Response from Senator Marco Rubio
Florida Senator Marco Rubio response to my letter highlighting the existing condition of pet food. Very concerning statement.
This is the letter I sent to Senator Marco Rubio – my Florida Senator (the letter was also sent to several other Florida government representatives – no other responses received)…
In early 2007 there were two significant food recalls. One was peanut butter (Peter Pan – February 2007), the other was pet food (Menu Foods – March 2007). Both foods violated the exact same law of the FD&C Act (introducing an adulterated product into interstate commerce). The peanut butter recall resulted in 700 illnesses – no deaths. The pet food recall resulted in 8,500 pet deaths and countless serious illnesses. The peanut butter recall resulted in a plea arrangement fine of $11.2 million dollars to government; the pet food recall resulted in a plea arrangement fine of $35,000 to government. Something is very wrong.
I’ve had enough. I’ve had enough of regulatory bias with pet food. Two companies – recalls one month apart – each pleaded guilty to the exact same violation of the FD&C Act. One was held accountable, the other received a slap on the wrist.
I’ve had enough. I’ve had enough worry and stress over feeding my pet. I’ve had enough detective work to determine if my pet food of choice is actual food and quality for my pet to consume. Are you aware that pet food is not regulated as food? It’s regulated as feed – such as livestock feed. Are you aware that each State Department of Agriculture and FDA openly allows pet food to violate the FD&C Act allowing diseased animal tissues (and much more) to become pet food ingredients? Please become aware. Read the FDA’s Compliance Policies on animal feed. Unknowing consumers purchase this ‘food’ without the slightest knowledge of what hideous quality of ingredients it could be made from.
I’ve had enough of misleading pet food labels. Pet food is openly allowed to mislead consumers through images of food on labels when nothing inside the bag or can even closely resembles those images by each State Department of Agriculture and FDA.
I’ve waited long enough for FDA to find the reason behind thousands of pet deaths linked to Chinese jerky treats.
Experience and history tell human food manufacturers they will be highly penalized by government authorities should they sell an adulterated product. On the other hand, experience and history tell pet food manufacturers they will receive a slight slap on the wrist should they sell an adulterated product. I’ve had enough of this. I am asking you – as my elected official to put an immediate end to the regulatory bias surrounding pet food.
If it is named food – pet food – it should be held to the regulations of food. If the FD&C Act defines pet food as food, and clearly explains what is considered adulterated and prohibited, those laws should be enforced. I am asking you to make this happen. I want to trust that the pet food I purchase is abiding by law and is not misleading me. Laws are there, no one is enforcing them with pet food.
I await your response to this very serious issue.
And this is Senator Rubio’s response to me…(bold added for emphasis)
Dear Ms. Thixton,
Thank you for contacting me regarding the protection and well being of animals.
Like you, I understand that the protection of domestic animals and wildlife is an important component of the preservation of our country’s natural resources. It is also important we strike an appropriate balance between the protection of our environment and natural resources, while at the same time not placing burdensome regulations on businesses that could undermine our nation’s economic recovery. I will continue to monitor progress on legislative proposals related to animal protection, and will remain mindful of your concerns as the Senate addresses these issues.
Again, thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts with me. It is an honor and privilege to serve the people of Florida. If I can be of any further help to you, please do not hesitate to contact me.
United States Senator
My response back to Senator Rubio…
Dear Senator Rubio,
It was with great distress I read your response to me regarding serious existing condition of pet food in the U.S. Your words tell me you are more in favor of industry than the people – the pet people.
You stated to me “It is also important we strike an appropriate balance between the protection of our environment and natural resources, while at the same time not placing burdensome regulations on businesses that could undermine our nation’s economic recovery.”
By ‘not placing burdensome regulations on businesses’ the pet food industry today is allowed by FDA to violate the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. Should ‘our nation’s economic recovery’ be based on an industry in violation of federal law that deceives the public? I hope you don’t feel this way.
Please confirm with FDA that the agency allows pet food to violate the FD&C Act – please read the FDA Compliance Policies in reference to animal food. Then please provide me with your response if pet food made from diseased animal tissues or pesticide contaminated vegetables is acceptable to you in the name of ‘economic recovery’. Voting pet food consumers (by the way, there are more than 74 million homes in the U.S. with pets) would like to know exactly where you stand on this issue.
Should the Senator respond, it will be posted.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
What’s in Your Pet’s Food?
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The 2015 List
Susan’s List of trusted pet foods. Click Here
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