SUZHOU, CHINA — The China International Companion Animal Food Ingredients Conference (CAFIC) detailed the latest ingredient trends and technologies for the pet food industry from Aug. 15 to 17 in Suzhou. The conference, hosted by LAMB Consultancy Co. Ltd and held in conjunction with the Companion Animal Food Equipment Conference (CAFEC), welcomed more than 400 Chinese pet food professionals.

According to LAMB Consultancy, China’s pet economy is projected to be worth more than 240 billion yuan ($33.49 billion USD) by 2025. With this in mind, more than 50 pet food manufacturers sent representatives to participate in CAFIC and CAFEC.

The conference’s theme focused on functional ingredients and their part in improving pet health. Not only are functional ingredients growing in popularity within the United States pet food market, but they are also gaining consumer interest within China. CAFIC included 41 presentations from around the world on these functional ingredients and how they can be best leveraged to benefit pet health and intelligence.

Presenters included:

  • Greg Aldrich, professor at Kansas State University (KSU), who spoke on behalf of the US Grain Council on the use of sorghum in pet food products
  • Peng Li, Asia regional director of the North American Renderers Association (NARA), who compared the costs of rendered proteins to those of fresh meat and detailed the quality control requirements for US rendered products within the Chinese pet market
  • Erik Hansen, director of the USDA’s Shanghai Agricultural Trade Office, introduced various pet food ingredients used in the United States and the role the Agricultural Trade Office plays in the trade of Chinese agricultural products
  • Gianpaolo Bruno, director of the Italian Trade Agency’s Beijing Office, Lauren Gilbert, commissioner of the Australian Trade and Investment Commission, and Yu Hao, senior market specialist of Enterprise-Ireland, who detailed the pet food markets of Italy, Australia and Ireland and each country’s potential relationship with China’s market
  • Mian Riaz, pet food expert, who shared his insights on selecting the best protein ingredients for extrusion and a variety of different dry applications
  • Min Xue, research professor at the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences Feed Research Institute, who discussed the physio-chemical parameters of US pet food-grade poultry byproducts, pork meat and bone meal for extruded applications
  • Zhiwei Li, technical director of ADM-Wisium China Division, who spoke about basic micronutrient requirements in pet foods and how premixes should be manufactured
  • Loïc Bramoullé, application and innovative process engineer of Symrise Pet Food, who detailed the proper application of fats and oils in extruded products and palatability challenges
  • Boyu Zou, director of production of Wingbo Pet Food, who explained the role antioxidants can play in controlling oxidation levels of fats

The conference also showcased new and innovative pet dietary supplements, including:

  • QRILL Pet Antarctic Krill Meal and its impact on pet health and cognition, demonstrated by Guoyao Wu, professor at Texas A&M University, and Tonje Dominguez, director of specialty animal nutrition products at QRILL Pet
  • HYAPET® and its significant effect on skin and joint health in pets when added to supplements, demonstrated by Haiying Wang, director of products at Bloomage Biotech

Other companies and pet organizations, including APC, JRS, Huachang Animal Welfare, Singao, PhagePharm and Angel Yeast showcased their novel supplements to help improved gastrointestinal health in cats and dogs.

Among the numerous presentations, pet food specialists from Kerunde, Zhengchang Pet Food Engineering, Shugao Mechnical and Electric, Baojia Intelligent and Blue Ocean Technology shared their most recent developments in processing equipment for automation, coating, griding, fresh meat processing, extrusion, ingredient handling, packaging and more. Fuzheng Wang, chairman of Liaoning Oceanking Organic Pet Foods, debuted a recently completed, advanced pet food manufacturing facility in Chaoyang Liaoning.

During CAFIC, 23 pet food processors won the “2022 Hexa-I Award,” which recognizes manufacturers committed to ingredient control, supply chain management and quality. Yulong Yin, Ph.D., an animal nutritionist, awarded many individuals with the “2022 Hexa-I Award of Chinese Pet Food Industry,” including:

  • Fuzheng Wang
  • Yingchun Wang, chairman of Full Pet
  • Yiwu Wang, chairman of Metz Pet Food
  • Qing Li, chairman of Tai'an Taichong Pet Food
  • Rongkun Wang, chairman of Ronsy Pet Food
  • Bin Lv, chairman of Shandong Dehai Biotechnology
  • Shengbo Ye, co-founder of Alfie & Buddy
  • Yueyue Wang, commercial director of Mars Pet Food China
  • Jinfa Chen, technical director of Gambol Pet Food
  • Zhongming You, vice president of Petpal Pet Nutrition Technology
  • Jianshe Sun, general manager of FISH4PETS Pet Food
  • Han Peng, founder of Gaoyejia Pet Food

CAFIC also presented the “2022 Triple Hexa-I Award for Pet Food Ingredient Industry,” which recognizes ingredient suppliers and developers of processing technologies. Aike Li, chief scientist of the Chinese Academy of National Food and Strategic Reserves Administration, presented the award to 22 companies and organizations, including: US Grains Council, Symrise Pet Food, Bloomage Biotech, PhagePharm, Joinsha-Pet Like, Dongtai City Spirulina Bio-Engineering, Hunan Nuoze Biological Technology, Well Hope-Yufeng Bio, ADM-Wisium, Triple A a/s, Tyson Ingredient Solution, J. Rettenmaier Söhne, GMBH+CO.KG, APC, QRILL Pet by Aker BioMarine Antarctic AS, Enhalor International Tech, Singao Bio, Legendary Petfood Ingredients, Angel Yeast, Huachang Animal Health and Wing Pet Food.

Next year’s CAFIC and CAFEC events are scheduled for May 16 to 18, 2023, in Suzhou.

Read more about pet food and treat industry events.