On May 30, 2012, the FDA added an addendum to its publication about its involvement in the Diamond Pet Food recalls since early April, 2012. It was revealed that the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development was the first agency to detect the presence of Salmonella infantis "from an intact package of Diamond Naturals Lamb and Rice Formula for Adult Dogs, collected during retail surveillance sampling."
Although the number of recalls has increased substantially since then, the source of the contamination to the food bags evidently has not yet been found (or not yet reported) by the FDA. Its report of May 30th in part says, "During the (April) inspection, FDA also collected environmental and ingredient samples at the facility, which so far have yielded negative results for the outbreak strain."
Toward the end of the section of the report titled "Laboratory Samples Update," the following tidbit of information was added, almost as an afterthought:
A surveillance sample of Diamond Naturals Small Breed Adult Lamb and Rice collected by the state of Ohio from the Diamond Meta, MO plant has now yielded a positive for Salmonella Liverpool (not the outbreak strain). Diamond has issued a recall for this product.Please note that this is the first mention of a second strain of Salmonella with regard to contaminated pet foods.
Recall Update May 30,2012The following pet food companies have issued recalls because of potential Salmonella contamination:
- Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover's Soul
- Country Value
- Diamond Naturals
- Premium Edge
- Taste of the Wild
- Apex (distributed only in the state of South Carolina)
- Kirkland Signature
- Kirkland Signature Nature's Domain
- Dick Van Patten's Natural Balance
- Apex Pet Foods
- Canidae, Wellpet LLC
- Solid Gold Health Products for Pets
Pets' Illness and DeathAccording to the blog article, Readers Report Their Experience With Recalled Pet Foods, 58 pets have taken sick by foods recalled by Diamond Pet Food (8 dead) Of those, 15 cats were sickened with three known deaths. I have not been able to verify the numbers in Entis's report dated July 20, 2012, as some of them are apparently from emails or comments on Entis's blog. Thus far, as of July 26, 2012, I have seen no recent reports by the FDA of the number of cats and dogs sickened.
Human Illness Most ReportedBy far, news reports have been more concerned with humans who have sickened because of Salmonella infantis. *As of July 19, 2012, there have been reports of 49 humans ill with Salmonellosis in the U.S., and two in Canada as a result of handling contaminated bags of pet food. This is more than double the 22 sick humans reported on June 13, 2012. According to Food Safety News, "Among the 24 cases with information available, 10 have been hospitalized."
There has been at least one lawsuit, filed on May 25th against both Diamond and Costco by a New Jersey couple on behalf of their infant son, who was sickened by tainted dog food to the degree he was hospitalized for three days. The couple's attorney, according to the Philly.com report said, "Both of these companies knew or should have known that these products were filthy with pathogens."
Susan Thixton, whom I've mentioned earlier, has written a comprehensive article explaining the connection between Salmonella in pet foods and human illness. For more information on Salmonellosis, see this article by the CDC (Canter for Disease Control).
In the near future, I'll be listing more information on the current list of recalled pet food brands in the form of a table.