ARLINGTON, VA. — The Illinois Department of Natural Resources announced the name change of Silver carp to Silver Copi on June 22. Supporters of the name change include Chippin, a pet food company dedicated to developing foods that use planet friendly proteins, including Silver Copi.
The name change strives to help address public misconceptions of the species and its beneficial usage in human and pet food products. According to Chippin, the fish species was originally introduced to the Midwest to control algae growth. Since then, the species has overtaken the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, compromising up to 90% of the biomass and wreaking havoc on biodiversity.
In using a new name for the invasive species, Chippin hopes to aid in the restoration of biodiversity by protecting waterways. The company has become a leader in creating demand for Silver Copi for use in pet food.
“We are enthusiastic to support the Copi awareness building initiative,” said Haley Russell, founder and chief executive officer of Chippin. “By eating Copi, we create a more sustainable and transparent fishing industry.”
The name change of the species could also help decrease the overfishing of other species, like salmon, as supply of Silver Copi is extremely abundant throughout the United States. According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, “Twenty million to 50 million lbs of Copi could be harvested from the Illinois River alone each year, with hundreds of millions more in waterways from the Midwest to the Gulf Coast.”
Since 2021, Chippin has incorporated the invasive species into its pet food formulas. Currently, the company’s Silver Copi-based products include dog treats and food. The company also uses insect- and algae-based ingredients in a variety of pet nutrition products, including supplements.
“As we seek out alternative protein sources that address our climate emergency and meet our nutrition needs, overpopulated and invasive species like Silver Copi are a no-brainer,” Russell added. “Silver Copi deserves a spot at mealtime, for pets and their parents alike.”
Chippin’s pet food products are available via its e-commerce platform, as well as through Grove Collaborative, Thrive Market and Amazon.
Read more about sustainability efforts in the pet food and treat industry.