In a 29-billion-dollar pet food industry that serves 84 million U.S. households with pets, how many people do you think there is that work directly with State and Federal pet food regulators?
How many people do you think are advisors to the Association of Feed Control Officials (AAFCO), the association responsible for crafting model laws and regulations that are adopted by almost every state in America?
Two.
Only two people in the entire United States of America.
One of those people is me, and the other person is my dear friend and colleague Dr. Jean Hofve.
You cannot imagine the crushing burden of responsibility we both feel knowing that millions of consumers with dogs and cats depend on us to be their voice. However, despite the weight, we bear it because there is no one else at AAFCO who represents consumers. Very few people have the insight and knowledge of pet food regulations like us and are willing to work long hours, for years, without pay.
There’s another burden that I hesitate to mention because it involves doing something I have a profound distaste for - asking for help. Despite my aversion to begging, the truth is I can’t do this work without your help. Just as you and your pets depend on me to be their voice, I rely on you to help me be their advocate – their voice.
The advocacy work I do is all done on a voluntary basis. I am not financially compensated for the work I do. I don’t sell any pet-related products, and I don’t have any financial arrangements with pet food companies to promote their products. I rely entirely on donations from people like you.
I’d like to say that I receive enough contributions to make this work possible, but the truth is I don’t. In fact, twice a year I have to beg for just enough money to attend the twice-annual AAFCO conferences. Sadly, there have been more times than I care to admit, that because of lack of funds, I have had to attend the meetings virtually via a conference line.
Let’s not make this another year where I must attend by listening to the conference on the telephone.
This year it becomes even more critical that we attend AACO as one of our most valued colleagues was recently removed as an advisor to AAFCO, leaving just Dr. Jean Hofve and myself as your consumer advisors.
Please, won’t you help us to help the 107 million dogs and cats in the United States that are depending on us? 47 million cats and 60 million dogs in America deserve that their voices - their barks and meows - are heard at AAFCO.
As many of you know most processed pet foods – while advertised as superior – are made from industrial waste, and cannot and will not sustain health or long life. Therefore we have made animal food safety and the enforcement of pet food regulations a top priority.
The government that regulates pet food works closely with AAFCO, and the federal and state agriculture officials that attend these conferences listen to us. Whether in private conversations or at the table during meetings they listen to us. Although there are only two of us, we have a profound impact on them.
Won’t you help us help your pets? All we are asking for is a few dollars – the cost of a small tin of pet food – will help pay for our way to AAFCO.
We’re begging. Please – I ask you – help us.
Time is running out to pay for registering to attend the AAFCO conference. Pressure is mounting as the date to register early is quickly approaching - December 22 – just three days before Christmas.
Will you give us the gift of helping pets all over the country by sending us to AAFCO?
We are making changes at AAFCO, and although the progress moves at a glacial pace, the incremental modifications to the laws that will govern food for animals are differences that will have a profound impact for decades to come.
A donation from you will make a difference to companion and livestock animals all over the country this year – and for years to come. Make this a holiday that will have a lasting effect on the history of the animal feed industry. The future of the pet food rests with you.
Join us in making the future of food for animals brighter!


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Poisoned Pets is an independent research and advocacy organization dedicated to the safety of animal food. PP studies pet food products and measures whether those products are safe, and provides the benefits claimed by the manufacturer. Although PP does not directly impact legislation, PP advocates for meaningful pet food standards leading to safer food products for animals. Importantly, I not affiliated with the pet product or animal feed industries nor do I endorse their products. To find out more on how to support Poisoned Pets' advocacy work, visit the donation page at PayPal.