What is GAPFA?
The Global Alliance of Pet Food Associations (GAPFA)
The Global Alliance of Pet Food Associations (GAPFA) is a non-profit association, established in Belgium in 2014, representing 13 national and regional pet food industry associations and 3 companies of pet food manufacturers across the globe. GAPFA has its office in Brussels, Belgium.
Promote adherence to food safety and nutritional standards
The Alliance works to promote adherence to food safety and nutritional standards enabling manufacturers to deliver wholesome, healthy and nutritious prepared pet foods; promote the feeding of prepared pet food to support the health and wellbeing of pets; and develop and disseminate educational resources which highlight and enhance the benefits of human pet interaction.
GAPFA’s mission is to support the health and wellbeing of dogs and cats and to promote the benefits of living with them, by providing a forum to address industry consensus on key issues of mutual interest.
The Executive Committee meets on a regular basis and is representative of different GAPFA regions. The President, two Vice-Presidents, the Treasurer and the Secretary are part of the Executive Committee together with other officers nominated by their association or company, which remain responsible for the Alliance’s Executive Committee commitment.
On a daily basis, GAPFA’s work is organised around workstreams on food safety and trade facilitation, nutrition and communications.
The Food Safety and Trade Facilitation Workstream focuses on product safety and works towards a consensus on how industry can address the barriers to the international trade of pet food products. The voluntary GAPFA Safety Guidance serves as a general self-regulation framework for pet food manufacturers to produce safe pet food and to provide guidance for safety criteria facilitating international trade.
The Nutrition Workstream focuses on guidelines to industry and governments for producing nutritionally balanced pet food for maintaining the health of cats and dogs.The Communications Workstream focuses on communication and education of external stakeholders regarding the global pet food industry, pet food safety, dog and cat nutrition and responsible pet ownership. It also seeks to explain in simple terms the science and regulatory framework underpinning development of pet food product recipes and the production of safe and high-quality pet food.
In addition to the workstreams and the Executive Committee, the GAPFA General Assembly meets face to face once a year and deliberates on all matters of common interest as far as possible to reach a common position.
GAPFA members recognize that collaboration and shared knowledge can benefit pet food makers, pet lovers and, of course, the dogs and cats we feed. GAPFA’s members share information on product safety, nutrition and trade, all with the goal of providing consumer choice that allows pet lovers to select the most appropriate food for their cat’s or dog’s nutritional needs.
Cooperation with external stakeholders
In 2017 GAPFA has established a Memorandum of Understanding with the OIE, the World Organisation for Animal Health. Currently GAPFA continues its engagement with the OIE on activities of mutual interest, including the field of international standards and recommendations relevant to pet food.