After rash of pet deaths, feds propose new rule to protect food

Posted by Rob Hotakainen on October 28, 2013 

Cats roam the grounds at the Ernest Hemingway House and Museum in Key West, Fla.


Just days after announcing that 580 dogs and cats had died after eating jerky pet treats, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it has proposed a new rule aimed at improving the safety of animal food.

Last week the agency said that food imported from China was suspected in the rash of pet deaths caused by jerky treats. Officials said they had received reports involving 3,600 dogs and 10 cats getting ill from the jerky pet treats. The treats are sold as jerky tenders or strips made of chicken, duck, sweet potatoes or dried fruit.

The rule would require makers of pet food to be sold in the U.S. to devise a plan and come up with procedures to prevent foodborne illness. And the rule would make the companies responsible for any problems that arise.

The FDA said it will hold three public meetings on the proposed rule: on Nov. 21, in College Park, Md., on Nov. 25 in Chicago and on Dec. 6 in Sacramento.



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