Radagast Pet Food voluntarily expands recall to include Rad Cat Raw Diet Products with best by dates of 10/19/18 through 12/3/19 due to potential health risk.
The following recall notice and Q&A information was provided by Radagast Pet Food:
August 21, 2018, Radagast Pet Food, Inc. of Portland, OR is expanding its voluntary recall to include an additional quantity of Rad Cat Raw Diet across all varieties with Best By dates of 10/19/18 through 12/3/19 because it has the potential to be contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes. Radagast Pet Food is conducting this voluntary recall out of an abundance of caution because of its strong commitment to food safety and quality.
The following Rad Cat Raw Diet products are being recalled. The products were shipped to distributors in the US and Canada between 5/10/17 and 8/9/18.
This recall includes products within the following Lot number sequential range:
Starting with and including Lot Number 62763, through and including Lot Number 63101.
These Lots have Best By (BB) dates of 10/19/18 through 12/3/19.
Rad Cat Raw Diet Grass-Fed Beef Recipe (1oz sample, 8oz, 16oz, 24oz)
Rad Cat Raw Diet Free-Range Chicken Recipe (1oz sample, 8oz, 16oz, 24oz)
Rad Cat Raw Diet Pasture-Raised Lamb Recipe (1oz sample, 8oz, 16oz, 24oz)
Rad Cat Raw Diet Natural Pork Recipe (1oz sample, 8oz, 16oz, 24oz)
Rad Cat Raw Diet Free-Range Turkey Recipe (1oz sample, 8oz, 16oz, 24oz)
Rad Cat Raw Diet Pasture-Raised Venison Recipe (1oz sample, 8oz, 16oz, 24oz)
The Lot Number and BB Date can be found on the bottom of each container.
Listeria monocytogenes is pathogenic to humans. Healthy people exposed to Listeria
monocytogenes should monitor themselves for some or all of the following symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal cramping, and fever. This pathogen can cause serious and potentially fatal infections in animals consuming the pet food and in humans that handle the pet food and touch surfaces exposed to the product. There is risk to humans from handling contaminated pet products, especially if they have not thoroughly washed their hands after having contact with the products or any surfaces exposed to these products. Consumers exhibiting these signs after having contact with this product should contact their healthcare providers.
Listeria monocytogenes can affect animals eating the product. Animals exposed to Listeria monocytogenes can display short-term symptoms such as: vomiting, diarrhea, fever, muscular or respiratory signs and anorexia. Animals can shed Listeria monocytogenes through their feces onto their coats and into the home environment and thus serve as sources of infection to humans and other animals in the household. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.
No pet or human illnesses caused by consumption of or exposure to Rad Cat Raw Diet products have been reported to date.
Consumers are encouraged to check the Lot Codes on their containers and return them to the specialty retailer where purchased for a full refund. The Company recommends consumers follow the Safe Handling instructions on each container which includes always washing hands thoroughly after handling the products.
Consumers with questions should contact Radagast Pet Food, Inc. at 1-877-567-3001 Monday-Friday 9:00am – 5:00pm Pacific Time or contact us through our website at www.RadFood.com.
The company has identified a source of potential contamination in its facility. The company has taken proactive measures to eradicate the source and it is confident that its corrective actions have eliminated the source of potential contamination related to this recall. This expanded recall will capture any additional lots that may have been affected.
Rad Cat Raw Diet Voluntary Recall Notice FAQ
August 21, 2018
What products and Lot Codes of Rad Cat Raw Diet are being voluntarily recalled?
Lots between #62763 and #63101
Where can I find the Lot Code and Best by Date?
All Lot Codes can be found on the bottom of the container.
Why were these products recalled?
There is a very unlikely chance that these lots of Rad Cat could have come into contact with a small source of bacteria. While we are confident that all of the affected products have been recalled, in cooperation with the FDA, we are recalling all lots that could have a remote chance of any exposure.
The source of bacteria which caused the recall has NEVER come into contact with any of our food products, but did come into contact with some of the drippings. After dismantling the entire piece of equipment in question, down to the motor, we found a small part with a concealed screw. When we dismantled the part, and looked at the screw, it looked and smelled clean – as it should because it is sanitized daily. And, our equipment have always had negative test results for bacteria in previous testing. However, somehow bacteria were able to get up inside the screw hole.
