ONTARIO, CALIF. — On March 28, The Gralen Co., a national wholesale pet distributor, announced it will now carry sustainable, insect-based dog treats by Forager’s Feed. The treats are formulated with black soldier fly larvae (BSFL) protein from Vivotein.
The treats are currently available in four varieties: Goji Berry and Pumpkin, Blueberry, Banana and Peanut Butter and a variety pack, which will all be available to pet retailers through The Gralen Co.
Vivotein develops the proteins used in the treats through a sustainable process, which diverts food waste from landfills and helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
"We are very happy that distributors like Gralen see sustainable protein development as a relevant and conscious trend in the industry," said Richard Vanegas, vice president of development and strategy, Vivotein. "This should be a global commitment. It is important to give our pets the best in nutrition, but it is also important to keep an eye on how we do it, and the resources required to do so."
According to The Gralen Co., the company is committed to sustainability by carrying products like Forager’s Feed treats.
"At The Gralen Co., we believe that it is important to offer products that have been sourced sustainably and that are good for our pets," said Michel Schnaas, general manager of The Gralen Co. "Forager's Feed is a great example of a USA-made product that is innovating by incorporating the nutritional characteristics of the black soldier fly while diverting food waste from landfills and reducing greenhouse gasses."
According to Vivotein, BSFL eat a variety of human foods, including expired and wasted items from grocery stores and bakeries. The company processes about 400 tons of food waste monthly to produce approximately 25 tons of dry insect larvae. Vivotein’s process of upcycling, a trending movement in pet food and other sectors, can help decrease food waste in landfills, therefore decreasing greenhouse gas emissions.
The production of BSFL protein also requires fewer resources and less space compared to the production of traditional animal proteins, without relying on grains, feed ingredients or vast amounts of water. According to Vivotein, an acre of cattle produces about 91 pounds of protein, whereas an acre of BSFL produces about 2 million pounds of protein in about the same amount of time.
In using BSFL, Forager’s Feed treats are high in calcium, proteins, and Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, and also contain amino acids and anti-inflammatory properties and anti-microbials to boost a dog’s immune health.
The Gralen Co. will distribute the treats by the case, with 12 packs in a case, to pet retailers throughout the US.
Read more about pet food and treat processing on our Operations page.