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TetraColor Tropical Granules Ingredients Analysis

Written by Kmuda. Posted in 1 Star Foods

Tetra Color Tropical Granules

Guaranteed Analysis
Protein 47.5% min.
Fat 6.5% min.
Fiber 2.0% max.
Moisture 6.0% max.
Phosphorus 1.5% min.

TetraColor Tropical Granules Ingredients:

Fish Meal, Dehulled Soybean Meal, Wheat Germ Meal, Wheat Flour, Corn Gluten, Feeding Oat Meal, Potato Protein, Shrimp Meal, Dried Yeast, Wheat Gluten, Monobasic Calcium Phosphate, L-Lysine Mono-Hydrochloride, Lecithin, Algae Meal, Soybean Oil, Ascorbic Acid, Inositol, Niacin, A-Tocopherol-Acetate, Riboflavin-5-Phosphate, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate, Choline Chloride, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin A Palmitate, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex, Folic Acid Cyanocobalamin, Cholecalciferol, Manganese Sulfate, Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Cobalt Sulfate, Beta Carotene, Red No. 3, Ethoxyquin, and Citric Acid.

TetraColor Tropical Granules Ingredients Analysis

Primary ingredient is fish meal. While we have no way of measuring the quality of the meal being used, we know Tetra purchases imported fish meal in bulk on the open market, indicating its nutrient and protein content is questionable. The next listed preferred protein source, the 8th listed ingredient (Shrimp Meal), is lower quality product than is fish meal.

The 2nd through 7th ingredients are non preferred protein sources. Use of Corn products is not desired due to digestibility concerns.

With only two potentially low quality preferred protein sources listed in the first 10 ingredients, it is safe to assume the preferred protein content of this food is less than desired.

Feeding Oatmeal is not the same "Oatmeal" you had for breakfast. This is "Oat MEAL", as in leftovers after the oats are processed for what you had for breakfast. It is classified as "animal feed grade oat meal" obtained in the manufacture of rolled oat groats or rolled oats and consists of broken oat groats, oat groat chips, and floury portions of the oat groats, with only such quantity of finely ground oat hulls as is unavoidable in the usual process of commercial milling.  It must not contain more than 4 percent crude fiber. A grain product high in carbohydrates with Protein content around 11% and a. fat content around 5%. It is added to fish foods as a filler and inexpensive source of protein.

Potato Protein is derived from de-starched potato juice from which the "proteinaceous fraction has been precipitated by thermal coagulation followed by dehydration" (a fancy way of saying "potato juice"). Its use in fish foods is as an inexpensive protein source.

Fish oil can be either a beneficial ingredient or a hazardous one. Human grade fish oil collected from specific specifies of fish and screened for mercury will provide necessary omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids as well as protein. Non-human grade fish oil may not be screened for mercury and originate from fish with reduced omega 3 and 6 content.

Dried Yeast is assumed to be "Brewers Dried Yeast", a by-product of the beer making process, this ingredient contains about 45% protein and is rich in Vitamin B. Its use in fish foods is as either as a protein source or a vitamin supplement. Studies do exist identifying its capacity to improve fish growth rates. When used as a supplement comprising between 2% and 4% of the food, this is an acceptable product. When used as a primary provider of protein comprising 25% or more of the food it is less acceptable as protein digestibility concerns have been documented. Its use in this food does not appear excessive.

The remaining preferred protein source of Algae Meal is listed too far down in the ingredient list to be considered as significant contributions to the overall protein or nutrient content.

The "TetraColor" labeling and marketing of this product as a color enhancing food appears to be more marketing than reality. No significant color enhancing ingredients are noted in sufficient quantity to produce color enhancing results.

When discussing artificial coloring agents, it is necessary to understand the difference between a “dye” and a “lake”. The basic difference is that dyes are water soluble and lakes are not. This food uses “Red 3 Dye”, which is water soluble. Use of “Dyes” as coloring agents can have the unintended side effect of discoloring your water. This is a result of “Red 3 Dye” dissolving from uneaten food or dye that passes through the fish’s digestion. Red 3 Dye has been labeled as a carcinogen and is linked to behavioral problems in children. In fish, this potentially would manifest itself as aggression and/or hyperactivity, although no studies have been conducted in this area.

This food contains each of the three least desired ingredients in fish food, ethoxyquin, “artificial colors”, and Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (synthetic vitamin K.)

Oscarfish.Com Rating: 1 Star

The existence of Ethoxyquin, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite, and artifical colors, in addition to the low preferred protein contents of the food, as well as the questionable quality of the fish and shrimp meals in use, prevents a rating any higher.

Understanding Oscarfish.Com Ratings:

This review is an attempt to analyze the ingredients, rating them from 1 (worst) to 6 (best) in an effort to judge quality based upon three simple criteria.

  1. Absence of toxic, potentially toxic, and controversial ingredients
  2. Aquatic Animal protein and Preferred Plant Proteins as the primary protein sources
  3. A fully nutritious food to include necessary vitamins and minerals with natural sources of vitamins and minerals being preferred.

These basic concepts apply:

  • Any food that utilizes Ethoxyquin, BHA, or BHT as preservatives, cannot rate higher than a 4 star food.
  • Use of artificial colors prevents rating higher than a 4 star food.
  • Any food that utilizes Menadione Sodium Bisulfite (Synthetic Vitamin K, aka K3) cannot rate higher than a 5 star food.
  • Inclusion of the “Whole Fish”, or “Whole Krill” (in meal form or not) is preferred over fish meal or krill meal.
  • In order to achieve a 5 or 6 star rating, the quality of the meal must be known.
  • In order to achieve a 6 star rating, the “Whole Fish’ (or whole animal) must be used, either in meal form or in sufficient quantities outside of meal form.
  • Inclusion of sufficient quantities of preferred plant proteins is a bonus with sufficient Spirulina content being a significant bonus.
  • Use of prebiotics or probiotics is a bonus