In First, FDA Wants Safety Standards for Pet Food

Move designed to prevent scares like 2007 China crisis

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted Oct 25, 2013 2:46 PM CDT

(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.

A customer pays for her purchases at the Bone-A-Patreat store in Des Moines, Iowa.
A customer pays for her purchases at the Bone-A-Patreat store in Des Moines, Iowa.   (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)
  (Shutterstock)
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