Julia Ogden

Written by Julia Ogden

Laura Ward

Reviewed by Laura Ward

Updated: January 18, 2024

Fancy Feast Gems Review

Updated: January 18, 2024

Our Verdict

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Recommended

Fancy Feast Gems cat food receives the Cat Food Advisor rating, 4 stars

This range of wet food, owned by Purina, is high in protein, rich in fat and moisture, and has added vitamins and minerals to make a good diet option for cats.

Pros
  • High in animal protein
  • Rich in fat and moisture
Cons
  • Contains several controversial ingredients
  • Limited range

Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile: Growth (kitten), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

Product line Rating AAFCO
Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Pate with Beef and a Halo of Savory Gravy 4 M
Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Paté With Chicken and a Halo of Savory Gravy 4 M
Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Paté With Salmon and a Halo of Savory Gravy 4 M
Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Paté With Tuna and a Halo of Savory Gravy 4 M

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Recipe and Label Analysis

Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Paté with Chicken and a Halo of Savory Gravy Wet Cat Food was selected to represent the other products in the line for a detailed recipe and nutrient analysis.

Label and nutrient data below are calculated using dry matter basis.

Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Paté With Chicken and a Halo of Savory Gravy

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

47.1%

Protein

17.6%

Fat

27.3%

CarbsCarbohydrates

Chicken broth, chicken, liver, meat by-product, tapioca starch-modified, glycine, sodium tripolyphosphate, natural flavors, minerals [potassium chloride, magnesium sulfate, zinc sulfate, iron sulfate, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, calcium iodate], locust bean gum, guar gum, caramel color, carrageenan, taurine, methyl cellulose, l-ascorbic acid, vitamins [vitamin e supplement,niacin (vitamin B-3), thiamine mononitrate (vitamin B-1), calcium pantothenate (vitamin B-5), riboflavin supplement (vitamin B-2), pyroxidine hydrochloride (vitamin B-6), folic acid (vitamin B-9), vitamin a supplement, menadione sodium bisulfite complex (vitamin K), biotin (vitamin B-7), vitamin B-12 supplement, vitamin D-3 supplement], choline chloride.


Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 1.5%

Red denotes any controversial items

Ingredients Analysis

The first ingredient is chicken broth.  Broths are of only modest nutritional value.  Yet because they add both flavor and moisture to a cat food, they are a common component in many wet products.

The second ingredient is chicken. Chicken is considered “the clean combination of flesh and skin derived from the parts or whole carcasses of chicken”.  1

It is naturally rich in the 11 essential amino acids required by a cat to sustain life.

The third ingredient is liverNormally, liver can be considered a quality component.  However, in this case, the source of the liver is not identified.  For this reason, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this item.

The fourth ingredient is meat by-product, an item made from slaughterhouse waste.  This is what’s left of slaughtered animals after all the prime striated muscle cuts have been removed.

With the exception of hair, horns, teeth and hooves, this item can include almost any other part of the animal. 2

What’s worse, this particular item is anonymous, so the meat itself can come from any combination of cattle, pigs, sheep or goats which can make identifying specific food allergies impossible. Although most meat by-products can be nutritious, we do not consider such vaguely described (generic) ingredients to be as high in quality as those derived from a named animal source.

The fifth ingredient is tapioca starch-modified, a gluten-free, starchy carbohydrate extract made from the root of the cassava plant.

The sixth ingredient is glycine. Glycine is an amino acid. This is usually included to improve protein quality of the food. Glycine is seen as a positive addition to this food.

The seventh ingredient is sodium tripolyphosphate, which is a supplemental source of both sodium and phosphorus. Sodium and phosphorus are each considered essential minerals.

The eighth ingredient is natural flavors. Natural flavors doesn’t give us much information about the particular ingredients included in this cat food for flavoring purposes.

We’re pleased that the flavorings used are natural, but more details are required to give any further information about these natural flavoring ingredients. Flavorings are used to make the foods more appealing and tasty for our cats.

From here the list goes on to include a number of other items. But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of the product.

However this recipe contains carrageenan which is a gelatin-like thickening agent extracted from seaweed. Although carrageenan has been used as a food additive for hundreds of years, there appears to be some recent controversy regarding its long term biological safety.

The article, The Carrageenan Controversy, published in Scientific American, does a good job of addressing this topic.

Recipe star rating 4

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Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, the Fancy Feast Gems Mousse Paté With Chicken and a Halo of Savory Gravy recipe looks like an above-average wet product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 47.1%, a fat level of 17.6% and an estimated carbohydrate level of 27.3%.

As a group, the brand features an above-average protein content of 47.1% and an above-average fat level of 17.6%. Together these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 27.3% for the overall product line, alongside a fat to protein ratio of 38%.

This means the Fancy Feast Gems cat food range contains higher than average protein, near-average carbohydrate and higher than average fat, when compared to typical wet cat food.

Final Word

This range of food is a mousse pate with gravy.  It is made for adult cats and offers high protein content derived from animal protein.  This range of recipes is also grain free.  It is rich in fat and moisture and has added vitamins and minerals, making this a good diet option to consider.

Has Fancy Feast cat food been recalled in the past?

No, Fancy Feast cat food has never been recalled, but other Purina brands have been recalled multiple times.

The last one was in July 2021 when cans of Purina Pro Plan Complete Essentials Tuna Entree in Sauce Wet Cat Food were recalled as they may have contained plastic. Full details here

In March 2019, Purina issued a recall of one of its Muse cat foods.

In 2012, a single lot of Purina Veterinary Diets OM Overweight Management Feline Formula was recalled due to low levels of thiamine. Production Code #11721159.

In June 2011, Friskies issued a small recall due to the potential risk of salmonella contamination. This recall only affected a small range of Friskies products, – the Friskies Grillers Blend dry cat food recipe in 3.15lb and 16 lb bags with best-by dates of August 2012.In the same year, some other Purina dry cat foods were recalled due to suspected salmonella contamination. The products affected were: Purina ONE Vibrant Maturity 7+ dry cat food, 3.5 lb. and 7 lb. bags, with a “Best by” date of May 2012 and Production Code #03341084 or #03351084 and Purina Cat Chow Naturals, 6.3 lb., Production Code #10331083 13, with “Best by” date of August 2012.

You can view a complete list of all cat food recalls since 2021 here.

To stay on top of any cat food product recalls, sign up for our free email alerts, here.

About

Fancy Feast was created in 1982 and was one of the first cat food brand to capitalize on the gourmet concept, although it is now one of the cheaper brands on the market.

The brand is owned by Nestlé Purina PetCare, an American subsidiary of the Swiss corporation Nestlé, based in St. Louis, Missouri. It produces and markets pet food, treats, cat and dog litter. 

The cat food brands owned by Purina are: Beyond, Breeze, DenaLife, Fancy Feast, Friskies, Kit & Kaboodle, Petivity, Purina Cat Chow, Purina ONE, Purina Pro Plan, Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets, Tidy Cats and Whisker Lickin’s.

Sources

1: 1. Association of American Feed Control Officials

2: 1. Association of American Feed Control Officials

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