Many are aware that about six years ago there was a scandal because a pet food supplier from china had used melamine as an ingredient (because the presence of melamine causes tests for protein levels to be higher...and I presume melamine is cheaper than protein) and this had caused death for a number of pets. Melamine has also been used to boost apparent protein level in foods designed to be used by human animals. "Melamine is a by-product of the coal industry. It is a chemical compound with numerous industrial uses, including the production of plastics, dishware, kitchenware, commercial filters, laminates, adhesives, molding compounds, coatings and flame retardants." (source)
One of the lessons to be learned here is that the desire to make a profit can result in harm to living beings.
Recently Heartland Rabbit Rescue took in two bunnies from different situations where the rabbits were returned along with some of the food they had been being fed. One of the foods came from Walmart, a brand called Small World, that is apparently manufactured for Walmart by a company called Manna Pro. The other bunny was being fed a house brand rabbit food (called Ranch Pro) that is carried by a farm supply retailer called Atwoods. The negative effects of these pitiful "diets" on these two remains to be fully seen.
The link to the Small World brand food goes to a page that lists the ingredients, they include (in order of how much there is of each)....dehydrated Alfalfa Meal, Wheat Middlings, Roughage Products, Soybean Meal, Feeding Oatmeal (whatever that is) and the list then degenerates into a litany of chemicals and vitaminany sounding names, e.g. "sodium selenite".
The Ranch Pro brand sold by Atwoods list ingredients (in order of how much there is in the "food") as being "plant protein products, processed grain products, roughage products, dehydrated alfalfa meal...and then the list degenerates again into a listing of chemicals and vaguely nutritional sounding stuff like "copper sulfate". The Ranch Pro brand does say right under the logo that "This feed is designed to be fed to grower and breeder rabbits." In other words...it is designed to make the bunny get as big as possible as fast as possible because getting big fast increases profits that can be made from the bunny. The Small World brand touts itself as "Complete feed for rabbits".
Both of these "foods" are absolutely and totally unacceptable items to give to a rabbit...unless you care nothing about the well being of the rabbit.They will have the same effect as a poison...slow acting poison maybe...but poison nevertheless.
In contrast to "complete feed for rabbits" you might want to look at these nutrition guidelines from the Minnesota House Rabbit Society. They note: "Overfeeding of pellets can lead to obesity, heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease, chronic soft stools and bladder stones." And even on the Minnesota page, they aren't clear about the fact that alfalfa should be given to adult rabbits only in rare instances...alfalfa is not hay (grass) it is a legume...from the same plant family as peas. Here's another (and maybe better) source to consult concerning food for rabbits.They note: "Perhaps the single most important item in the rabbit diet is grass HAY, and it should be fed in unlimited quantities to both adults and baby rabbits." Notice they specify grass HAY, not alfalfa.
What's all this about food for rabbits? Well, the truth is, most human's are clueless about what rabbits should be eating (I promise I was) but most of us humans simply take Walmat's word that they are selling us a "complete feed" for rabbits and go merrily on our way of slowly poisoning the rabbit(s) in our care.
Furthermore, most of the food "manufactured" (manufactured food is a strange combination of words when you think about it) for rabbits is created to make "growers and breeders" of rabbits happy. That means the rabbit grows large quickly so they can be killed or they can start "breeding" quickly. None of this food is designed to assist the bunny to be healthy or long-lived...it is designed to satisfy the needs and wants of those who exploit rabbits for profit. The fact is, most commercial rabbit "food" is slow acting poison. Period.
I came across a couple of videos recently that do a good job of injecting humor into a topic that is really not humorous. Food for your rabbit (or for any living being) is literally a matter of life or death...and that's really not funny. Never ever ever pay heed to information coming from an exploiter ("grower", "rancher", "breeder", "exhibitor or shower") of living beings about what is beneficial for the beings they exploit. In the end, they don't know or care, they care about profit and what they can get out of those they exploit.
I'm including one of the videos here...the other on uses a clip from a movie about Hitler that I actually thought was good too...but found myself conflicted about it because it shows Hitler advocating for rabbits. And the juxtaposing of an evil being advocating for beings I care about left me dismayed and ambivalent.
Even if you don't live with another species...you have to live vegan to minimize your harming...so quit harming...if you haven't already done so.