News

Jul 18, 2016

AFB’s Oss Location Celebrates 1,000 days safe!

Safety is a very important part of our business and AFB’s overall success. Since the opening of the Oss location on November 16, 2013 we have not had any safety incidents in our facilities – the office or plant! There are many potential safety risks in a plant setting. However, we do everything in our power to train employees and staff on the safest ways to operate. Safety was a huge factor when building the plant. The structure of the plant and the equipment inside are designed to help ensure maximum safety. The layout of the factory ensures higher levels of safety with easy foot traffic and specific routes for fork lifts. With the modern layout, visitors to the plant can even view all of the equipment without ever entering the work space. All of these efforts and more help to control the processes and ensure safety.

Jun 17, 2015

AFB Presents Groundbreaking Insights – All About Cats!

Ever thought cats were finicky eaters? New research may give us insight about why cats are often perceived as finicky.
Dr. Michelle Sandau, Senior Basic Research Scientist at AFB International, recently published a paper in BMC Neuroscience regarding cats’ bitter taste receptors. With the oversight of Dr. Nancy Rawson, Senior Director of Innovation and Basic Research, the team concluded that generally cats’ bitter taste receptors seem to be more narrowly tuned for the same compounds that were tested against human receptors. AFB received a lot of coverage from all over the world regarding this research. The story was featured in more than 40 reputable scientific magazines, journals and blogs! Some of the highlights include Science Magazine, Science News and The Australian. For more information on this cutting-edge research, please read the press release below or contact us at afbinternational.com.

Jun 16, 2015

AFB Featured in Science World Magazine

Jun 10, 2015

Cat got your tongue? New research says ‘no’

Cat taste receptors respond in a unique way to bitter compounds compared with human receptors, according to research published in the open access journal BMC Neuroscience. The study represents the first glimpse into how domestic cats perceive bitterness in food at a molecular level, and could explain why cats are sometimes such picky eaters.

The ability to detect bitter chemicals is thought to have evolved because of its utility in avoiding toxic compounds often found in plants. All cats, from pets to wild tigers, are carnivores that consume little plant material. Domestic cats, however, may still encounter bitter flavors in food and medicines.

Domestic cats have a reputation of being rather unpredictable in their dietary choices. This could be explained by their perception of bitter, which differs from that of other mammals due to variations in their repertoire of bitter receptors. It is the goal of many pharmaceutical and food manufacturers to identify compounds that either block or alter bitter perception, to create a more palatable product.

The teams at AFB International and Integral Molecular studied the behavior of two different cat bitter taste receptors in cell-based experiments, investigating their responsiveness to bitter compounds, and comparing these to the human versions of these receptors.

TAS2R38 is a bitter taste receptor in humans of which some people have ‘supertaster’ variants that give them an extreme sensitivity to bitter compounds, explaining some people’s strong aversions to broccoli and brussels sprouts.

Compared with the human TAS2R38 receptor, the cat version was 10-fold less sensitive to a key bitter compound PTC and did not respond at all to another bitter compound PROP.

Like its human counterpart, the cat bitter taste receptor Tas2r43 was activated by bitter compounds aloin (found in the aloe plant) and denatonium (used to deter children and pets from consuming chemicals such as antifreeze) but responded differently to the compounds. The cat receptor was less sensitive to aloin and more sensitive to denatonium than the human receptor. It also differed from the human taste receptor by being insensitive to saccharin, an artificial sweetener that tends to have a bitter aftertaste in humans.

Co-author Nancy Rawson from AFB International, a pet food flavor company, said: “We confront the challenge of ‘finicky cats’ every day. As such, it is exciting to find an unexpected receptor response to bitter compounds that has never been described in the literature to date for any other species. These insights and future discoveries will be invaluable in formulating appealing food for cats, as well as enhancing the acceptability of their medications.”

Co-author Joseph Rucker from Integral Molecular, a biotechnology company, said: “Feline bitter taste has not been well studied. We applied our experience in studying membrane proteins, such as taste receptors, to enable this first glimpse into how domestic cats perceive bitterness in food at a molecular level. We were surprised to see that one of the cat taste receptors responded to a more limited range of bitter compounds compared to humans, suggesting that cats may be detecting a narrower, or at least a different, repertoire of bitter-tasting compounds.”

"The team also found that probenecid, a known inhibitor of human bitter taste receptors, also worked on both cat taste receptors, preventing stimulation when in the presence of PTC, aloin and denatonium.

The team says that these insights and further study could be instrumental in formulating appetizing food for household cats as well as designing masking agents to enhance the acceptability of medications.

The authors are employees of Integral Molecular and AFB International. Joseph Rucker is a shareholder of Integral Molecular. These data are part of a patent application filed by AFB International.

May 5, 2015

AFB Makes Play 4 Pets Donation to Lawrence Humane Society at Petfood Forum

AFB International is pleased to announce our donation to the Lawrence Humane Society in Lawrence, KS. The donation is the result of attendee participation at Petfood Forum 2015 in downtown Kansas City, MO. Each person who visited the AFB booth #507 had an opportunity to play skeeball and compete for the high score. The high score was acheived by Trenda McClaughry, a student from University of Arkansas who scored a whopping 210 points. AFB is doubling Trenda’s score and donating that in dollars - $420 to be exact, to the Lawrence Humane Society. The donation supports AFB’s mission of optimizing the health and wellness of companion animals.


About The Lawrence Humane Society
The Lawrence Humane Society provides shelter, care and advocacy to stray, homeless and abused animals; and nurtures the human-animal bond. For more information or how to help visit: lawrencehumane.org.