We identified and addressed the source of intermittent contamination, fixed it, and have every confidence in our products. While this was a terrible accident, we take full responsibility for what happened and we have worked overtime and invested substantial manpower and resources into identifying the source and removing it, sterilizing our equipment and sanitizing our entire facility. The quality of our products and the health of kitties and their families are top priorities and not things we take lightly. Although we felt confident we had recalled all products potentially affected, we have decided to take this extraordinary measure to pull product off the market that could have a remote chance of being contaminated with even a small amount of bacteria. We have always performed sampling and testing in our environment (and products), which includes all of our processing equipment, floor, drains, and literally everything from floor to ceiling (including the ceiling, actually). And we will continue to do so going forward.
Did any cats or people get sick?
There have been no reported illnesses in pets or in humans. While some recalls happen because of reported illness, that is NOT the case here. This recall is simply out of our genuine care for our customers and to be super cautious.
What have you done about it?
We are confident in our products going forward and we hope you will be too. So, how do we know what we’re making now is safe? We found the problem and we fixed it. That little screw and ring it screws into come off every single day and we haven’t had a positive swab or food sample since. We have taken very aggressive corrective actions to make sure all of the products we are releasing for sale are safe for kitties and the humans who feed them. In fact, we have taken some extreme steps:
We had a treatment done in our production area so all of our equipment was sterilized. And, we take 150 samples of our packaged product every single day. We have also decided to implement High Pressure Processing to our venison and lamb varieties.
Don’t you test and keep the environment clean?
Yes, absolutely! Our commitment to the health of kitties and safety of our products has always our first priority and this recall is a testament that commitment. Our sanitation has always been exemplary. We have never, ever had a sanitation violation. In fact, we were complimented by federal inspectors on the cleanliness of our facility. We also have never had any sanitation violations from our Oregon Department of Agriculture inspectors or from USDA APHIS when they come to inspect us (and we can prove it). We have always had great people that care about what they do and we take pride in having a spotless facility.
And, we test all of our varieties for Salmonella, E. coli O157:H7, E. coli STEC (for ruminant varieties), and Listeria monocytogenes. We also test all of the raw material we receive before we use them in our products for all of the aforementioned pathogens.
What is Listeria?
There are many types of Listeria, of which Listeria monocytogenes is only one. It is very commonly found in the environment, mostly outdoors, in soil and even in our homes, as it is easily carried in on the soles of our shoes and the feet of our cats and dogs. Sometimes it can be found in processing environments and on many agricultural products, such as fruits, vegetables and even on raw meat ingredients, poultry and fish.
Here is what the FDA Guidance #245 from January, 2018 says about Listeria:
There have been recalls of L. monocytogenes contaminated pet food (mostly raw dog and cat food) due to the potential to cause listeriosis in humans or pets (Refs. 8, 9 and 10). We are not aware of any confirmed cases of humans becoming ill after handling L. monocytogenes contaminated pet food or from contact with infected dogs and cats.
Doesn’t all raw pet food have the risk of containing pathogens?
Every type of food contains some risk, which includes raw diets. We have always done the very best we can to mitigate risk and to avoid the presence of pathogens in any of our products, but bacteria can be naturally present in any raw food. The FDA recognizes only two official “kill-steps”, which are cooking and irradiation. All other steps, such as HPP, are only “intervention” steps, which are designed to reduce risk of pathogens in products, such as raw meat. So, unless a product has undergone a cooking step or irradiation, it has the potential to contain pathogens. But sometimes even the cooking step doesn’t work efficiently enough, as there have been many
recalls for dry food that have been contaminated with salmonella and/or listeria.
What is Rad Cat doing to make sure their foods are safe?
We have always made the safety of our products our number one concern. That is why we have engaged an expert food safety consulting firm to help us enhance our processing and testing methods. We will continue to use high pressure processing on our poultry ingredients and continue to evaluate other intervention steps to ensure the highest quality and safety possible.
All of our meats are treated with ozonated water, which is a very effective anti-microbial treatment (for example, many fish processors use it to extend the shelf life of their products). Ozone is also used in our processing environment for cleaning and sanitation. It is used by many processors for this purpose and is extremely effective.
All of our ingredients are the very same that are intended for human consumption and we test raw materials from suppliers.
We operate our own manufacturing plant, where we make all of our products. We operate our plant under the same guidelines for human food facilities, which includes a Food Safety Plan, environmental and product testing programs. We use a HACCP safety system, that is recognized by the USDA and FDA as a preventive approach to food safety, which helps us comply with their guidelines.
