Oprah Winfrey’s ‘O’ magazine, August 2016, told pet food consumers “to avoid anything with human grade on the label”. ‘O’ no.
In the August 2016 ‘O’ magazine is a story titled ‘Does my Dog Really Need A Personal Trainer?’. Within that article is the section “Is fancy food worth it?”
The response to this question was…“Depends. The giant name brands employ nutritionists to make sure their formulas are balanced, says veterinarian Steven Marks, a clinical professor of critical care and Internal medicine at North Carolina State University, who suggests sticking with them.”
“Suggests sticking with them”…the “giant name brands”. ‘O’ no.
The ‘giant name brands’ we assume would mean Mars, Purina and Hill’s. Mars and Purina products include ingredients whose legal definition violate federal law. None of the ‘giant name brands’ manufacture a food quality pet food, all are feed quality pet foods.
The article attacks human grade pet food too, stating “you may want to avoid anything with ‘human grade’ on the label (jargon that’s not recognized by the association that drafts regulation for pet food), says veterinarian Camille Torres-Henderson”.
‘O’ no, ‘O’ no, ‘O’ no.
Veterinarian Camille Torres-Henderson certainly hasn’t been to an AAFCO meeting to learn that ‘human grade’ is clearly defined and IS NOT ‘jargon’. The term ‘human grade’ on pet food labels has been verified by FDA for the past 10 years (or so). Dr. Camille Torres-Henderson must be listening to the chatter from the “giant name brands”.
And the last ‘O’ no: “If your vet has prescribed a special diet for heart, liver, or kidney disease, buy the food from her office. Many kinds claiming to treat specific medical conditions haven’t been evaluated for safety by the FDA.”
‘O’ no…the FDA has not evaluated the safety of any Rx pet food. Zero. From an FDA guidance document regarding prescription pet food “These products have not been evaluated by FDA for safety, efficacy, or nutritional adequacy.”
O Magazine…how could you let this happen?
Sent to O Magazine July 20, 2016…
Dear O Magazine
In the August 2016 edition of your magazine, article titled Does My Dog Really Need A Personal Trainer?, your magazine made some incorrect and misleading statements to pet owners. The article sought information from veterinarian Steven Marks who suggested pet owners ‘stick with the giant name brands’ of pet food.
You should be aware that many of ‘the giant name brands’ of pet food utilize ingredients that violate federal law. Federal law states a food (human or animal) is considered adulterated “(5) if it is, in whole or in part, the product of a diseased animal or of an animal which has died otherwise than by slaughter;”. FDA facilitates illegal pet food by issuing Compliance Policy Guides telling manufacturers “Pet food consisting of material from diseased animals or animals which have died otherwise than by slaughter, which is in violation of 402(a)(5) will not ordinarily be actionable.” Veterinarian Steven Marks clearly is unaware of the legal tricks allowed by FDA and utilized by ‘the giant name brands’.
The article also sought comment from veterinarian Camille Torres-Henderson who told readers “you may want to avoid anything with ‘human grade’ on the label (jargon that’s not recognized by the association that drafts regulation for pet food).” This statement is incorrect; human grade pet food is not ‘jargon’. Human Grade pet foods are legally defined by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, and have been evaluated by FDA for truthfulness of statement for over 10 years.
Lastly your article stated “If your vet has prescribed a special diet for heart, liver, or kidney disease, buy the food from her office. Many kinds claiming to treat specific medical conditions haven’t been evaluated for safety by the FDA.” This comment is somewhat misleading. FDA does not ‘evaluate’ the safety of any prescription pet food. None.
Educated pet food consumers are disappointed that O Magazine would relay such misleading and incorrect information to pet food consumers. We ask O Magazine to retract the statements made in this article that were incorrect, but more importantly – we ask O Magazine to take an investigative look into pet food. What you will find is horrifying. Laws ignored all across the U.S. (all animal foods). Extreme collusion between industry and regulatory. Pet food consumers need O Magazine, need Oprah Winfrey to stand with us to right the incredible wrongs being ignored in pet food.
Sincerely, representing pet food consumers,
Sincere thanks to the pet owner that alerted me to the misleading information published in O Magazine.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
What’s in Your Pet’s Food?
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