…make sure you ask the manufacturer the country of origin of the ingredients. This alert is applicable to pet food manufactured anywhere in the world.
African Swine Fever is devastating the hog/pig industry in China. From a July 2019 article on Reuters: “Experts estimate the disease will wipe out about a third of China’s pork production this year, or 18 million tonnes.” Where will 18 million tons of of dead animals be disposed of? Probably in pet food ingredients. We can safety assume this based on the repeated statements and presentations provided at AAFCO last month.
At the August 2019 AAFCO meeting, FDA repeatedly addressed the concern of African Swine Fever being spread in the U.S. by pet food. Below is a slide from one presentation:
Though it was never discussed publicly at AAFCO, this slide tells us that regulatory authorities are already aware that China is shipping pork pet food ingredients into the U.S. The slide also tells us that regulatory authorities are very concerned that China will be or already is exporting African Swine Fever contaminated pet food ingredients.
FDA stated during the AAFCO meeting that the African Swine Fever disease cannot be spread to cats or dogs. However, they also stated little is known about the disease. Regardless to whether cats and dogs can or cannot be sickened with African Swine Fever, your pet should NOT be eating a pet food with ingredients sourced from African Swine Fever diseased animals (or any other diseased animal).
If your pet’s food (or treat) contains a pork ingredient such as Pork or Pork Meal – or contains a generic meat or fat ingredient such as Animal Fat or Meat Meal or Meat and Bone Meal – – call or email your pet food manufacturer and ask for the country of origin of these ingredients. Make sure the pet food company provides you a response in writing or record the phone call for your records.
And know that the U.S. is not the only country these potentially contaminated pork pet food ingredients could be shipped to. Pet foods manufacturers all over the world could be receiving contaminated ingredients from China without pet owner knowledge. Ask your pet food for country of origin information no matter where it is manufactured.
At this point in time, based on information known by us – the African Swine Fever disease risk is limited only to pork originating in China. There is no known concern regarding pork pet food ingredients sourced outside of China.
Wishing you and your pet(s) the best,
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What’s in Your Pet’s Food?
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