What is Meat Meal, Really?

If it were really chicken, why are they required to call it chicken meal?

Meat (beef, lamb, pork, etc.) meal, poultry (chicken, duck, turkey, etc.) meal and fish meal are commonly used as a cheap source of protein, especially in dry pet foods. They are a way to spike protein levels but offer diminished nutritional value and minimal nutrient digestibility. Meals are typically rendered at 275° F for two hours, then dried at high temperatures, and finally cooked once more. Along with decreased nutrition and bioavailability, meals can also contain questionable ingredients, including diseased animals. In fact the FDA was recently quoted as saying:

“We do not believe that the use of diseased animals or animals that died otherwise than by slaughter to make animal food poses a safety concern.”

FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine Director

Might not pose a safety concern to the FDA, but definitely something no pet parent would knowingly want to feed to their dogs…

A meal isn’t the filet of beef or the chicken breast on the side of the bag. That’s just marketing.
The truth is that many companies who use meal can’t even tell you what their contents are. It’s just that hard to figure out what has actually been used to produce the powder.
That is why BIXBI never uses meat meals. It is not who we are. It is not helping us make healthier more nutrient rich food. It is a tool for making more money with poor ingredients, and it does not fit with our manifesto.