If it tests positive for Salmonella in duck, it’s Salmonella in duck: UK’s Natural Instinct recalls several products

The Food Standards Agency says Natural Instinct Ltd is recalling several dog food products containing duck because salmonella has been found in the products.

Product details

Working Dog Duck

Pack size   1kg and 2x500g

Use by       08 January 2022 15 January 2022 22 January 2022 13 February 2022 20 February 2022 11 March 2022 18 March 2022

Pure Duck

Pack size   1kg and 2x500g

Use by       08 January 2022 15 January 2022 22 January 2022 13 February 2022 20 February 2022 11 March 2022 18 March 2022

Working Dog Puppy

Pack size   1kg and 2x500g

Use by       15 January 2022 22 January 2022 13 February 2022 20 February 2022 11 March 2022

Duck Carcass

Pack size   Pack of 2

Use by       08 January 2022 15 January 2022 20 February 2022

Duck Necks

Pack size   Pack of 6

Use by       15 January 2022 22 January 2022

Risk statement

The presence of Salmonella in the products listed above.

In humans, symptoms caused by salmonella usually include fever, diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Infected animals may not necessarily display signs of illness, but symptoms can include diarrhoea.

Action taken by the company

Natural Instinct is recalling the above products. Point of sale notices will be displayed in all retail stores that are selling these products. These notices explain to customers why the products are being recalled and tell them what to do if they have bought the product.

Natural Instinct recall notice(Opens in a new window)

Our advice to consumers

(Pet owners) If you have bought any of the above products do not use them. Instead, return them to the store from where they were bought for a full refund. When handling and serving raw pet food it is always advised to clean utensils and feeding bowls thoroughly after use. Consumers should wash hands thoroughly after handling raw pet food, bowls, utensils or after contact with the faeces of animals. Raw pet food should be stored separately from any food (especially ready to eat foods). Care should be taken when defrosting to avoid cross contamination of foods and surfaces.

Undiagnosed deaths, dog, Australia: Voluntary meat diet dog food recall

ProMed mail reports in some of the drier parts of inland Australia (quite removed by distance from Bairnesdale in Victoria), there is a wild legume (_Indigofera_ spp.) containing the toxin indospicine. This plant tends to be more abundant during the wetter seasons in the desert country and/or is a more preferred food of some herbivores at these times.

This toxin can accumulate in the offal and musculature of monogastric
herbivores (e.g., horses). If said meat from such animals finds its
way into pet food and forms a substantial proportion of the pets’ diet, it causes a non-responsive acute hepatitis.

Indospicine in the diet of equines also causes chronic liver disease and a hepatic encephalopathy condition commonly referred to as “walk-about” disease (not to be confused with the condition of similar cause arising from consumption of hepatotoxic _Crotolaria_ spp. By horses in the wetter tropics and sub-tropics). Affected horses compulsively pace or walk, initially causing dumping of the toes of the hooves (especially rear) and progressive loss of coordination with
progression to head pressing and, ultimately, death. Feral horses (of which there are sizeable numbers scattered over the drier inland areas of Australia) and domesticated horses showing early signs of walk-about disease are more likely to find their way to knackeries.

This condition was researched and established in Alice Springs by Dept of Primary Industries and Fisheries and a local private veterinary clinic (in collaboration with CSIRO, Long Pocket Research Station in Brisbane, Qld.) in the early-mid 1980s after a run of very good seasons in the central Australian deserts, and seasonal occurrence of acute, non-responsive, fatal hepatitis affecting pet dogs.

Be careful: Pet food – raw, frozen, processed – can be contaminated

My new best friend – Ted, the dog – came from a breeder in Toowoomba, about 90 minutes away, atop Australia’s Great Dividing Ridge.

ted-grass-nov-16He weighs less than our cats, but is feisty and loves a walk.

Or a run.

The breeder (we went to the local shelters, but they had dogs that were not deemed appropriate by our townhouse body corporate) so we got the little one rather than make a rush decision to buy an $800K house so we could have a bigger dog.

Besides, this one’s got personality.

The breeder insisted that dogs do better on a raw meat diet.

I just wanted to get the dog, go visit our friends, and go home, so didn’t belabor the point.

But any raw product carries the same risk of Salmonella and E. coli and other things that are not fun to inflict on your dog.

Natures Menu is recalling its ‘Country Hunter 80% Farm Reared Turkey with Wholesome Fruit and Veg’ frozen pet food, because the product contains Salmonella.

The UK Food Standards Agency is issuing this product recall notice because we are responsible for animal feed regulations and their enforcement through local authorities.sorenne-ted

Fancy dog food ain’t safe dog food: A ‘spoonful’ for Serena Williams edition

Serena Williams tried her 3-year-old dog’s hotel dog food and got one whopper of a stomach ache afterward, according to a Snapchat video.

