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Unbelievable FDA Guidance Document to Raw Pet Food Manufacturers

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  1. Renee Kraft

    Thank you Susan for looking after the health of our dogs and cats so well. The average person does not have the ability to do that, so having you fight for us is a big bonus.

  2. Mandy B

    I wonder how many (non-raw) pet food companies would immediately be out of business if the FDA said all meats had to be human-grade across the board.

  3. Joy

    I read through the document and it made me sick to my stomach. Why should I “buy” a “raw manufactured diet” when I can go to the store and buy the same food that I eat for my dog and make my own. It makes no sense. Guess what lobbyist has this agency in their pocket.

  4. Michelle

    Susan, Thank You so much for your tireless work! What would we do with out you???!
    Are there demented people working for the FDA? This makes no sense at all!
    I am so confused. I can’t afford a raw diet for my 65lb rescue but I am scared to death to feed him a commercial pet food. He has been sharing my organic meats along with HK but there are times that I just don’t have meat in the house $$$. I want to feel safe feeding him dog food if I have to. This is all so scary!

  5. Sage

    I agree this is an obvious double standard BUT at the expense of getting jumped on for saying this – some Raw Pet Food manufacturers – especially the smaller companies such as Just Food for Dogs are already using USDA certified Human Grade meats and it’s nice for them (and us) that the FDA is essentially endorsing what they are doing.

    ALSO – as a consumer, I would have more peace of mind knowing that a RAW Pet Food IS Human Grade and USDA certified. It’s bad enough that animals get sick and die from eating over cooked food made from NON-human grade and highly toxic body parts and other inedible ingredients but think how much worse a RAW Food must be if made from the same toxic and non-human grade ingredients.

    The very best solution of course is for ALL pet food ingredients to be Certified Human Grade AND for the FDA to enforce this along with all the other consumer protections written into law that they DO NOT ENFORCE.

    So grateful to SUSAN for keeping us updated on these FDA laws and guidelines and wish even more people would subscribe to these posts.

    I’ve started carrying around little slips of paper with THIS WEB ADDRESS to hand out to people when the timing is appropriate such as in a pet food aisle!

    1. Michelle

      Sage I agree with you 100%. I would rather have stricter guidelines on raw food. Double standards, yes, but I for one am happy to see it.

  6. Larry Clive

    I guess we’re about to find out if this guy Levinson is indeed worthy of the term “Honorable”.
    I’m betting not.

  7. D

    Thank you Susan for staying on top of this. I believe the FDA thinking is cooking kills all the bad bacteria of a sick or down animal. How could that make a pet sick, right?? I am appalled at their “guidance” that commercial raw use human grade meat but zero restriction on the quality of ingredients in kibble. I can’t think of a commercial raw food that doesn’t use USDA inspected meat

  8. Heidi Dixner

    What the… !!!! “email for the Inspector General’s Office was returned stating “Your message couldn’t be delivered to the recipient because you don’t have permission to send to it.” From their website, “…Mr. Levinson entered public service…” Whoa. As a card carrying member of the American public and a former public servant I find this worthy of reprimand by the public he purportedly serves 😛

  9. Jude

    Those who care about their pets wouldn’t buy raw food if it was disgusting garbage, so it wouldn’t be easy to sneak that past the pet food consumer. So the FDA just makes it mandatory to use human grade pet food for the raw diet people.

    However, it’s so easy to sneak vile products into canned food or kibble by adulterating them to look good, so the FDA, a terrible excuse for a federal agency, allows that.

    And the world continues to spin on its axis as power and money wheels and deals with little to no regard for animals, the environment, etc., as we, the quasi-humans, are denied our say in governing our country.


  10. Wendy

    Big Dan’s sells downded, diseased animals as pet food and ships it across the country. Reading this seems it is illegal? I personally don’t order it though.

    1. Lourde

      Big Dans does not use diseased animals. They do use downed ones, but that is much different.

  11. B Dawson

    Here’s a thought. Throughout the text Susan quoted here that pertains to raw, FDA is using the word “food”, not “feed”. Can they be creating a distinct category here? This could be a prelude to major regulatory changes for the raw industry, ie. we all know many vets diss raw food and with the support of the, ahem, poor quality kibble pushers would love to see the category banned. By isolating it from other pet food categories, it will be easier to come down hard without risking collateral damage to Purina, et al.

    Back door legislation is becoming commonplace. By making things too costly, regulated, uninsurable or paperwork-filled our government effectively bans products from herbs to “invasive” plants to healthcare options. This sort of legislation is easy to push through as safety measures and rarely causes the public outcry that a ban would trigger in part because most consumers don’t realize the larger ramifications.

