Nose-to-Tail Pet Food Reduces Carbon Pawprint

New Zealanders are seeking ways to live more sustainably. Whether that is by reducing our use of single use plastic, using a keep cup, walking instead of driving, or eating sustainably. So, what about our pets?

New Zealand King Salmon (NZKS) has been sustainably farming salmon for more than 30 years in the crystal-clear waters of the Marlborough Sounds, and together with Omega Plus, the pet food brand of NZKS, it is helping create a world-leading aquaculture industry.

Traditionally, in salmon production, once the prime fillet was removed the remaining salmon were most likely wasted. This all changed in 2016 when NZKS created processes to use the full nose-to-tail of their King salmon, and Omega Plus was founded.

Omega Plus is on a mission to provide pets with healthy and nutritious meals that are also better for our planet than other mass-market pet food brands.

Human grade offcuts are used to produce wet and dry pet food, while fins and tails are dried and become treats.

Utilising the entire salmon has an estimated 90 percent reduction in carbon footprint, compared to when the same raw materials were wasted. Not only that, but the smarter use of remaining materials has also increased direct and indirect job creation for New Zealanders.

Farmed and produced in New Zealand means Kiwis purchasing pet food from a local brand are automatically reducing their pet’s carbon paw print, when compared to an imported brand. combine that with Omega Plus’s sustainable practices and your pet’s impact will be reduced further.

“Waste is unacceptable in today’s world,” said Paul McIntyre, sustainability and stakeholder manager at New Zealand King Salmon.

“For New Zealand King Salmon and Omega Plus, waste is a lost opportunity, which is why we have become the first seafood organisation in New Zealand to adopt nose-to-tail utilisation by transforming raw materials traditionally considered as waste into highly nutritious food for pets.”

As self-professed animal lovers, Omega Plus is serious about creating healthy pet food using high-quality salmon that pets drool over. Farmed in New Zealand, the salmon is full of high-quality protein, rich marine-based omega-3 and omega-6, essential vitamins, and minerals to complete a balanced diet for pets. The superfood delivers a range of benefits including a healthy skin and coat, joint mobility, brand and heart health, growth, and immunity to ensure pets stay healthy and strong.

Another benefit of the salmon is that it has a lower carbon footprint than non-marine proteins (such as chicken, pork and beef), meaning Omega Plus is not only beneficial for your pet’s health but also the planet’s.

“Pets are part of our families, so making sure what they are eating is high-quality is important,” added Simon Thomas, divisional manager of Omega Innovations.

“Supporting local, shopping sustainably and reducing your environmental impact is an excellent choice for you, your four-legged friends and our planet.”

Omega Plus pet food is sold in approximately 250 supermarkets and specialty retail outlets in New Zealand.

Omega Plus tips for reducing your pet’s carbon pawprint:

  • Choose a more sustainable pet food option. Research and check the labels to ensure what you are buying is locally produced and utilises wasted raw materials.
  • Don’t over feed your pet. This can lead to all sorts of problems for your pet’s health and the environment if you are buying excessive amounts of food.
  • Consider more environmentally friendly poo collecting options. Use biodegradable poo bags when out and about. If you are at home use a pooper scooper and where possible compost the poop!
  • DIY pet toys. Make your own pet toys, seek second hand or swap with other owners, or buy eco-friendly versions.