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Blue Buffalo denies lying about pet food ingredients

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Premium pet food maker Blue Buffalo Co. late May 6 rejected accusations by competitor Purina that it has lied about its pet food ingredients.

“We categorically deny all of these false allegations and will aggressively defend the integrity of our brand and our products,” Blue Buffalo Chairman Bill Bishop wrote in a letter to “pet parents.”

In a lawsuit filed earlier in the day in federal court, Purina, a division of Nestle, charged that tests by an independent laboratory found poultry by-product meal and corn in several Blue Buffalo products, even though Blue Buffalo advertises that it uses no such ingredients. But Bishop insisted that Purina is wrong and that his company’s pet food is indeed free of those ingredients, which some consumers deem unhealthy.

“We will prove these and other matters in the court with good reliable evidence, and we look forward to disproving the voodoo science that Nestle Purina relied on to support their outrageous allegations,” Bishop wrote.

Bishop, who founded Blue Buffalo with his sons in 2003, said Purina is attacking his company because “pet parents have demonstrated their preference by selecting true natural foods like Blue Buffalo instead of the by-product and corn-based pet foods Nestle Purina has been selling for years. In fact, their inability to compete successfully with natural pet foods is the key motivation for this frivolous lawsuit.”

Purina spokesman Keith Schopp said the lawsuit’s next step is for Blue Buffalo to file a formal response in court by May 27.

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