POISONED PET FOOD:
MORE RECALLS AND OTHER NEWS:
Still more pet foods have been recalled since Molly last blogged on this subject. American Nutrition, the makers of the Harmony Farms line of pet foods have announced a recall of all Harmony Farms canned dog and cat foods. American Nutrition manufactures the Blue Buffalo line as well as the Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul foods mentioned previously. They also make the Mulligan Stew line and some of the Kirkland, Canine Caviar, Diamond, and Natural Balance products. The list of their recalled products is online in a press release from American Nutrition. The company explains that they received contaminated rice protein concentrate from the Wilbur-Ellis import company. To her horror Molly found out that these more recent recalls have yet to show up on the comprehensive list made available by the American Veterinary Medical Association. That list was lasted update on April 27th, and it will hopefully contain the new items by tomorrow.
Meanwhile in other news Business week reports that the FDA has (finally !) executed search warrants on the Emporia Kansas plant of Menu Foods and the Los Vegas offices of ChemNutra Inc. as part of an investigation to see if they violated the Food and Drug Act. Seems a bit pokey to this cat. But speaking of pokey it seems according to a report in USA Today that China has finally come around to admitting that food ingredients exported from China contained the suspect chemical melamine even while arguing that there is no direct proof that melamine was the cause of the poisonings. On April 24th the Chinese government sealed the headquarters of Binzhou Futian Biotechnology. Chinese president Hu Jintao has issued a call for increased inspections of food in China where human food poisonings are a common occurrence. The International Herald Tribune has an expose article on the melamine industry in China online today. Turns out that melamine adulteration of animal feedstocks is a common dishonest practice in the PRP to give a falsely high protein content. The Chinese government banned the use of melamine in feedstocks only last Friday.
As to how the seemingly innocuous melamine becomes highly toxic according to an item on the Canadian Press researchers at Guelph Ontario have found that melamine and another contaminant, cyanuric acid, react with each other to form the crystals that are so damaging to the kidneys of cats and dogs. In other news an item from the Associated Press reports that Menu Foods has launched legal action against ChemNutra, the importers of the contaminated wheat gluten that began this whole affair. The lawsuits will probably be flying thick in the future as all the various parties try to shift both blame and financial responsibility.
That's it for now. No doubt more tomorrow.