BRUSSELS — FEDIAF, the European Pet Food Industry Federation, on March 6 issued a new regulation for dietetic pet food formulations, referred to as PARNUTs, or animal food “intended for particular nutritional purposes.”

These diets include those that could assist with heart disorders, gastrointestinal issues, kidney problems, weight management or liver disease, as well as certain nutrient intolerances, as defined by FEDIAF.

“A considerable number of cats and dogs suffering from acute and chronic metabolic issues have a vital need for tailor-made nutrition. The adoption of this modern and science-based regulatory framework is the guarantee that pets with particular nutritional needs will continue to have access to the right nutrition,” said Robin Balas, chairman of the FEDIAF PARNUTs Task Force.

FEDIAF explains that these diets are largely recommended by veterinarians in Europe, and in the United States they are required to have a written recommendation from a veterinarian for a pet owner to purchase them.

The regulation ensures these diets are marketed appropriately and encourages veterinary professionals to prescribe them to help treat health issues in dogs and cats. Starting March 25, it will require that pet food products labelled before March 25, 2022 will have to follow its marketing guidelines in order to be placed on shelves.

Julien Taïeb, deputy secretary general of FEDIAF, added, “Looking to the future, it would be interesting to discuss how this new regulation could become part of a global standard for the pet food industry.”