“That looks better than my food,” reasoned Williams in a video, now available on YouTube, in which she explains why she decided to have a bite of her dog’s gourmet meal. “I’m like, what the heck, I’m gonna try a piece. It looks good.”

Williams, who uploaded the video to Snapchat to avoid “hating,” knew exactly what people might think about her taste test: “Don’t judge me, I ate a spoonful.”

Turns out, this was definitely no delicious spoonful. Two hours later, she said, “I just ran to the toilet like, like I thought I was going to pass out.”

The “force-swallowed” bite tasted “a little bit like house cleaner,” she said, adding with a laugh, “Chip liked it and it looked good … I don’t think it’s consumable for humans.”

The star sighed at the end of the video, and said, “So now I feel really sick.”

Williams managed to qualify for the Italian Open hours later (and won yesterday.

Walking the walk

Ashley Chaifetz, a PhD student studying public policy at UNC-Chapel Hill writes:

A company should be able to survive and improve in the wake of a major food recall; it’s an opportunity to reevaluate and strengthen what’s great about an operation and fix what has gone impossibly wrong.2014-03-10 17.23.50

In 2013, my dog Chloe’s (right, exactly as shown) food was recalled due to Salmonella contamination. After some struggles with refunds, we haven’t returned to feeding her any of the Natura brands foods. After trying multiple brands, we landed on the Diamond Naturals Grain Free Chicken kibble and she’s been consuming it for more than a year already. I am a fan of its ingredient list (lots of fats and proteins) and nutritional content (probiotics, omega-6 and 3, complex carbs, antioxidants), as well as its price point; Chloe seems to find it delicious.

Diamond Pet Foods had a 2012 recall due to Salmonella that resulted in 49 cases of foodborne illness in humans in 20 states due to contamination at a single production facility, discovered via a routine check. Two years later, Costco (a distributor of the Kirkland product, also recalled) settled claims for over $2M initiated by the death of Barbara Marciano’s dog, which ate the contaminated food purchased from Costco. The contaminated food had not yet been recalled. Part of the settlement included “new and improved quality control procedures and therapeutic reforms that had not been implemented prior to the recalls.”

During the investigation, the FDA observed the following: 1) All reasonable precautions are not taken to ensure that production procedures do not contribute contamination from any source. 2) Failure to provide handwashing and hand sanitizing facilities at each location in the plant where needed. 3) Failure to maintain equipment, containers and utensils used to convey, hold, and store food in a manner that protects against contamination. 4) Failure to maintain equipment so as to facilitate cleaning of the equipment.

Now, the Diamond website depicts its commitment to food safety and mentions: on-site product testing, mycotoxin control, microbial testing, water quality, air quality, and its test-and-hold program. To the average consumer (including myself), its difficult to decipher what this means and how it is different from the pre-recall era.

I called Diamond for an explanation.

The customer service person answered all my food safety questions without stumbling. She explained since the 2012 recall, they’ve made a lot of changes. Some of her descriptions remained a bit vague; others came with more detail. She said all ingredients are tested (a series of tests, she explained) and then multiple times as they are manufactured. There are on-site labs at each facility—one of the biggest changes since the recall. For each batch of food, they retain samples to test for Salmonella. Each batch must be tested and held before it is released; if it comes up as Salmonella-positive, they will not distribute it. She explained that they used to send samples out for testing, but not hold the product – so the dog food could be consumed by the time Salmonella was detected.

Additionally, there are new safety protocols in each of the plants; incoming products are segregated from final product, not just within a space, but also by room through the use of walls and dividers. The result, she told me, is less cross-contamination. I also asked about how manufacturing might have changed, if there were any major changes in how the food was processed and she said no.

It’s hard to know what any manufacturer is doing to reduce risk of contamination, it’s all about trust; I appreciate that Diamond answered the call and my questions. It’s important to me to believe that a company can learn from bad experiences and improve its operations in the face of a recall, rather than attempt to cheat the system or disagree with the recommendations. But I also pay close attention to pet product recalls (there are so many!); if there’s another recall like the one in 2012, there’s a good chance Chloe will get to try another brand.

Looking for risk reduction info and finding little

Ashley Chaifetz, a PhD student studying public policy at UNC-Chapel Hill writes,

After last year’s extended recall of my dog’s food, I switched brands. The recalls kept piling up and I did not want to put Chloe, my dog, at an increased risk as I repeatedly switched out bags of food.IMG_5238-225x300

Our pet food store gave me all sorts of samples for her to try before I committed to a new 30-lb bag. This time, I decided look up all the brands I had samples for in the FDA recall database. I initially considered ruling out companies with a history of recalls because repeated problems demonstrates a company that can’t get it right.

But what to do about businesses that may have had one health-related recall? Or none?

What I want to know is what a company does, or has done in response to an event, to improve their systems to reduce the risk of dogfoodborne illness.

It’s really hard to find information from dog food producers about what they do to keep Chloe’s potential food safe. It’s time for producers to step it up.

