Kitten Food, Flaxseed Meal and Omega-3 Fatty Acids
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With all of the different kitten food options and ingredients available, it’s important to learn what your kitten needs and what is less essential. You may have heard of flaxseed meal, an ingredient included in some wet cat foods. Is flaxseed meal, a source of omega-3 fatty acids, a necessity for your kitten?
Learn more about this ingredient and how it can affect your kitten’s health for the better.
What Is Flaxseed Meal?
Flaxseed meal is the ground seed of the flax plant. The oil in flax is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids like alpha-linoleic acid, which is the parent compound of other omega-3 fatty acids.
In kitten and cat food, flaxseed meal is used to provide omega-3 fatty acids to give a balance of omega-6 to omega-3 fatty acids in the diet. IAMS research shows that balancing the amount of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids helps maintain a healthy skin and coat.
Why Are Omega-3 Fatty Acids Important?
Including omega-3 fatty acids like alpha-linoleic acid in a kitten’s diet can help:
- Maintain skin and coat health
- Support healthy brain cells and learning ability
- Maintain healthy cell growth
Why Choose a Kitten Food with Flaxseed Meal?
Alpha-linolenic acid may be an essential omega-3 fatty acid; however, it may take several generations for the signs of deficiency to become evident in a cat. When choosing a wet food, consider one that contains flaxseed meal to help maintain your kitten’s health during this time of rapid growth and development. IAMS™ Perfect Portions™ Healthy Kitten Pate with Chicken is formulated with omega-3 sources, including flaxseed meal, to provide guaranteed levels of omega-3 fatty acids.
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- adp_description_block315Understanding Kitten Food Product Codes
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Understanding and learning how to decipher kitten food product codes will help you choose the right kitten food. While selecting the right ingredients is important, making sure those ingredients are fresh is just as vital to your young cat. Learn how to read the product codes of kitten food packages and cans with our handy guide.
What Is a Product Code?
A product code is a series of numbers and letters printed on the outer package of each product a manufacturer produces. This code provides information about when and where the kitten food was made.
As part of the product code, IAMS™ products include a “Best Used By” date, or the date at which the product is no longer considered fresh and should no longer be sold. This date is expressed in “ddmmyy” and “ddmmmyy” formats.
The second line of the product code represents company internal information for use in traceability and inventory control.
Line 1: (ddmmyy) (ddmmmyy)
Example: 040220 04FEB20
Line 2: 60351111## QQQQQQQ
This product should be used before February 4, 2020.
Depending on the production line, pouch products* may have code date information in a single or double line. By recognizing and understanding these codes, customers can make sure they are receiving a fresh product.
What Is Shelf Life?
Shelf life is the duration, measured in months, during which a properly stored kitten food product maintains its freshness. This means if a product has a 16-month shelf life, it is fresh for up to 16 months from the date of manufacture.
The shelf life for IAMS dry kitten foods is 16 months. All canned formulas have a shelf life of 24 months.
How to Properly Store Dry and Wet Kitten Food
Unopened dry kitten food products are best stored off the floor in a cool, dry place. Open bags of kitten food should be stored in a clean, dry container with a tight seal. Dry kitten food products may also be frozen without loss of nutrients.
Opened wet kitten food products are best kept refrigerated in tightly sealed containers for no more than three days after the container has been opened. Wet products should not be frozen in unopened cans. However, wet kitten foods can be frozen if removed from the container, packed in freezer containers and frozen immediately.
*IAMS has no kitten pouch products at this time.
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