FDA Sends Warning Letter To Purina, Citing Significant Violations At F

Amy Tokic
by Amy Tokic
Nestle Purina starts 2015 off on the wrong foot – with a warning letter from the FDA

What a way to start off the year! Nestle Purina PetCare recently learned that it had violated federal regulations during the manufacture of dog and cat foods in one of its pet food plants.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s letter was released to the public last week, in regards to “significant violations” that were observed at a Purina pet food plant in Allentown, Pennsylvania during an inspection last year. One particular worry had to do with the pet food company’s low-acid dog and cat food that was possibly prepared or packed improperly.

Related: Jerky Treats Made In China Linked To Nearly 600 Pet Deaths

These alleged violations were observed during a plant inspection that took place between Sept. 15 and Oct. 1, 2014. In the warning letter, Alpo Chop House Rotisserie Chicken flavor in Gourmet Gravy, Mighty Dog Chicken & Smoked Bacon Combo, Friskies Mariner’s Catch and Friskies Mixed Grill were cited as products prepared or packed improperly.

The letter listed six “significant violations” and efforts the company is taking to correct the “objectionable conditions.” As part of the significant violations, the FDA inspectors say Nestle Purina failed to:

  • Process each low-acid canned food in conformity with an FDA-specified process.
  • Chlorinate or otherwise sanitize cooling water for the cooling canals and recirculated water supplies.
  • Establish a system for product-traffic control.
  • Provide records of all processing and production, signed or initialed by a representative of plant management who is qualified by suitable training or experience.
  • Install the mercury-in-glass thermometers in a location where they can be accurately and easily read.

It seems that Purina doesn’t think the FDA findings are all that serious. Keith Schopp, a spokesman for Nestle Purina, said Purina is confident there are no food safety issues or risks to pet health with the company’s products. If fact, he thinks this isn’t a Purina problem… it’s the FDA’s fault. Schopp said that the “FDA notice covers oversights in administrative activities and record keeping — not incidents of contamination at the plant.”

But the FDA is taking it seriously. Nestle Purina had 15 days (the letter is dated January 2, 2015) to provide adequate evidence of corrective action. If the company doesn’t correct the problem or fails to prevent the violations from happening again, Purina may get slapped with an injunction or seizure of product.

You can read the letter in its entirety on the FDA website.

Amy Tokic
Amy Tokic

Amy Tokic, Editor of PetGuide.com, is a passionate animal lover and proud pet parent of Oscar, a Shih Tzu/Chihuahua cross, and Zed, a Japanese Chin. Her love of animals began in kindergarten, when she brought her stuffed dog Snoopy into class with her every day. Now, she writes about her adventures in pet ownership and tirelessly researches products, news and health related issues she can share with other animal enthusiasts. In her free time, Amy loves perusing used book and record stores, obsessing over the latest pet products available and chasing squirrels with wild abandon (a habit attributed to spending too much time with her pooches).

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