Natural Balance has announced that it is recalling it’s Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs due to a supplier’s recall. The affected formulas include 15oz cans of: Irish Stew, Hobo Chili, Chinese Take-Out and Southern Style Dumplin’s with Gravy. The supplier, Castleberry Foods, found one instance of botulism in improperly sealed cans of human food.
The recall information was only sent to subscribers of their newsletters. This information is not yet available on the Natural Balance website. (Update: The message has been posted on the Natural Balance site as of Sunday.)
Full recall details below:
Natural Balance was informed at 2:45 pm by our USDA manufacturer, Castleberry Foods, in Augusta, GA, that they are doing a voluntary recall on all 15 oz edible foods for humans as well as our Natural Balance Eatables for Dogs (Irish Stew, Hobo Chili, Chinese Take-Out and Southern Style Dumplin’s with Gravy).
This voluntary recall is from one reported case of botulism in Castleberry’s human edible Hot Dog Chili Sauce. Botulism is generally due to an improperly sealed can or a can that has become damaged, thus letting air inside.
Natural Balance checks all of its cans for any kind of leakage, puffiness or damage before they are shipped, and we have found none. However, to comply with our manufacturer, we are asking that you discontinue use and return Eatables for Dogs to your store for a full refund. We will give you more information as we get it.
Update: The FDA also just announced the recall expansion.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 21, 2007
FDA Expands Its Warning about the Risk of Botulism Poisoning From Certain Castleberry Food Products and Dog Food
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expanding its July 18 warning to consumers. This expansion is for consumers and pet owners regarding canned food products and dog food produced by Castleberry Food Company of Augusta, Ga., due to the risk of botulinum toxin. Castleberry is expanding the recall to include all of the following canned products with all “best by” and code dates, and FDA is warning consumers not to purchase or eat any of the canned products listed in the table below.
Hot Dog Chili Sauces
Austex Onion Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Austex Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Castleberry’s Onion Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Bunker Hill Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Kroger Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Meijer Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Food Lion Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Bloom Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Thrifty Maid Hot Dog Chili Sauce
Natural Balance Eatables dog food varieties:
Irish Stew with Beef Dog Food
Chinese Take Out with Sauce with Vegetables and Chicken Dog Food
Southern Style Dumplings with Gravy with Chicken and Vegetables
Hobo Chili with Chicken Pasta Dog Food
The agency is expanding its warning based in part on FDA test results and information obtained during a joint FDA and U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection of the Castleberryâ€™s facility in Augusta, Ga.
Exposure to botulinum toxin can be fatal and two people in Texas and two people in Indiana remain seriously ill and hospitalized with botulism poisoning associated with eating Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce.
While the previous recall and the known illnesses are linked to production dates of April 30 to May 22, 2007, the firm has extended the recall to include all products listed irrespective of “best by” date. The firm is cooperating with FDA in the recall of these products and has ceased processing and distribution.
In addition, Castleberry is recalling other products containing meat, which are regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. USDA is also warning the public not to eat certain brands of Castleberry products containing meat. The list of these USDA-regulated products can be viewed at this link to the USDA website: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/News_&_Events/Recall_033_2007_Release/index.asp
Consumers who have any of these products or any foods made with these products should throw them away immediately. Double bag the cans in plastic bags that are tightly closed then place in a trash receptacle for non-recyclable trash outside of the home. Additional instructions for safe disposal can be found at www.cdc.gov/botulism/botulism_faq.htm
Retailers that have any of these products are asked to assure that they are removed from use and do not accidentally get reintroduced for sale, service or donation.
Symptoms of botulism poisoning in humans can begin from 6 hours to 2 weeks after eating food that contains the toxin. Symptoms may include double vision, blurred vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, and muscle weakness that moves progressively down the body, affecting the shoulders first then descending to the upper arms, lower arms, thighs, calves, etc. Botulism poisoning can also cause paralysis of the breathing muscles which can result in death unless assistance with breathing (mechanical ventilation) is provided. Individuals who show these symptoms and who may have recently eaten one of the Castleberryâ€™s products currently under recall should seek immediate medical attention.
The disease has only been seen occasionally in dogs and has not been reported in cats. Ferrets are highly susceptible to botulinum toxin. The incubation period can be 2 hours to 2 weeks; in most cases, the symptoms appear after 12 to 24 hours. Botulism is characterized by progressive motor paralysis. Typical clinical signs may include muscle paralysis, difficulty breathing, chewing and swallowing, visual disturbances and generalized weakness may also occur. Death usually results from paralysis of the respiratory or cardiac muscles. Pet owners who have used these products and whose pets have these symptoms should contact their veterinarian immediately. At this time we are not aware of pet illnesses associated with these products although we recommend that all these products should be discarded.
Castleberry recommends consumers with any questions or concerns about this recall should go to Castleberryâ€™s website (www.castleberrys.com) or call Castleberryâ€™s consumer hotline at 1-800-203-4412 or 1-888-203-8446.
Consumers with questions can call FDA at 1-888-SAFEFOOD.
(Thanks to many reader tips)