To receive the benefits of vitamins (e.g., vision, growth, cellular differentiation, immune response, etc.), they must be provided at optimal levels. In fact, certain vitamins in excess, such as Vitamin A or Vitamin D3, can actually cause harm to the pet, including vomiting, dizziness, loss of muscular coordination, birth defects, and liver problems. Therefore, vitamin testing is crucial to not only ensure that our beloved pets receive the vital nutrients they need, but also to protect them from the harmful effects of high levels of vitamins or even too low levels in the premix.
With our pets’ lives literally on the line, Trouw Nutrition maintains its International Organization for Standardization (ISO)/IEC 17025:2017 certification for premix analysis, a specialization rare to the pet food industry, by completing proficiency testing throughout the year conducted by ISO-certified vendors.
Recognizing the importance and value of vitamin testing, Trouw Nutrition conducts its own global ring test, whereby an unidentified sample is tested across multiple locations and the results are compared.
Trouw Nutrition’s chemistry lab in Wyandotte, MI uses high-performance liquid chromatography, an analytical chemistry technique for separating, identifying and quantifying the various components in a mixture. The team employs a unique cleanup method between every sample vitamin test to prevent cross-contamination and ensure accuracy.
Thanks to the ISO-certified methods Trouw Nutrition developed decades ago and modifies to improve efficiency, the lab can obtain most vitamin test results in just two days, compared to the 7-14 days customary to the industry. The lab frequently conducts as many as 40 different Vitamin A samples in a single day, in addition to conducting many other vitamin tests.
“What makes the Trouw Wyandotte Analytical Laboratory unique? Two words: People. Experience. We have 70 years of experience within the vitamins business,” said Brian Giles, Manager of Trouw Nutrition’s vitamin analytical laboratory. “Most of the experience is lab-related, but we also have backgrounds in R&D, quality, stability, production, and premixing. This knowledge gives us the edge because we understand what goes into the products we are testing daily.”
Whereas some labs may not consistently run certain vitamin tests, Trouw Nutrition’s vitamin chemistry lab tests for A, D and Thiamin daily.
This ISO certification applies specifically to vitamin premixes, a specialization rarely given in the pet food industry but signifies that the facility has achieved a higher level of quality assurance and certification. The ISO certification also applies to straight vitamins.