In First, FDA Wants Safety Standards for Pet Food
Move designed to prevent scares like 2007 China crisis
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Oct 25, 2013 2:46 PM CDT
A customer pays for her purchases at the Bone-A-Patreat store in Des Moines, Iowa.   (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

(Newser) – The FDA today proposed new safety standards for pet food and farm animal feed, which, if passed, would be the first of their kind the agency has ever implemented. The rules cover such basic stuff as sanitation, hazard analysis, and manufacturing practices, NBC reports. "We have been pushing feed safety for a number of years," an official at the agency's Center for Veterinary Medicine says. "It's not, 'Oh, we're just making food for animals.' They're the first part of the food chain."

Assuming the rules make it through their comment period, all pet food sold in the US, whether domestic or imported, will have to adhere to them. Congress gave the FDA the power to regulate pet food in 2010, following the 2007 tainted Chinese pet food crisis, the New York Times explains—though it has always had rules against adulterants in pet food. One thing even the new rules won't do: solve the deadly jerky problem, in part because the FDA doesn't understand it yet.

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Oct 26, 2013 8:46 AM CDT
I had been feeding my cat a major brand [Purina One] of kibble. Nevertheless, she developed a stomach ailment that caused her to barf frequently and she obviously didn't feel well. I didn't put the two things together… after all, her food was touted as really healthy and "top of the line" and met self regulating industry guidelines. Finally, a vet suggested that since he couldn't find anything physically wrong with her, we change her food. Bingo… I did that, switching to a small manufacturer of premium food which guaranteed it was made in the USA from USA sourced ingredients, with chicken the #1 ingredient. She no longer barfs [except for the occasional fur ball… she is a cat, after all] and is obviously feeling much better. I am completely convinced her prior food was either contaminated or contained unsuitable ingredients. I didn't realize that her food was not regulated. To those who say that the regulation of food is a slippery slope towards "nannyism", I can only say… if ensuring that the food supply is safe is somehow wrong, may you and your pet be very very lucky every time you eat if that item has not been inspected.
Oct 25, 2013 11:28 PM CDT
HEY, they're family too...
Oct 25, 2013 10:47 PM CDT
"It's not, 'Oh, we're just making food for animals.' They're the first part of the food chain." Since when did Fluffy and Phideaux become part of the food chain? In the US anyway?