Farmina Cat Food (Dry) Review And Nutritional Analysis
- Meat is the first ingredient – 1 Star
- Uses some unnamed meats – 1 Star
- Above average protein content – 0 Star
- Less than 4 controversial ingredients – 0.5 Star
- Catological Discretionary Rating – 0.5 Star
Here’s a few important points:
- Meat is the first ingredient
- The cuts of protein seem mostly high quality, but there’s too many carbohydrate fillers – even if they’re mostly whole vegetables and fruits
- Extra vitamins and high quality, proteinate versions of some minerals have been added
- A decent option, but slightly too little protein and slightly too many carbs
Farmina’s product line includes 4 dry recipes/flavors.
Each recipe below includes its related AAFCO nutrient profile when available on the product’s official webpage or packaging: Growth (G), Maintenance (M), All Life Stages (A), Supplemental (S) or Unspecified (U).
The star rating is a rough average of all of the flavors in a single line of food. If an individual recipe scored lower or higher, we will mark that below, next to the flavor.
- Farmina Natural & Delicious Chicken & Pomegrenate (A) 2.5 stars
- Farmina Natural & Delicious Lamb & Blueberry (A) 4 stars
- Farmina Natural & Delicious Fish & Orange (A) 4 stars
- Farmina Natural & Delicious Ancestral Grain Chicken & Pomegrenate (A) 2 stars
Farmina Natural & Delicious Chicken & Pomegrenate was selected to represent the other products in the line for this review.
Farmina Natural & Delicious Chicken & Pomegranate
Dry Cat Food
|Estimated Nutrient Content|
|Dry Matter Basis||49%||24%||15%|
|Calorie Weighted Basis||40%||48%||12%|
Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content
Fiber (guaranteed analysis)
Is real, named meat the first ingredient?
Fresh Boneless Chicken, Dehydrated Chicken Meat, Potatoes, Chicken Fat, Dehydrated Whole Eggs, Fresh Herring, Dehydrated Herring, Fish Oil, Hydrolyzed Animal Proteins, Fiber Vegetable of Peas, Dried Carrots, Dried Alfalfa, Inulin, Fructooligosaccharides, Mannan-Oligosaccharides, Pomegranate Powder (0.5%), Dehydrated Apple, Spinach Powder, Psyllium (0.3%), Powdered Blackcurrant, Dehydrated Sweet Orange, Powdered Blueberries, Sodium Chloride, Dried Brewer’s Yeast, Turmeric Root (0.2%), Glucosamine, Chondroitin Sulfate, vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, vitamin E supplement, ascorbic acid, niacin, calcium pantothenate, riboflavin, pyridoxine hydrochloride, thiamine mononitrate, biotin, folic acid, vitamin B12 supplement, choline chloride, beta-carotene, zinc proteinate, manganese proteinate, ferrous glycine, copper proteinate, DL-methionine, taurine, aloe vera gel concentrate, green tea extract, rosemary extract, mixed tocopherols (a natural preservative).
Ingredients in red are controversial or of questionable quality.
The first ingredient in this cat food is fresh boneless chicken. Good.
While quality of the individual ingredient can vary, chicken is a very good protein source for cats.
It’s also important to note that chicken contains about 70% water, so when it is processed and cooked for use in cat food, it will become a smaller part of the total recipe.
The second ingredient is dehydrated chicken meat. Good.
Chicken is a very good protein source for cats.
The meat is dehydrated, which removes much of the moisture. This means that pound for pound, it has a much higher protein and nutrient level than a normal piece of chicken.
The third ingredient is potatoes. Bad.
These are typically used as filler in grain-free recipes.
They are not biologically appropriate and may cause digestive upset.
The fourth ingredient is chicken fat. Good.
Named animal fats in cat food is usually a good thing. Cats do need a fair amount of fat.
Chicken fat is a great source of healthy fats and omega fatty acids.
It is preferred to canola oil or unnamed animal fats.
The fifth ingredient is dehydrated whole eggs. Good.
Even though eggs are not meat, they are a highly digestible form of protein.
In fact, they are one of the most complete, bioavailable forms of protein for both humans and cats.
As long as it is not the main protein ingredient, the addition of egg is a quality ingredient
The sixth ingredient is fresh herring. OK, but with reservations.
Herring is a good low calorie, high protein fish.
Cats should not eat a lot of fish, but as a secondary ingredient in a food like this, it’s a reasonable way to increase protein.
