THE IMPORTANCE OF A NATURAL PRESERVATION
The whole Farmina Vet Life and Natural & Delicious range are preserved exclusivelly with natural antioxidants (tocopherol rich extracts) which preserve the quality of our food in total natural respect.
Preservatives and antioxidants particularly, are compounds with the ability to delay, prevent, reduce or eliminate oxidative damage on food. Since the antiquity, mankind added compounds with preservative power to food, especially adding spices was one of the few effective methods to preserve food and prevent damage, mostly in warmer areas.
Some of the nutrients of food can easily run into oxidation: lipids, generally, have a greater tendency to lose electrons and self-oxidize leading to an alteration of color, flavor, texture, quality, genuineness and safety of food. For example oxidation may alter Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) or fat-soluble vitamins causing major changes in food quality, while the formation of volatile odoriferous compounds and hydroxy acids can affect aroma and flavor.
Dietary antioxidants preserve the food and have also a benefic effect on animals that eat them: on a body level antioxidants can reduce damages caused by free radicals and, in general, by Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) in addition they counteract cellular aging, reducing risk of chronic and degenerative diseases onset, often linked to oxidative stress.
Our aim of naturalness is therefore accomplished through the replacement of classical artificial antioxidants with only natural antioxidants. Artificial preservatives like BHA and BHT could have negative effects on the health of our animals, even though some of them could be seen only on a long term period and as a result of accumulation.
Synthetic antioxidants have been developed starting in 1940 in order to stabilize gats and oils, preventing rancidity. Generally they have a better antioxidant action and are more readily bioavailable than natural antioxidants.
TBHQ, BHA, BHT are the artificial antioxidants mainly used in food and their effect on health is still controversial. Several studies showed the existence of a correlation between the intake of such compounds and some alterations of animal organs to which they are administered, especially if at high dosage.
Literature reports side effects like: suppressive effects on leptin-dependent satiety circuits, chromosomal and spermatic abnormalities, interference with prostaglandin synthesis and immune response, induction of microsomial H2O2 formation, reduced contractility of smooth and cardiac muscle and influence in lipid metabolism and in vitamin E levels, transient elevation of plasma lipids and cholesterol; promotion of gastric, bladder, thyroid, and lung carcinomas onset; induction of hyperplasia and gastric cytotoxicity and liver, thyroid, adrenal glands and lungs hypertrophy.
These are the reasons why we decided to add to our formulas exclusively natural antioxidants, found in natural sources and including carotenoids, retinoids (Vitamin A), bioflavonoids (Citrin), polyphenols (hydroxytyrosol), tocopherols (Vitamin E) and ascorbic acid (Vitamin C), added in all our range both during the storage of raw materials and in the finished product. Many vegetables are naturally rich in antioxidants, such as some cereals (oats), beetroots and potatoes, fruits like pomegranate and orange but mostly some berries (blueberry, currant) and green tea.
Natural antioxidants can be added to food in higher quantities than artificial ones, as safety limits are higher; this implies higher production costs for the company which uses them, however justified by a higher healthiness.
Finally, as further guarantee of perfect and ideal preservability, all Farmina Vet Life and Natural & Delicious range are packed in a protective atmosphere in order to further prevent fats oxidation and maintain flavor and freshness, keeping the product fresh as just baked. This technology is largely used also in human food industry as nitrogen is a volatile gas naturally present we breathe daily.
WHY CHOOSE GMO FREE?
A Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) is a living organism with a genetic modified by genetic engineering techniques, which allow the addition, deletion or modification of gene elements. UE approach on GMO topic is based on the precautionary principle, by which any product containing transgenic crops could have potentially dangerous effects and since at the moment there is no chance to determine such risks with sufficient certainty, all these products undergo specific regulations and restrictions to protect human, animal and vegetal health, besides environment.
Although European Union allows the use of GMOs, albeit regulating it restrictively, Farmina goes beyond this precautionary principle by excluding from each formulation all potentially GMO ingredients. For this purpose we use only 100% GMO Free certified raw materials in our nutritional systems Natural & Delicious and Vet Life Natural Diets; we do not use any corn and we promote the use of ancestral cereals typical of traditional Italian food like spelt, oats and tubers such as potato.
We chose to avoid GMOs mostly because we intend to safeguard the health of our animals: it is hypothesized that GMO food could potentially introduce new toxins or allergens in previously safe and healthy food, they could transmit antibiotic-resistance, reduce the nutritional value of the food especially in the long run. Some studies have revealed how the animals fed with genetically modified crops could present structural configuration of the ileum, a cell proliferation in stomach walls and intestines, abnormal gene expressions, structural and functional changes in hepatocytes, impaired synthesis of zymogen and an increment in kidney and heart lactate dehydrogenase levels. In the same subjects are also reported an increase in triglycerides, liver hypertrophy, alteration of renal parameters and a general hepatorenal toxicity, occasionally associated to cardiac, adrenal or spleen involvement.
GMOs spread may lead to alterations mot only in animals fed with them but also in the environment (reducing biodiversity, transmitting to infesting plants pesticide resistance, promoting the evolution of more and more resistant parasites) at the risk of a change in the delicate balance which is the basis of our ecosystem.
For all these reasons one of the foundations of our actions is the respect of Nature as the ecosystem in which we live in and as physiological nature of our four-legged family to whom we want to offer only the best to ensure their well-being and health and therefore happiness.
Farmina, Happy Pet. Happy You.