Pet owners and government representatives are urging the Food and Drug Administration to take action to ensure chicken jerky treats from China are removed from US store shelves, after reports of pets being sickened or killed after consuming the dog chews.
"The FDA must not wait to issue a voluntary recall until it is able to definitively identify a causal agent," said Ohio, USA, Rep. Dennis Kucinich. "The FDA has clearly established an association between consumption of the chicken jerky and illness and death. It is simply not feasible to expect every dog owner to be aware of a modestly publicized warning from the FDA."
Ohio, USA, Sen. Sherrod Brown is also calling on the Food and Drug Administration to issue a recall and sent a letter to the commissioner, Dr. Margaret hamburg. “It’s critical that FDA also take swift action to protect consumers and pets from these tainted foods.Today, I’m calling on the FDA to step up its investigation of the importation of petfood—especially from China, where the possibility of food contamination is high,” Brown said.
The Food and Drug Administration has been investigating the chicken jerky products since 2007, but has yet to determine a cause of the illnesses linked to treat consumption.
"No specific products have been recalled or implicated because we have not detected a contaminant," said Tamara Ward, Food and Drug Administration spokeswoman. "The FDA continues to actively investigate the problem and its origin. If we find evidence of any contaminant, the FDA will take appropriate action and notify the public."
The Food and Drug Administration advises pet owners to monitor their pets and stop feeding the jerky products if pets show signs of decreased appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, and increased water consumption and/or increased urination.
By Greg Aldrich, Ph.D.
The options for plant-based proteins in pet food are expanding all the time.
By Debbie Phillips-Donaldson
Despite the pandemic and economic turmoil, pet food saw healthy sales increases in 2020, as did market leaders.