours in new formulations.

PURITY P 1304 pea starch and VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate are applicable in canned pet foods, gravies, dry kibble, treats, biscuits and other formats. They provide texture and structure, improve water and fat binding, and act as a thickening and gelling agent in pet food and treat formulations.

PURITY P 1304 pea starch specifically helps bind ingredients, while VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate can increase extrusion and injection molding efficiency, according to Ingredion.

VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate can be incorporated by manufacturers to create more complete protein profiles and offers flexibility in developing new products or reformulating existing products.

“Today’s health and wellness trends are driving pet owners to seek clean and simple foods for themselves as well as their pets,” said Patrick Luchsinger, marketing and business development manager of pet food for Ingredion. “Ingredion’s PURITY P 1304 pea starch and VITESSENCE Pulse 1550 pea protein concentrate give pet food manufacturers two new options for creating grain-free, clean label products that will satisfy even the most discerning pet owners and pets.”

Ingredion invested $140 million to grow its plant-based protein capabilities in December 2018. These two new pet food ingredients will be sold under a joint venture with Verdient Foods, Inc., a part of its overall investment that has supported Ingredion’s capacity to develop pulse-based protein ingredients from peas and other legumes for human food applications.

"We've identified plant-based proteins as a high-growth, high-value market opportunity that is on-trend with consumers' desire to find sustainable and good tasting alternatives to animal-based proteins," said Jim Zallie, president and CEO of Ingredion. "We're excited by what these investments represent for Ingredion. Being a sustainable and trusted source of plant-based proteins provides us with another major ingredient platform to complement our offerings in clean label, wholesome, texture and nutritional ingredient solutions."

Consumer preferences have long been driving pet food trends. The push for clean label, sustainable pet food products have placed plant-based proteins front and center as pet owners become increasingly concerned about the overall health and wellness of pets and purchase products that match their human-food preferences.

Read more about product development, ingredients and formulation.