According to a report published today in the Truth About Pet Food, in a March 2016 meeting with the FDA, that agency openly stated they will continue to allow pet food to violate federal law. “We’re going to allow animals that have died other than by slaughter that are further processed; we will allow those ingredients in pet food.” This disturbing report was published by Ms. Susan Thixton, who currently holds advisory positions on two pet food-related committees charged with developing pet food regulations for the AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) – the Pet Food Committee and the Ingredient Definitions Committee.
If you are feeding your pet a processed canned or kibble product that contains any of the following ingredients – chicken by-products, chicken by-product meal, turkey by-products, turkey by-product meal, meat meal, beef meal, lamb meal, venison meal, meat and bone meal, animal fat and animal digest, according to Dr. Judy Morgan from Naturally Healthy Pets, be aware they may also contain “diseased animal material, non-slaughtered dead animal material, euthanized animal material, and/or decomposing animal material.
According to the FDA‘s website, “there is no requirement that pet food products have pre-market approval by their organization. However, FDA ensures that the ingredients used in pet food are safe and have an appropriate function in the pet food. Many ingredients such as meat, poultry and grains are considered safe and do not require pre-market approval.” This means that, although the FDA is telling you, the consumer, that the product is safe for your pet to consume, in reality, there is NO actual inspection performed on many of the ingredients that you’re currently feeding Fido or Fluffy.
What does this mean for you, the consumer? Read the labels on any store-bought food you’re putting in your pet’s dishes. Understand that the ingredient lists must be declared in the proper order of predominance by weight. If you’re buying a “beef” or “tuna” product, then those should be the first ingredients listed. For example, according to the AAFCO, if the first ingredient is ‘meat and bone meal’, the rendered product ‘comes from mammal tissues, including bone, exclusive of any added blood, hair, hoof, horn, hide trimmings, manure, stomach and rumen contents except in such amounts as may occur unavoidably in good processing practices.’ This extends to all meat/chicken/fish products down the line.
The FDA has provided the video above for consumers to learn what to do in case you want to report a problem with your animal’s food. Though the FDA’s Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act does require that pet foods, like human foods, be “safe to eat, produced under sanitary conditions, contain no harmful substances, and be truthfully labeled”, if the items in it are already pre-approved, you may be rolling the dice with your pet’s health.
There are a number of free websites this Examiner recommends you consider enrolling in, including The DogFood Advisor, whose link is here, or the Truth About Pet Food, on this link, that will keep you informed about the latest food and treat recalls for your pets, along with giving great recommendations of healthier edible choices. Neither site are paid by the food companies for ratings, so it’s a great free way to keep your furries healthy and happy.