Pet Food Recall: Fish on U.S. Fish Farms Fed Melamine-Contaminated Feed

AVMA NEWSFish on U.S. Fish Farms Fed Melamine-Contaminated Feed; FDA Discovers Contaminated Food Products from China Mislabeled

SCHAUMBURG, Ill. (rushprnews) May 12, 2007— The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has determined that the contaminated wheat gluten and rice protein concentrate imported from China—associated with the deaths of at least 16 dogs and cats and the recall of hundreds of dog and cat food brands—was mislabeled and was really wheat flour contaminated with melamine and melamine-related products.

Contaminated Pet FoodDavid Acheson, M.D., assistant commissioner for food protection, Office of the Commissioner at the FDA, said that investigators believe that melamine, which is high in nitrogen, was added to the wheat flour. As a result, protein level test results on the flour were consistent with those of wheat gluten. This discovery does not change recent pet food recalls or livestock restrictions, but rather just expands the understanding of the ongoing pet food and livestock feed contamination and investigation.

The FDA also announced today that a portion of the mislabeled wheat flour was sent to a Canadian manufacturer by U.S.-based ChemNutra, Inc., and used to make a product that was then imported back into the United States and fed to fish on an undetermined number of fish farms. The FDA hasn’t yet released the identity of the fish farms or the type or number of fish involved, but has issued a hold on the fish.

In addition, the FDA made these announcements concerning the ongoing investigation:

The FDA has issued a hold on 50,000 swine at three facilities in Illinois due to concerns that the animals had consumed contaminated livestock feed.
The FDA has also released to inspection and possible slaughter 10 million previously restricted broiler chickens. Kenneth Petersen, D.V.M., M.P.H., assistant administrator for field operations, USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service, said that the chicken feed consumed by the released broilers tested negative for melamine. He went on to explain that, for birds and swine that had consumed contaminated feed, an animal exposure assessment will be conducted.
For more information, please visit the AVMA web site at www.avma.org.

The AVMA, founded in 1863, is one of the oldest and largest veterinary medical organizations in the world. More than 75,000 member veterinarians are engaged in a wide variety of professional activities. AVMA members are dedicated to advancing the science and art of veterinary medicine including its relationship to public health and agriculture. Visit the AVMA Web site at www.avma.org to learn more about veterinary medicine and animal care and to access up-to-date information on the association’s issues, policies and activities.
 
FOR MORE INFORMATION

Tom McPheron
Phone: 847-285-6781
Cell: 773-494-5419
e-mail: tmcpheron@avma.org
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