Three countries are recalling pet food. The recalls may not effect most of you, but they do highlight the continuing safety problems with pet food.
Australia is recalling Orijen Cat Food after over 20 cats became ill with symptoms of paralysis. Some had to be euthanized. The irradiation of the cat food is suspected to be the cause. Australia requires that certain foods coming into the country must be irradiated. Pet food must be irradiated at higher levels than human food.
China is recalling Optima dog food after it was linked with the deaths of at least 20 dogs in Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, and Hangzhou. It too is believed to be contaminated with aflatoxin. There is some confusion as to the origin of the dog food. It may have been manufactured in Australia by Doane International Pet Products (owned by Mars Pet Care, U.S.), but Doane reportedly only manufactures in the U.S. It is also possible the food is counterfeit.
I generally don’t run around like Chicken Little shouting the sky is falling, but the idea that gamma irradiation might have made Orijen Cat Food lethal is sobering. Find out more about irradiation and U.S. policies concerning it from: