Brandon Farms Organics (Dry)

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Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆

PRODUCT HAS BEEN DISCONTINUED

Brandon Farms Organics Dog Food dry formula earns the Advisor’s top rating of five stars.

Currently, the Brandon Farms Organics product line includes just one kibble. Brandon Farms Organics Chicken Formula has been designed to meet AAFCO nutrient profiles for all life stages.

Brandon Farms Organics Chicken Formula

Dry Dog Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

Protein = 31% | Fat = 16% | Carbs = 45%

Ingredients: Organic chicken, chicken meal, organic ground brown rice, organic ground oats, organic ground barley, lamb meal, organic chicken hydrolysate, organic peas, organic flaxseed meal, tomato pomace, chicken fat (stabilized with mixed tocopherols), natural flavors, monocalcium phosphate, organic sunflower oil, potassium chloride, salt, taurine, vitamin E supplement, choline chloride, zinc sulfate, zinc proteinate, vitamin A supplement, vitamin D3 supplement, organic dried tomatoes, organic cranberries, organic carrots, organic spinach, organic kelp, dried chicory root, turmeric, niacin supplement, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, d-calcium pantothenate, manganese proteinate, copper proteinate, thiamine mononitrate, copper sulfate, vitamin B12 supplement, riboflavin supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride, calcium iodate, folic acid, biotin, sodium selenite, rosemary extract, dried yeast fermentation solubles

Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 4.4%

Red denotes controversial item

Estimated Nutrient Content
MethodProteinFatCarbs
Guaranteed Analysis28%14%NA
Dry Matter Basis31%16%45%
Calorie Weighted Basis27%33%40%
Protein = 27% | Fat = 33% | Carbs = 40%

The first item in this dog food lists organic chicken. Raw chicken contains about 80% water. After cooking, most of that moisture is lost… reducing the meat content to just 20% of its original weight.

To reflect its lighter mass, this item should more accurately occupy a much lower position on the list.

Which brings us to chicken meal… the second and (most likely) the dominant meat ingredient in this dog food.

Chicken meal is considered a meat concentrate and contains nearly 300% more protein than fresh chicken.

The third ingredient is organic brown rice. Brown rice is a quality ingredient… a complex carbohydrate that (once cooked) is fairly easy to digest.

The fourth ingredient is organic oats. Oats are rich in B-vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber.

The fifth item is organic barley. Barley is a starchy carbohydrate supplying fiber and other healthy nutrients. Unlike grains with a higher glycemic index (like white rice), barley can help support stable blood sugar levels in dogs.

The sixth item is lamb meal… another high-protein concentrate.

Chicken hydrolysate is chicken protein that has been broken down into its individual amino acids. Hydrolyzed protein is probably used here as a flavor enhancer.

The eighth ingredient includes organic peas. Peas are considered a quality source of carbohydrates. Plus (like all legumes) they’re loaded with natural fiber.

What’s more, peas contain about 25% protein… protein that must be considered a contributor to the total protein in this food.

The ninth ingredient is organic flaxseed meal… one of the best vegetable sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. And flax seeds are naturally rich in soluble and insoluble fiber.

Tomato pomace is a controversial ingredient… a by-product left after processing tomatoes into juice, soup and ketchup.

Many praise tomato pomace for its high fiber and nutrient content… while others scorn it as a cheap pet food filler laden with pesticides found on the skin of the tomato before processing.

Just the same, there’s probably not enough tomato pomace here to make much of a difference.

The next ingredient is chicken fat. Chicken fat is obtained from rendering chicken… a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Chicken fat is high in linoleic acid… an omega-6 fatty acid essential for life. Though it doesn’t sound very appetizing, chicken fat is a quality ingredient.

From here, the list goes on to include a number of other items.

But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to have much of an effect on the overall quality of this product.

We note this dog food contains chelated mineralsminerals that have been chemically attached to protein. This makes them easier to absorb. Chelated minerals are usually found in better dog foods.

Brandon Farms Organics… the Bottom Line

Since Brandon Farms Organics contains a good number of quality organic ingredients, we are obliged to accord this line favored status as we consider its final rating.

That’s because organic ingredients are produced under remarkably strict government standards… standards which greatly restrict the use of any synthetic pesticides, herbicides, insecticides, hormones or antibiotics.

Just the same, we still need to evaluate the product’s protein, fat and carbohydrate content.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 31%, a fat level of 16% and an estimated carbohydrate content of 45%.

Above-average protein. Moderate fat. And slightly below-average carbohydrates (when compared to a typical dry dog food).

This is the profile of a kibble containing only a moderate amount of meat. Yet its difficult to ignore the exceptional quality of its certified organic ingredients and its lack of any noteworthy Red Flag items.

Bottom line?

Brandon Farms Organics is primarily a grain-based organic kibble using a respectable amount of chicken meal as its main source of animal protein… thus earning the brand a commendable five stars.

Those looking for a quality wet organic product may want to check out our review of Brandon Farms Organics canned dog food.

Enthusiastically recommended.

Important FDA Alert

The FDA has announced it is investigating a potential connection between grain-free diets and a type of canine heart disease known as dilated cardiomyopathy. Click here for details.

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Notes and Updates

05/01/2010 Original review
12/01/2010 Product discontinued

12/01/2010 Last Update

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