Newman's Own makes its pet foods from human-grade, organic ingredients -- and all profits go to animal charities. Dog owners say this is a brand they can trust.
Organic meat -- no grains. Newman's Own Organics Beef & Liver closely replicates a dog's ancestral diet, DogFoodAdvisor.com's Mike Sagman points out that it's mostly USDA organic, free-range beef and liver, with zero grains. Minerals are proteinated, which means they have been processed in a way that makes them easier for a dog to absorb. These foods meet Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) standards as a complete, balanced diet for dogs. It's not perfect, though. It contains carrageenan (a controversial seaweed-based thickener linked to intestinal inflammation) and sodium selenite (a less safe selenium supplement than selenium yeast, PetsumerReport.com's Susan Thixton explains).
Recall-free. Several dog owners say they switched to Newman's Own during the melamine tragedy of 2007, in which tainted ingredients from China were used in U.S. pet foods, sickening and killing hundreds of pets. Widespread recalls ensued -- but Newman's Own wasn't affected. In fact, Newman's Own pet foods are recall-free, a search of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's website shows. Newman's Own Organics Beef & Liver is 95 percent organic and, as a result, carries the U.S. Department of Agriculture organic seal. That can give some comfort to dog owners concerned about artificial ingredients, artificial preservatives, pesticides and other questionable ingredients. The beef is sourced from Uruguay, a country with strict regulations prohibiting the use of growth hormones and antibiotics. Newman's Own Organics uses no genetically modified (GMO) ingredients.
However, the dog food cans are not bisphenol A (BPA)-free, one top source points out. BPA is a chemical that studies have linked to reproductive problems, cancers and other diseases, but levels used in most pet food cans are low enough that they meet current FDA standards for safety. Newman's Own is not alone in this; our research failed to turn up any dog food in larger size cans (more than 6 ounces) that did not have BPA.
All profits go to animal charities. Even though it's organic -- and grain-free -- Newman's Own Beef & Liver actually costs significantly less than some "super-premium" foods that are neither, like Halo Spot's Stew Succulent Salmon Recipe (Est. $3.35 for a 13.2-oz. can). If you want to avoid carrageenan, though, experts recommend Fromm Family Gold Salmon and Chicken Pate (Est. $2.75 for a 13-oz. can). Fromm Gold is meat-rich, grain-free and recall-free, like Newman's Own, but it's not organic.
Susan Thixton investigates many brands and individual flavors of dog food, including several varieties of Newman's Own canned (although not the Beef & Liver). She points out which ingredients are good and which are bad, rating each brand and flavor accordingly.
Review: Newman's Own Dog Food, Susan Thixton, Not Dated
Newman's Own Organics Beef & Liver dog food earns the highest rating here (5 stars) and an enthusiastic recommendation. Mike Sagman says it -- and all Newman's Own canned dog food -- has protein, fat and carbohydrate ratios that approach those of a dog's "natural ancestral diet."
Review: Newman's Own Organics Grain Free (Canned), Mike Sagman, Updated Mar. 21, 2014
Newman's Own Organics makes this list of the best canned dog foods. Though discussion is nearly nonexistent, Mary Straus makes special note of the company's grain-free varieties, including Newman's Own Organics Beef & Liver.
Review: Canned Dog Foods and Refrigerated or Frozen Cooked Foods, Mary Straus, Updated Mar. 4, 2015
Amazon.com hosts more than 135 reviews for Newman's Own Organics canned dog food, including Organic Beef & Liver. Overall, satisfaction is high. However, some owners say their dogs couldn't tolerate the food, or that they got a bad batch from Amazon. Comments reflect all grain-free Newman's Own Organics canned dog food varieties.
Review: Newman's Own Beef and Liver Grain-Free for Dogs, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of April 2015
We found nearly 30 additional user reviews of Newman's Own Organics Organic Beef & Liver at Chewy.com, where it earns a 4.6-star rating. Most (86 percent) say they would recommend the dog food, though some have reservations over the source of the beef, the food's smell, or that it's too rich for their pet.
Review: Newman's Own Organics Grain-Free Beef & Liver Canned Dog Food, 12-oz, case of 12, Contributors to Chewy.com, As of April 2015