I’m heading out to my first Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) conference today! I will be attending this mid-year conference with my dear friend, and colleague, Susan Thixton of Truth About Pet Food.
As co-founders of our consumer group, the Association for Truth in Pet Food, Susan and I represent the largest pet food stakeholder group in the United States.
Together, we represent over 82 million U.S. households that share their homes with pets.
Yet, despite the staggering number of consumers we represent, AAFCO meetings historically are rarely attended by people whose interests solely represent the consumer, and are primarily attended by people representing the pet food and animal feeds industry, along with representatives from every state agriculture division and federal animal feed control officials and veterinary officers from the Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Veterinary Medicine.
For the first time in many years, consumers are represented at AAFCO. Our association fought long and hard to be allowed to attend AAFCO meetings, a victory we won in the long battle ahead to bring positive change to the pet food industry. Being officially recognized as a stakeholder group is a huge step forward, one in which allows us to have meaningful dialogue with the people responsible for creating and upholding pet food and animal feed standards and regulations.
It is an honor and a privilege to be the voice for consumers and it is our hope that we can, together, make a difference.
We will keep you posted as the days progress.
And thanks to all of you who have generously supported our work through the years – we couldn’t do it without you!