Providing consumers with risk reduction plans and systems, whether a company has had a contamination event or not, should be the industry standard but only a few companies provide this information.

That gluten-free bar is for dogs, not humans

The whole gluten-free thing has jumped the shark, if it already hadn’t two years ago.

According to the New York Times, about 15,000 plastic-wrapped copies of The Hollywood Reporter arrived on desks in Los Angeles. Inside these special copies of the publication, which has a subscriber base of about dogsbar70,000, was a “gluten free” nutrition bar — seemingly no big deal, just another of the magazine’s advertiser-related giveaways.

The president of one television studio chomped into it, as did one of his subordinates. A senior publicist at PMK-BNC tossed the bar into a drawer and started eating it a week later for a snack. This reporter did the same thing.

It was dog food.

“Yes, we heard people ate the dog bar thinking it was for humans,” said a clucking Lynne Segall, The Reporter’s publisher. “On the plus side, it was gluten-free.”

The “stunt,” as Ms. Segall called the giveaway, was part of a $45,000 ad purchase by Dog for Dog, a pet food company backed by the comedian Chelsea Handler; the rapper Snoop Dogg, who now prefers to be known sadie.dog.powellas Snoop Lion; and Ryan Kavanaugh, the chief of Relativity Media. For every item bought, Dog for Dog says it donates an item to a needy canine.

The TV executives (right, not exactly as shown) and power publicist who privately acknowledged chowing down on the blueberry-flavored Dogsbars said they only glanced at the wrapper before taking a bite. (They refused to speak on the record, for the obvious reason.) Only when something didn’t taste quite right did they read the smaller print:

“All Natural. Gluten Free. Snack for Dogs.”

Poop Doggy Dog Part II

Ashley Chaifetz, a PhD student studying public policy at UNC-Chapel Hill writes,

Two weeks ago, my dog’s food was recalled. After inquiring via the Natura consumer relations line, I was sent a voucher as compensation for the 30-lb. bag my dog Chloe had already consumed. So I got another one.IMG_5238

I recently read that Natura had expanded the recall of its products. From the website:

Out of an abundance of caution, we are extending our recall to include all Natura dry dog, cat and ferret food and treats that have expiration dates on or before March 24, 2014. We are sorry for the disruption, but we simply want to ensure that every product meets our highest quality standards.

I checked my new bag and it’s dated March 14, 2014 (and included in the expanded recall). I called Natura and the operator explained to me that Natura wanted a clean break and that they decided to be extra cautious in recalling the food. They want to know that 100% of what is on store shelves is safe. I didn’t get any details about what had changed for Natura, except that by expanding the recall, they would have more faith in the products left in the stores. They just weren’t sure about the products with expiration dates on or before March 24, 2014 and felt it was better to be judicious.

 I’ve decided to not use this product anymore; I am uncertain of their current ability to produce the safest product possible. I didn’t want a voucher (even though Chloe loves their food). Natura’s customer service understood, even agreeing to send me a refund for the bag I tossed in the trash.

 Chloe deserves to eat food that isn’t at increased risk of making her sick. I’m not confident that Natura is really addressing risks, as I still don’t have answers about the reasoning behind the expanded recall.

The company does its own internal testing. Make it public. Prove to consumers your product is safe. And if you have the data, market it at retail, cause I want food that won’t give my dog diarrhea or make my dog barf.

Ashley Chaifetz studies how the government influences what we eat (and keeps it safe), consumes too many carrots, and survived Campylobacter in 2011.

Toddlers head for the dog dish; 49 now sick from Salmonella in dog food

A total of 49 individuals (47 individuals in 20 states and two individuals in Canada) have, according to the latest update from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, been infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Infantis linked to dry dog food, up from 22 a month ago.

Among the 24 patients with available information, 10 (42%) were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Epidemiologic and laboratory investigations conducted by officials in local, state, and federal public health, agriculture, and regulatory agencies linked this outbreak to dry dog food produced by Diamond Pet Foods at a single production facility in Gaston, South Carolina.

The complete report is available at http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/dog-food-05-12/index.html.

22 now sick from Salmonella in dog food

A total of 22 individuals have, according to the latest update from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, been infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Infantis. Twenty ill persons have been reported from 13 states and two ill persons have been reported from Canada.

Among the 17 patients with available information, 6 (35%) were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported. Among persons for whom information is available, illnesses began between October 2011 and May 11, 2012. Ill persons range in age from less than one year old to 82 years old and the median age is 46.5 years. Sixty-eight percent of patients are female. Among the 17 patients with available information, 6 (35%) were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Multiple brands of dry dog food produced by Diamond Pet Foods at a single manufacturing facility in South Carolina have been linked to some of the human Salmonella infections.

Consumers should check their homes for recalled pet food products and discard them promptly. People who think they might have become ill after contact with dry pet food or with an animal that has eaten dry pet food should consult their health care providers.