|Crude Protein||44.0% min.|
|Crude Fat||8.0% min.|
|Crude Fiber||2.0% max.|
Hikari Micro Wafers Ingredients:
Fish Meal, Krill Meal, Wheat Flour, Flaked Corn, Brewer's Dried Yeast, Cuttlefish Meal, Wheat Germ Meal, Gluten Meal, Spirulina, Fish Oil, Dried Seaweed Meal, Clam Extract, Lecithin, Hydrolyzed Vegetable Sucrose Polyesters, Enzymes, Garlic, Astaxanthin, Monosodium Glutamate, DL-methionine, Vitamin A Oil, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (source of Vitamin K), Choline Chloride, L-Ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate (stabilized Vitamin C), Inositol, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Niacin, Folic Acid, Biotin, Ferrous Sulfate, Magnesium Sulfate, Zinc Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Cobalt Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Aluminum Hydroxide, Sodium Acid Pyrophosphate.
Hikari Micro Wafers Ingredients Analysis
The primary ingredient is Fish meal. Being a Hikari produced fish meal; we can have confidence in the nutrient and protein levels of the meal. However, not being labeled as “Whole Fish Meal” identifies that the meal is potentially compiled from leftovers after the more desirable components of the fish are used for human consumption (pending clarification from Hikari).
The 2nd listed ingre dient is another preferred protein source, krill meal, an excellent source of proteins, amino acids, omega 3 oils, and color enhancing carotenoids. With two preferred protein sources as the first two listed ingredients, there is a good probability that preferred protein sources comprise a majority of this food.
Due to digestibility concerns, we would prefer not to see use of corn products listed this high in the ingredient list.
Brewers Dried Yeast is a by-product of the beer making process; this ingredient contains about 45% protein and is rich in Vitamin B. Is use in fish foods is as either as a protein source or a vitamin supplement. Studies do exist indentifying 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.
Spirulina is sometimes called "The Most Nutritious Food on the Planet". Rich in raw protein and seven major vitamins: A1, B1, B2, B6, B12 (one of the best natural sources for B12, although the bioavailability of its B12 is in dispute by many researchers), C and E. It naturally contains beta-carotene, color enhancing pigments, and a whole range of minerals. In addition, Spirulina has 62% amino acid content and contains all essential fatty acids and eight amino acids required for complete nutrition. It is easily digested due to the fact that Spirulina cells do not have cellulose walls. Spirulina is only available in a dry form, so regardless of how it is listed on the ingredient label (spirulina meal, dried spirulina, or spirulina), it's ordering in the ingredient list should be accurate. Use of Spirulina is appreciated, as is use dried seaweed meal, although we would prefer both ingredients be rated higher.
Hydrolyzed Vegetable Sucrose Polyesters is an unusual ingredient for which little information is available. I can find no dog or cat foods that utilize this ingredient. Only chicken feed and fish food.
This food does not contain Ethoxyquin or artificial coloring agents. However, it likely contains Menadione Sodium Bisulfite (synthetic vitamin K) within the listing of “vitamins and minerals” (other Hikari products contain MSB).
Oscarfish.Com Rating: 3 Star
The preferred protein content and the known quality of Hikari fish meals justifies at minimum, a 3 star rating. However, use of other questionable products, excessive use of binders, fillers, and non-preferred protein sources, combined with the existence of Menadione Sodium Bisulfite (synthetic vitamin K) prevent 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.
- Absence of toxic, potentially toxic, and controversial ingredients
- Aquatic Animal protein and Preferred Plant Proteins as the primary protein sources
- 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