The FDA just released testing results of Chinese imported jerky treats. Very discouraging. For five years – although the treats continue to be linked to death and serious illness of thousands of pets – the same hand full of tests were performed. Finding nothing. Phyllis Entis of efoodalert.com put it perfectly…”Come on, FDA! It’s time to pause, breathe, and start thinking outside the treat bag.”
You can’t find what you don’t look for.
Quoting Phyllis Entis recent post “Since November 18, 2011, FDA’s various District Offices have collected and analyzed a total of 48 samples of various brands and varieties of pet jerky treats in six district and regional FDA labs. That’s roughly one sample per lab per month. Twelve of the samples were tested for Salmonella; 30 were analyzed for the presence of ethylene glycol, diethylene glycol and/or propylene glycol; 12 were examined for melamine and cyanuric acid. An occasional sample was also examined for other microbial or chemical contaminants. Some samples were analyzed for multiple microbiological and chemical contaminants; others were subjected just one microbiological or chemical test.”
While the test results have been released, the FDA refuses to release the inspection report of the Chinese jerky treat manufacturing facilities. NBC News Journalist JoNel Aleccia latest article stated: “In a letter dated July 5, FDA officials denied entirely an msnbc.com public records request for results of the February inspections of treat plants, saying release would violate rules protecting trade secrets and confidential commercial information and that it could also interfere with enforcement proceedings.”
The FDA released the inspection report of the Diamond Pet Food plant – but they cannot release the inspection report of Chinese manufacturers of dog jerky treats?
Phyllis Entis stated “In my opinion, the absence of progress is due to two factors – lack of resources dedicated to researching the problem, and lack of a systematic approach to the problem.”
In 2009 the Office of Inspector General released a report on the FDA’s handling of the 2007 pet food recall. Though this report focused on recall procedure, it found the FDA to have “lax adherence” and lax “internal procedures”. Confirming Phyllis Entis opinion that a lack of a systematic approach continues to be an issue for the FDA (and I couldn’t agree more).
To discover the poison of the 2007 pet food recall, scientists had to work backwards. No one knew to test for melamine. They examined kidney tissue of dogs and cats pet food had killed, found crystals, and eventually found melamine. Why hasn’t the same been done with jerky treats?
In my opinion, the FDA has poor leadership. I’m confident there are individuals at FDA that are honestly trying to solve the mystery of pet illness and death believed to be related to consumption of jerky treats imported from China. However, without leaders – directing team members to work together, think outside the treat bag – efforts of those few caring individuals are futile.
The class action lawsuits pile up and pets continue to die or become seriously ill. Just received (and yet to be posted) as a adverse event report on TruthaboutPetFood.com…
“CHICKEN TREATS IN A BAG PURCHASED AT COSTCO IN MARINA DEL REY, CALIFORNIA. MY SHELTIE BEGAN TO BE LETHARGIC, LOST INTEREST IN EATING, LOOKED GENERALLY ILL. I TOOK HIM TO THE VET WHO RAN A NUMBER OF TESTS, ESPECIALLY FOR KIDNEY FUNCTION AND HE INIITIALLY WAS HOSPITALIZED FOR TWO DAYS WHILE BEING MEDICATED. HE HAS BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH DEGENERATIVE KIDNEY DISEASE, IS ON A SPECIAL DIET AND HAS TO BE INFUSED THREE TIMES A WEEK WITH LACTATED RINGERS SOLUTION SUBCUTANEOUSLY, PROBABLY FOREVER, JUST TO KEEP HIM ALIVE.”
There is no excuse the scientific connection to thousands of pet illness and death to Chinese imported jerky treats has not been found. There is no excuse for any importer to not have pulled the products out of precaution. There is no excuse for any retailer to not have pulled the products from store shelves out of precaution. This needs to end.