Australian supermarket chain Coles exposed for “Complete Cuisine” cat food not being “Complete”.
Or in other words, those solely feeding the food weren’t offering their cat the basic nutrition to sustain a healthy life.
You would assume a commercial pet food would offer your pet the bare minimum when it comes to nutrition, wouldn’t you?
Whenever I speak out about big brands deceiving consumers or selling unhealthy products I’m often faced with responses like “If it wasn’t healthy they wouldn’t sell it” or the old chestnut “My [cat/dog] eats it and he’s healthy, so the food must be good.”
I wish that were true, but sadly it’s not.
There are many ways we can be deceived and misled. Take the word “PREMIUM” for example. What does that really mean when it comes to pet food?
A “complete and balanced diet” must conform to minimum nutritional guidelines set out by AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials), which is what we adhere to in Australia as we don’t have a well defined standard.
Choice exposed Coles and awarded them a Shonky for their Complete Cuisine cat food. The product was additionally referred to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission for allegedly breaching consumer law. Choice first raised the issue with Coles a year ago, and it took the supermarket chain A WHOLE YEAR to undergo a re-labelling process to remove the word “Complete” from big letters on the front of the can.
The right thing for Coles to do would’ve been to make the food a complete and balanced diet, but as it’s about profit not your pet their answer was simply to change the packaging. The product has since been discontinued.
Sadly Coles aren’t the only ones guilty of deceiving customers in this way. I wrote about it last year on Pet Food Reviews – Many wet foods aren’t a nutritionally balanced diet.
It’s legal to sell pet food which doesn’t meet basic nutritional needs by writing “for supplemental feeding only” somewhere discreet on the packaging where nobody will read it.