NBC: Pet Food Contamination Raises Questions About Human Food Safety

NBC Nightly News reports on the increase in imported food and the decrease in inspectors in the US (down 25% over the last 4 years). Also, Senator Durbin (D-IL) wants to create one agency that is in charge of all food safety, instead of various organizations with seemingly byzantine layers of responsibility. FDA responds by saying they are focusing limited resources on the most likely risk. Really? Salmonella cross contamination from pet food is that high of a risk?

(Thanks paulbos)

11 Responses to “NBC: Pet Food Contamination Raises Questions About Human Food Safety”

  1. Robert F Davis says:

    When an organization is no longer effective in being able to protect the safety of the food chain…then change is required. I am glad that the Senator wants to see change happen for a positive impact for all of us - human and non-human alike.

    We need to also move further in the direction that companion animals are members of our familly and deserve legal protections as well. Some may say that non-human animals do not deserve the same legal equality - but I would argue they deserve equal consideration since our companions are living, sentient beings who have hearts, lungs, brains, eyes, ears, mouths, and kindey’s that can fail when they are poisoned - just like humans.

    Pet food companies must also be held accountable and not just for a loss of use of property fine for a pet dying or getting sick. We are talking real, emotional distress, medical bills and loss of life. When my german shepherd died in 2005 I could only get through my days by taking anti-depressants, anti-anxiety meds and at night sleeping pills. There is a real problem in our society and way of life when there is no recourse for us and companies can just say “sorry” and get a slap on the wrist. They have fed junk food to our companions for years and it is time they answer to us and the government and pay for how they have wronged those who have lost their companions or who have medical bills they are left with to pay.

  2. 5CatMom says:

    Dear FDA,

    Serious changes are needed. Here’re a few ideas to get you started:

    1. Sandi’s Law - To give pets legal status and protect their rights which we’ll help define. See above post.

    2. Labels - Must show Country of Origin, Manufacturer, Distributor

    3. Early Warning System - Prompt notification to pet owners is vital. Many lives could have been saved.

    4. Stricker Laws - Imported raw ingredients MUST be tested by SOMEONE.

    5. Standards Increased - Allowable limits for contaminants and toxins must be reduced. See Fed. Reg 1999 re: Novartis petition. This “standards creep” must stop. The food supply is too toxic.

    6. Identify Contaminents - Fumigants, pesticides, known toxins, etc.

    7. Establish Standards - For contaminent/toxin levels in raw ingredients.

    8. Establish test protocols - Who tests for what? Where?

    9. Centralized Data System - To collect and analyze pet death info. Every vet I’ve talked to knows there’s a problem with the food.

    10. Sources of information - Forget the lobby groups. Ask owners what’s going on. We know because we’re paying the vet bills.

    11. Risk Assessment - Do some. When supply lines change, risks change.

    12. Risk Management - Do some.

    13. Enforcement - Shut down plants when the system goes blooey. MENU needs some locks right now.

    14. Whatever new department you create, put a pet owner in charge.

    You get the idea.

    Jump in here, folks. Maybe someone’s FINALLY listening.

  3. 5CatMom says:

    Note to FDA:

    Just put ITCMO in charge.

  4. 5CatMom says:

    That’s ITCHMO. Sorry, my keyboard is worn out!

  5. Itchmo » Blog Archive » Recall Update: Thursday says:

    […] See all latest news, recalls, entertainment, and local info. « NBC: Pet Food Contamination Raises Questions About Human Food Safety […]

  6. interesting says:

    “13. Enforcement - Shut down plants when the system goes blooey. MENU needs some locks right now.”

    Menu to this date still has not produced a single product of cuts and gravy. So that side of manufacturing is shut down.

  7. 5CatMom says:


    Sounds like their customers, the BRANDS, are finally getting involved. Good thing, too.

    Hopefully, they’ll put the time to good use and have some QC audits.

    My email circles are handling hundreds of comments. People don’t want anything that is connected with MENU. They don’t care if the food has wheat gluten or not.

  8. Louie says:

    Is anyone near Cornell? Could you get those samples and send them to Guelph?

    Those guys seem to know which end of a mass spectrometer is up.

    We need some answers, and we want them YESTERDAY.

  9. Lynn says:

    Absolutely - send the Cornell samples to Univ of Guelph. I’m beginning to think that any US lab will be biased in their testing, designing their test protocols so that they cannot fail to produce outcomes that do not conflict with the FDA drug approval agenda or new drugs in clinical trials or about to be marketed.

  10. Debbie says:

    To LOUIE & to LYNN, very, very good point to raise! Bias for the sake of accommodating the WRONG good ‘ol boys. That’s certainly been known to be done! The Senate hearing panels were a perfect example of that.

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