About AFB International
AFB International is a science and technology-based leader in pet food palatability. AFB researches, develops, manufactures, and sells products that make pet foods more appealing to pets and their owners. AFB is headquartered in St. Charles, Missouri, USA, and has offices and production capabilities around the globe. For more information, visit afbinternational.com.

Mar 18, 2015

AFB Hosts Local Youth Groups to Promote Science Education

As an enthusiastic, science based organization, AFB enjoys sharing our knowledge and passion about the pet food industry and science innovation in general. On February 10, 2015 Dr. Michelle Sandau and Bridgett Bennett hosted an American Heritage Girls troop. The “scientists for a day” toured AFB’s labs, conducted their very own science experiments and got a “taste” of what a career in science is like. All troop members successfully earned their science badge.

Dec 3, 2014

AFB Presents $10,000 to Local Aurora Philanthropic Programs

Aurora, MO, November 24, 2014 – AFB recently presented $10,000 grants to two local programs in the Aurora area – Come and Dine and The Aurora Dawg Pound.

The donation supports AFB’s core principle of community involvement and betterment through charitable organizations and educational institutions located in the communities where AFB International does business and where its employees reside. This year, AFB asked its employees for input on who should be considered for this year’s grants. Main Street Aurora made the request on behalf of the two programs. Read the full article.

 

About Come and Dine at First Baptist Church
Come and Dine runs for seven weeks during the summer months when children are not in school and provides them with two meals a day. The church has hosted the program for six years and has served 8,128 meals to date. The program director, Barbara Wommack, exclaimed, “I never thought I would get that much at once and this is necessary to keep our program going.”
 

About The Aurora Dawg Pound
The Aurora Dawg Pound promotes responsible dog ownership, good dog care and dog welfare. This grant will help implement a spay/neuter program and renovate the much-needed aging Pound. They estimate preventing 850 possible pets through the program. This year’s grant will also enable the group to continue adoption efforts.


About AFB International
AFB International is a science and technology-based leader in pet food palatability. AFB researches, develops, manufactures, and sells products that make pet foods more appealing to pets and their owners. AFB is headquartered in St. Charles, Missouri, USA, and has offices and production capabilities around the globe. For more information, visit afbinternational.com and to keep up with industry trends, visit our blog palatantsplus.com.

Apr 18, 2014

AFB Makes Play 4 Pets Donation to Naperville Area Humane Society

St. Charles, MO, April 18, 2014 – AFB International is pleased to announce a donation to the Naperville Area Humane Society in Naperville, IL. The donation is the result of attendee participation at Petfood Forum 2014 in Schaumburg, IL. Each Petfood Forum attendee that made a match in AFB’s “Take-Two” memory card game added to the contribution.

The donation supports AFB’s mission of optimizing the health and wellness of companion animals. Thanks to this successful event, the Naperville Area Humane Society will receive $540.

About Naperville Area Humane Society
Naperville Area Humane Society is a private, not-for-profit organization founded in 1979 to develop and implement animal welfare programs and services within Naperville and the surrounding area. NAHS’s goal is to protect animals and prevent animal suffering. Visit napervillehumanesociety.org for more information.

About AFB International
AFB International is a science and technology-based leader in pet food palatability. AFB researches, develops, manufactures, and sells products that make pet foods more appealing to pets and their owners. AFB is headquartered in St. Charles, Missouri, USA, and has offices and production capabilities around the globe. For more information, visit afbinternational.com.

Apr 11, 2014

AFB Receives Award from Missouri Department of Agriculture

St. Charles, MO, April 11, 2014 – AFB International was recently awarded the 2013 Excellence in Labeling Compliance Award from the Missouri Department of Agriculture.

The award recognizes consistent and accurate labeling on feed sample guarantees. AFB achieved a 100 percent passing rate. This award serves as confirmation of AFB’s policies and practices to deliver excellent, compliant products, AFB International Senior Regulatory Affairs Manager Nikita McGee says. “Customers can remain confident that the AFB brand is synonymous with quality, compliant pet food palatability enhancers.”

According to the Department of Agriculture, precise labeling not only ensures fair competition, but it also helps accurately gauge expected performance from animals while consuming your product.  “We commend AFB International for their success in ensuring accurate guarantees for nutritional values for their livestock feeds,” said Director of Agriculture Richard Fordyce in the award letter.

About Missouri Department of Agriculture
For more information about the Missouri Department of Agriculture and its programs, visit the Department online at mda.mo.gov.

About AFB International
AFB International is a science and technology-based leader in pet food palatability. AFB researches, develops, manufactures, and sells products that make pet foods more appealing to pets and their owners. AFB is headquartered in St. Charles, Missouri, USA, and has offices and production capabilities around the globe. For more information, visit
afbinternational.com

Jan 29, 2014

AFB International Europe Moves to New Location, Upgrades Capabilities

AFB International Europe

In line with the strategy of AFB International to expand our global footprint, we are proud to announce that late in 2013, AFB Europe moved to its new location in Oss, The Netherlands. This new state-of-the-art premises offers a high-tech production and research facility, combined with additional office space for our growing teams. The new Oss production facility will join AFB’s existing Ter Apelkanaal facility to provide expanded European production capacity and technology with the same high level of service. The contact information for the new AFB International Europe office is:


AFB International
Steenweg 20
5342 LZ Oss
The Netherlands

The new general telephone number is: +31 (0)88 82 30 000.

AFB International Europe looks forward to welcoming you at our new office location!