Why Choose Human Grade Pet Food?

We think pets deserve to eat food that’s the same quality and purity as people food! We’re not talking pavlova and brie, of course, but human grade or ‘people quality’ food is actually a much healthier, safer and more conscientious choice for our animal friends. Pet food that’s deemed Human Grade is a really important distinction for the quality and integrity of the finished product.

At The Honest Kitchen, our human grade dog and cat foods are made from pure, clean, ingredients that are sourced responsibly, directly from human food suppliers. For example, we use the same celery that you might find in a soup or stuffing mix, and the same cranberries you’d eat yourself, in trail mix. In addition, our pet foods are actually made in a facility, and on the very same equipment, that produces human food products like breakfast cereals and bakery goods.

What does human grade mean?

According to the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO)* and FDA, a claim that something is "human-grade" or "human-quality" means that the product being referred to is technically "edible" for people, in legally defined terms.

Human grade pet food must be produced under 21 CFR 110 Good Manufacturing Practices and must also be manufactured, packed, transported and held in accordance with federal regulations for human food.

Why is ‘regular’ pet food not considered human grade pet food?

human grade pet food

'Regular’ pet food is classified as ‘Feed Grade’, because it’s unfit for human consumption as a result of the ingredients it contains or the facility, or way in which it has been produced. ‘Feed Grade’ products may include by-products, chemicals, fillers and parts from ‘4D’ meats (animals which are dying, diseased, disabled or deceased); pretty scary if you ask us.

Even if a pet food company uses some human grade ingredients, if they don’t actually make their product in a human food facility, they can’t legally call themselves a human grade pet food brand.

What's special about a human food facility?

Human food production facilities must incorporate a HACCP (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) plan for food safety which means they have stricter standards for safety, cleanliness, record-keeping and overall quality than facilities that produce traditional pet food.

The facility that makes The Honest Kitchen’s human grade cat and dog foods has Safe Quality Foods (SQF) Level II certification. This means we’ve got safety and quality standards in place that actually go above and beyond federal and state requirements. It’s an extra way of providing what we call ‘pet food peace of mind’.

Do Honest Kitchen staff actually taste the products?

human grade dog and cat foodYes! Because our human grade dog foods are 100% truly, really, and honestly human food grade, we’re able to actually taste the food ourselves. In addition to tasting our finished products as they come off the production line, we also taste individual ingredients on a regular basis, when we’re choosing which suppliers to buy from or working on a new recipe. Even our CEO Lucy tastes every ingredient we use, and every finished product we make.

All this means we get to walk our talk, stand behind (and try) everything we make, and make sure we’re putting out the best human grade pet food possible. This is what we stand for. Make an educated choice about what your pup or kitty deserves!

Our human grade dry dog food is gently dehydrated and made with the highest quality human-edible ingredients. All you have to do is mix it with water, wait three minutes and enjoy!

Read more about AAFCO Human Grade Labeling requirements >

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"Pet food good enough to eat - literally. " - New York Times

"Made with 'human food grade ingredients' but intended for dogs & cats." - The Wall Street Journal

"Pets deserve human grade meals too." - The Huffington Post