    An aside, but still of interest to readers of this website: there is legislation pending right now that will remove the “country of origin” labeling on human food and allow U.S. raised livestock to be transported to China for processing, then re-imported & sold in the U.S. without any labeling requirements whatsoever. After the melamine fiasco I am aghast that any agency could tallow this. But of course China is heavily invested in the U.S.

    1. Jude

      Interesting info. I have had absolutely no faith in our government for many, many years. After seeing videos and reading info about factory farming, I cannot in good conscience eat any animal flesh. I’m an ovo-lacto vegetarian and we buy eggs sold by our local health food store. I hate eating commercial dairy products, but we do eat commercial yogurt and cottage cheese.

      Our government doesn’t protect us from poor or unsafe products and now things are just getting worse. Think Monsanto and know that money can buy just about anything and anyone.

  12. Gitta

    Wow – the man is being paid by taxpayer money and that same taxpayer must have permission to send an email????????? WTF? Or does “public service” mean he is publicly serving the interest of crap pet food?

    Apparently the FDA does not care how bad and how low their reputation sinks. Just when you think it couldn’t possibly get any lower……

    Perhaps they haven’t heard of the brand new invention, called “the internet” which makes it quite difficult to keep secrets from that pesky public.

    So, the meat has to be human grade – are we talking the same “human grade” claim that legally cannot be made?

    Crony capitalism at its worst. Again.

  13. Sabrina

    I am a raw feeder, so for me I am happy to hear that my dog’s food will have to be “human grade”. I however DO NOT find it appropriate to include diseased meat in ANY of our pet’s food. Do you think though, that the FDA deems diseased meat an appropriate protein source because it is being “cooked” when included in kibble or canned food? Therefore any of the bacteria would be denatured/killed in the process? It’s just such a crazy double standard I am trying to wrap my head around their reasoning for this.

    1. T Allen

      Yes, I believe that is the rationale. But cooking does not kill all spores nor does it remove toxins, heavy metals, drug residues, etc. Keep feeding home-cooked meals, raw, part-cooked- in the case of store bought chicken or even fully cooked is better than the garbage we’ve been paying big bucks for!

    2. Susan Thixton Author

      Yes – to my understanding that is exactly the FDA feeling on it. They care about bacteria – not quality of ingredients.

  14. Laurie Matson

    I wish the FDA would separate Pet Food from animal Feed! But highly unlikely that will ever happen!!

    1. Susan Thixton Author

      I asked FDA to do just that a year ago at the AAFCO meeting – they told me it would involve changing federal and state law and would never happen. But it should. Food should not be called food if it does not meet the legal requirements of food.

  15. W.E. Piechocki

    Susan, thank you for this information. Yes it is a double standard that we have been fighting for years.

    We have been serving real raw food to thousands of pet in Florida for over a decade. Our brand, BioComplete Natural Diet and Bio Basic are available in health minded animal supplies in Florida. From day 1, we have only sourced & used USDA inspected and approved meats and poultry in our foods. When USDA inspectors visited our facility, they told us we had to label our food for “animal use only”. I then asked if “I go to the meat counter at Whole Foods or any store that does custom cuts or grinds, and tell them it’s for my pet, are they required to label theirs as such too?” The silence was deafening…

  16. Jane Eagle

    I stopped trusting FDA years ago. They are stealing our tax money and not doing the job WE pay them to do. That said, I feed my dogs raw food, homemade by me. For those who have trouble affording the meat (I’m vegan, myself) search for places that supply bulk meats, i.e. to restaurants. I get ground turkey for $1.99 per pound, minimum 10 pound package. Chicken necks are $.69 (after I remove the fat, it’s more like $1.25). They can tell me where the meat comes from (I asked about China).

  17. Cheryl Mallon-Bond

    OMG!!! I cannot believe they can get away w/ BLATANTLY going against their OWN LAWS!!!!! There is NO DOUBT that the FDA is on a “witch hunt” against raw food manufacturer’s, POSING as if they are trying to help keep our pets health safe! Meanwhile, they play their “smoke & mirrors” game byletting kibble & canned food STILL break federal law codes! The financial kick-backs going on between the big pet”feed” manufacturers & the FDA has to be monumental….they are “in bed” w/ one another, all at the cost of precious animals lives! DISPICABLE! They have ZERO CONSCIENCE!!!

  18. Lola

    I agree the FDA is playing favorites. Can raw pet food manufacturers use this to their advantage with advertising? Purina called out Blue Buffalo in court with testing etc., I’m sure money is a factor for smaller commercial raw companies, but couldn’t they do the same? If their food has strict meat quality guidelines and dry and canned foods don’t, then I would advertise the heck out of that if I was a raw pet food company as an advantage to consumers.

  19. Peter

    Thanks for continuing to hit on the issue of FDA Compliance Policies, which consumers truly had no awareness of before your essays.

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