Please visit our website at http://radfood.com/education/safety_and_quality for more information about our product safety.
What should I do if I believe my pet has been exposed to the recalled product?
It is very unlikely that any pets will contract illness from Listeria. The symptoms are very similar to those that occur in humans, such as: vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy and fever. If any of these symptoms present themselves in your pet, please contact your veterinarian.
Does this mean my cat is going to get Listeria poisoning?
While we can’t give a black and white ‘yes’ or ‘no’, we can say that it is highly unlikely. Cats have very acidic digestive systems that actually kill bacteria or make it so they cannot proliferate there. Cats are exposed to extremely high levels of bacteria every day and they are designed by Nature to tolerate high bacterial loads that would make humans ill. They live very close to the ground and pick up considerable bacteria on their paws, which they lick frequently. The chances of a cat becoming sick from bacteria found in frozen, raw food, is highly unlikely. Cats very rarely get listeriosis and typically don’t show signs of disease, even if they are carriers. Our best advice is to watch your kitty and if you see any symptoms that could be illness from Listeria and
if you have fed these lots, we encourage you to seek veterinary treatment right away.
With regard to bacterial infections in cats, here is what the FDA says in their Guidance #245 from January 2018:
Salmonellosis is uncommon in dogs and cats. When the disease is seen in an adult dog or cat, the animal typically has another infection or debilitating condition at the same time. Puppies and kittens can get the disease if they ingest a large number of the bacteria”.
For cats and dogs, the bacteria must be ingested in very high numbers, which is typically far greater than what would be in frozen, raw pet food.
Is Listeriosis common in cats and what are the symptoms?
No – in fact, it is a very infrequent occurrence. The symptoms of Listeriosis can mimic other illnesses, such as viral infections and gastroenteritis from other causes. Because cats have a very acidic digestive system, bacteria is often neutralized or cannot proliferate in such a hostile environment.
This bacteria can be present in our pets’ environment and they could be exposed to it on a regular basis, especially if they go outside. Most Listeria monocytogenes found in homes is carried in on the soles of our shoes from the out of doors. There are also many other organisms that we track in to our homes that our felines walk through and then lick their paws.
However, there are some cats that can have compromised immune functions, for a variety of reasons, and can become ill. Some cats that have a higher stomach pH can also be more susceptible.
The symptoms associated with this illness are very similar to those that would present in humans, which can include diarrhea, bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and fever.
What should I do if I have any of the products that are being recalled?
Please return recalled products to the retailer you purchased from so they can be disposed of in a secure garbage receptacle. For refund claims, return affected lots to the retailer you purchased from along with proof of purchase for a full refund. Please make sure you identify the affected product by the Lot Code and Best By Date, and not the product code (UPC barcode). Only the announced Lot Codes are being recalled.
If you purchased any of the recalled Lots from an online retailer, contact that retailer for assistance with your refund claim.
More information about this recall can be found at www.RadFood.com or call 877-567-3001 Monday through Friday from 9:00am-5:00pm PST.
What about Lot Codes that are not on the recall list? Can I return these?
We are confident that no lots other than those currently being voluntarily recalled are affected.
We will provide refunds for all lots associated with this recall and will honor our 100% product guarantee for other lots if customers’ cats will not eat the product.
Doesn’t HPP kill Listeria?
High Pressure Processing at 87,000 psi has been proven to rupture the cell walls of E.coli, Salmonella and Listeria species. However, it is not recognized by the FDA as an official ‘kill step’ for raw pet food.
If I have more questions, who do I ask?
You can contact us directly through email at info@RadFood.com or call 877-567-3001 from 9:00am – 5:00pm PST. We have very limited staff, so we have hired some help to help us answer calls and questions. If you call our office and get voicemail, please leave a message. We will be experiencing a high call volume, so please bear with us. If you email, we will respond as soon as we possibly can. We always respond to our customers and will respond to every message in the order in which they are received.
Social media: Sometimes messages and posts here aren’t seen for a variety of reasons, so we encourage you to please call or email with questions. We will do our best to monitor our social media platforms and respond in a timely manner.
If, for some reason, you call, email or post on FB or Instagram and do not get a response, please try again. Sometimes there are circumstances when we don’t receive messages. Responding to your questions is very important to us, so please try again.
Retail stores that carry our products will also be notified of this recall and can assist you with