Just like other ocean fish, higher levels of PCB and dioxin are being found in some herring, thanks to water pollution, so as noted, it should not be a major protein source.
The seventh ingredient is dehydrated herring. OK, but with reservations.
The information above is also relevant here.
The difference is that dehydrating the ingredient concentrates it, and allows more protein to be added per pound than non-dehydrated versions.
The eighth ingredient is fish oil. Good.
Fish oil can help to improve skin, coat, joint, and heart health in your kitty, because they contain EPA and DHA, two essential fatty acids.
The ninth ingredient is hydrolyzed animal proteins. Bad.
It should first be noted that we don’t like to see non-specific “animal” products being used.
We want to know where it comes from.
Hydrolyzing means that the protein is broken down into it’s component amino acids. This may help stop allergic reactions to some proteins, and may be easier to digest.
But it is most often used as a flavor enhancer.
In some cases, MSG may form during the breakdown of the protein. Labeling rules do not require manufacturers to include MSG on the label if it is added as part of a protein hydrolysate.
MSG by itself may not be harmful, but it may encourage your pet to eat more than it needs, which can lead to obesity.
Basically, this is a way to make the food tastier and add a bit of protein, and is not a necessary ingredient.
This recipe includes a number of other ingredients, but once you get down this far, none of them will be in large enough quantities to make a real difference, except for the added vitamins and minerals.
However, there are still a few things you should know.
Peas are a quality carbohydrate, but cats don’t need much in the way of carbohydrates.
They are full of fiber, but also contain a fair amount of protein, which we should keep in mind when judging the meat content of this food.
There probably aren’t many peas in here, but there really doesn’t need to be any.
It uses brewer’s dried yeast, which is a by-product of brewing beer. It is used for flavoring and for protein and B-vitamins.
However, some reports suggest that it can become very toxic to the liver, causing allergies and arthritis, in large doses.
This recipe uses the proteinate form of minerals, which means that they should be easier to digest for your cat, and be more readily available for her body to use to maintain her health. This is usually a sign of a quality food.
To read a more in depth article about any of the ingredients listed here, check out our Cat Food Ingredient Wiki (currently under development).
The Catological Verdict on Farmina Dry Cat Food
From top to bottom, this is an average dry product.
It includes a variety of different types of meat, which is good, but there is not quite enough meat in the recipe, which is not so good.
It’s certainly not a terrible macronutrient profile, but as just mentioned, it turns out to be quite average.
A few fillers are used, from potato to pea to oats. None of these are biologically appropriate for felines.
This is a decent, but not great example of a dry food you should be feeding your cat.
The protein in this is average, but the carbs are reasonably low, so we can safely assume that this is a mostly meat-based cat food, which is what we should be looking for to meet your carnivorous feline’s dietary needs.
To review, on a dry matter basis, this food is 49% protein, 24% fat, and 15% carbs.
As a group, the brand has an average protein content of 46%, and average fat content of 23%, and an average carb content of 20%.
Compared to the other 2000+ foods in our database, this food has:
- Average protein.
- Average fat.
- Above average carbs.
Because the first ingredient is meat, but there are a few fillers that bring the carbohydrate level up beyond where it should be, our rating for this brand is 3 stars.
Farmina’s Cat Food Recall History
We do not believe that a recall indicates a low quality food or company, and we respect the fact that sometimes things happen that cause a manufacturer to recall a food.
Usually these things are non-life-threatening, and we think it’s important to take a moment to be thankful about just how few recalls there really are in the industry, considering the enormous volume of food produced.
However, we do believe that a history of recalls may point to a larger issue with a company, and that discerning consumers want to know who they’re buying from, especially when it comes to something as important as the food you feed your beloved cat.
Here is a list of recalls that have affected the Farmina brand in the past:
- We could find no instances of recalls from Farmina
If you want to stay up to date on the latest recall information affecting your cat’s food, sign up to our email list and receive an email every time a recall is announced. We’ll also let you know about any updated ratings, recipe changes, or new cat foods on the market. (Our alert system will be launched shortly, check back soon.)
Where To Buy Farmina Dry Cat Food
We recommend purchasing your pet products from Chewy.com. They continually prove that they walk the walk while talking the talk, and I’ve never dealt with a more dedicated pet-parent base of people than those who work at Chewy.
Plus, they offer 20% off and free shipping on lots of orders.
Check out our ratings and reviews of the best cat foods in our comprehensive, data-backed guide right here.