Help on labeling requirements

Hello, I’m looking for help.
I am setting up making dog treats from home (UK). Small batches that are hand made.
At present I do not use ingredients of animal origin. I have been told that I need to list Analytical Values (ash, moisture, etc) but I am being sent from pillar to post about how I find this out. Also no one can tell me how I work out the Best Before date. My local Trading Standards are on a learning curve with my requests so they have only been able to help so far. All the Government and organizations websites that I have been pointed to are full of jargon and that just ties me up in knots. Can anyone tell me in plain English what is required by law so that I can start selling? Any advice would be gratefully received. Thank you :).

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Hello and welcome to the forum. Presumably you have looked on the Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association website? Not being in the industry, I cannot help with your query but maybe our existing members who are in the trade might be able to give advice.

Thank you Dottie. I didn’t know about that site. I will check it out right away. :slight_smile:

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I hope that you can find useful information on there. Please let us know how you get on. This is an interesting query and one which we haven’t come across before.

Hello and welcome to the forum. I would be interested to know what you find out. Good luck with your venture. I hope you can go ahead without too many obstacles.

I e-mailed seven labs but just one said they could do the testing ’ if ’ I was using any dairy ingredients.
I also e-mailed P.F.M.A. on 19th Dec but am waiting for a reply. I guess things take longer with Christmas etc.
There is a couple of other small businesses making hand made dog treats but they include animal ingredients
so they would have had to go through the Analytical Values. I’m wondering if I have to do that part at all.
It seems that the simpler the idea the harder to get approval. Still stuck on Best Before date though.
I’ll let you know when I hear anything.


Hello Greathounds and welcome to the forum!

Making dog treats from home sounds like an excellent idea and one which I wish you every success with.

At this stage of the journey towards successfully manufacturing a pet food/treat, it’s as well to be aware that whilst trying to wade through what currently is looking like a daunting ‘mountain’ of hoops to climb, we can at the same time appreciate that these are in place to help protect the health of our pets - and manufacturer :wink: - to help ensure production of a trustworthy end product. That said, it’s no mean feat and hopefully the guidance in the article may help.

There is a Business Companion Guide entitled “Manufacturing your own pet foods” which states : " This guide covers the manufacturing of pet food, with particular emphasis on the domestic production of pet food and treats in your own home - for example, home-made dog biscuits."

And here is the link to the article:

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Hi Meg.

Thank you for your help.
Also, I managed to find a lab yesterday that do the testing for Analytical Constituents and Use By date.
I think the cost will be prohibitive. £180 per sample! I was hoping to provide a variety of flavours.
That’s alot of biscuits to sell especially as the profit margin is pretty small to start with.

Have a Happy New Year everyone :).

I wonder if it may be useful to be aware of the availability of audit reports on the Food Standards Agency’s website. These are documents of the FSA regulating local authorities regarding their feed and food law enforcement activities.

In a nutshell … part of the audit covers visiting a local feed business and samples being taken by an agricultural analyst which is in turn analysed by a laboratory.

With this in mind, I’d be inclined to approach a local authority and ask to speak to their appointed “Agricultural Analyst” who might be willing to offer further guidance to help with progress. [May also mention which laboratories are used and (one hopes :wink: ) at a reasonable cost].

Another idea to explore involves approaching other feed businesses in the local area as to whether it may be agreeable to send several (batches) together, as I’m wondering if laboratories may offer bulk testing at reduced rates.

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Oops :o apologies, forgot to post the link to the Food Standards Agency audit reports :

Thank you for the link.
I don’t think there is anyone in Orkney producing animal feeds but you
have made me wonder if the ‘dog treats’ could be tested as
people biscuits. There are alot of bakeries etc here. I do use human grade ingredients off
the shelf from the local grocers and supermarket.

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