Since I made the mistake of thinking that BPA was only in the lining of pop top cans (and that it was in all pop top cans), I’m starting now to query various brands that we might want to feed our cats and get some up to date information about which brands of canned cat food use cans with BPA linings.
I’m starting with Wellness, because that’s what I currently feed my cats! I still have two cases of the 12.5 oz cans, but now that I’ve verified that those large cans have BPA in the lining material, I’ve bought some small cans to use along with them. That way whatever “dose” my cats might have received (probably miniscule but just taking no chances) of BPA will be cut in half by feeding them food from the non-BPA cans along with the 12.5 oz cans.
WellPet was very nice and answered my inquiry by email within a couple of hours:
Thank you for taking the time to write us about our Wellness® canned cat food.
At WellPet, we are committed to the highest standards of pet food safety. Our highest priority is providing you and your animal companions with consistently safe, premium-quality natural food and treats for pets.
Our 3.0 oz., 5.5 oz. and 6.0 oz. canned products are free of bisphenol A (BPA). However, some of our other canned products (12.5 oz. and 13.2 oz.) do have a small amount of BPA in the lining material.
We are staying on top of the latest research regarding BPA and will continue to evaluate our packaging materials and make the appropriate changes when functional alternatives exist.
Thanks again for contacting us.
WellPet Consumer Affairs Team
Next I wanted to find out about Purina, because my cats looove their ProPlan Chicken and Rice, and also because I have several friends who feed their cats the Friskies brand canned cat food. And of all things, the reason I started feeding them Wellness in the first place was because that I had heard that pop-top cans could be a cause of hyperthyroidism and the Wellness brand offered the large cans that have to be opened with a can opener! At any rate, Purina would not answer my question by email:
Thank you for contacting Nestlé Purina PetCare Company.
We appreciate your inquiry regarding our Purina(r) Pro Plan(r) brand Cat Food and our Purina(r) Friskies(r) Cat Food cans. Please contact our Office of Consumer Affairs directly at 1-800-778-7462 weekdays between 7AM to 7PM CST. One of our Pet Advisors will be available to personally address your concerns. Please provide the Pet Advisor with the reference number that appears in the subject line of this e-mail.
We look forward to hearing from you.
That wasn’t an automated email response to my filling out the form, either. I filled out the contact form on the weekend, and this email came to me 45 minutes before the end of their business hours today (Monday).
I called the Consumer Affairs number and asked point blank about the BPA in cans. I received an emphatic (but friendly), “NONE of our cans have BPA.” That’s great news. I had to go on and ask if they have Pro Plan in 5.5 oz cans, because 3 oz cans can get awfully expensive for people with multi-cat households, and the answer was no – Pro Plan only comes in the 3 oz cans.
Natura Pet: Evo, Innova, California Natural
I filled out their (Natura Pet) contact form again, asking if there is BPA in their 13.2 oz cans and/or their 5.5 oz cans. I got a nice email from them the next day.
Thank you for contacting Natura Pet Products. Our small aluminum cans 5.5 oz are free from BPA. Our large steel cans (13.2 oz.) contain BPA, but we are working with our supplier to find alternative options.
If you have any additional questions please feel free to contact me at your convenience.
Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul (made by Diamond Pet Foods, Inc.)
I filled out their contact form and received a response in one business day:
Thank you for your inquiry.
The inner surfaces of our cans that are in contact with the food do not contain BPA.
Thank you for contacting Eukanuba with your interest in our canned cat food. I am happy to address your inquiry concerning BPA.
Bisphenol A (BPA) is a monomer used in the manufacture of polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins. BPA can also be found in refillable water bottles, many plastics, and its use is standard in the manufacture of food can liners.
In some studies in rats and mice, BPA has been shown to adversely affect normal development and maturation processes. Importantly, there are no published data available from humans, dogs, or cats documenting adverse effects caused by BPA exposure.
There was an epidemiologic study reporting an association between feeding canned food and hyperthyroidism in cats. There was, however, no definitive cause and effect relationship determined in this research. It was uncertain whether BPA played any role in that relationship.
We do not formulate any of our pet foods with BPA or add it to any of our canned pet food products. Our current can lining is used broadly in the canning industry for both pet and human foods.
BPA is used in the lining for canned food products, both human and pet. The canning industry is working on the next generation of cans. In the meantime, there are no published reports linking BPA to adverse effects in dogs, cats, or humans.
I hope this information is helpful. If we can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to write or call us.
Please contact us anytime through our E-mail Us Now page located on our web site at www.Eukanuba.com. Or, look for instant answers on our web site FAQ. We would also welcome your call Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time at 800-423-6036.
I wish you and your cat the very best!
Another contact form response:
Thank you for visiting HillsPet.com and contacting us with your question. Your interest in our Company and our fine products is greatly appreciated.
The inner coating of 3oz & 5.5oz cans is used to protect the product from interaction with the can itself. The possible transmission of odor or aroma from the metal can to the product is reduced via the coating system. The coating is a water based epoxy system and BPA is present in epoxy coatings. The coatings used in Hill’s cans are approved for direct food contact by regulatory agencies globally. The composition of the can liners, including the levels of BPA, complies with those requirements.
We appreciate that you took the time to contact us. If you have any further questions or comments, please feel free to call our Consumer Affairs Department toll free at 1-800-445-5777 or visit our website at HillsPet.com.
Merrick did not have a contact form so I emailed their customer service email address asking about BPA in their wet cat foods. I got a nice email from them within a few hours:
Thank you for emailing us. I appreciate your interest in our line of food. I wanted to let you know that our canned cat food is 100% BPA free. I hope this helps ease your mind. Please do let me know if there is anything else I can do for you.
I have begun to fill out contact forms for other brands asking about BPA in cans. When I had Rosie at the vet school hospital for hyperthyroidism I asked the resident there about the link between BPA linings in cat food cans and feline hyperthyroidism and he said he fully believes there is such a link. His faculty advisor from his years in vet school is doing a research project on that – and of course many others have done so already. BPA in the amounts used in cat food can liners may be totally safe, but it never hurts to remove one risk factor in our cats’ environments when there are so many others which we can’t control.
Photo credit: kerryvaughan