New Diamond Pet Food Recall: 2nd Plant – What’s Missing?

by Mary Haight on May 20, 2012

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The Diamond pet food recall list for 2012 got a little longer with another food and a 2nd plant claiming headlines. Diamond pet food announced late Friday night another recall voluntary recall. Small Breed Adult Dog Lamb & Rice Formula samples, 6 pound and 18 pound bag sizes, manufactured on Aug. 26, 2011 are being recalled due to “possible” contamination with Salmonella, this time from a Missouri plant. The ubiquitous “no illnesses have been reported” phrase once again makes it into the press release. What’s missing here? One more case of confirmed Salmonella Infantis has been reported from Canada, bringing the total people affected to 15. How is that “no illnesses have been reported” (press release below)? And that’s not the only point in question that Diamond should answer.

It must also have occurred to the Diamond representative who wrote the press release that, to the general public, it appears the time it took from production date to packaging was not safe. One and two months delay in packaging finished product sounds dangerous. The average person knows little of what happens at a pet food processing plant, or what best practices demand. The presumption is that food is produced then packaged as soon as it is cooled, not a month or two later. It stands to reason Diamond would have commented on that, especially given the 22 state pet food recall of 2005 due to mold (aflatoxin) mentioned in a previous report.

Another point of confusion – you’ll notice the production and packaging dates are from August 2011, last year. The timeline to first discovery of contamination needs to be addressed. Given the quality control measures Diamond cites, 151 quality checks including random testing by an outside agency, why was the problem only discovered when the Michigan Department of Agriculture found Salmonella Infantis during a routine retail check April 2?

This same thing occurred with the recall of Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul Light Formula when Ohio public health and Department of Agriculture officials tested an opened bag from a sick person’s home and an unopened bag from a retail store, finding Salmonella Infantis in both. “No illnesses reported.” Really? Or did they say “no dog illnesses reported” on that press release?

A sample of Diamond Puppy Formula dry dog food was taken by the FDA which also proved to have the bacteria. How could this contamination be missed over so many months with so many checks in place? It might have to do with the state of the equipment, and quality controls not being followed.

A report of observations made during an FDA inspection of the Gaston SC plant (hat tip to Phyllis Entis, food safety microbiologist, eFoodAlert) is damning. “All reasonable precautions are not taken to ensure that production procedures do not contribute contamination from any source.” Each observation is followed by specifics, in this case that no microbiological analysis is done to ensure that incoming animal fat will not introduce pathogens and contaminate the finished product, and further that the company fails to maintain equipment, containers, utensils used to hold and store food in a way that prevents contamination. The real kicker here is that the equipment is not well-maintained; proper cleaning can’t be done. What is meant by “not maintained”? Diamond uses cardboard, duct tape and other non-cleanable surfaces on equipment. Food residue was visible on those surfaces.

I would like some answers, how about you? Oh, and one more thing before I go – those “shipped to” States listed as having Diamond Pet Food recalled? Don’t bank on that being accurate. Diamond references “other channels” of sales beyond regular distribution and that includes the internet. All these foods, if available on the internet, can be found anywhere, and at least one of the individual brands sells to many countries in Europe.

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Diamond Naturals Small Breed Adult Dog Lamb & Rice Formula Dry Food Added to Recall


May 18, 2012

Diamond Naturals Small Breed Adult Dog Lamb & Rice Formula samples, 6 pound and 18 pound bag sizes, manufactured on Aug. 26, 2011, have been added to the limited voluntary recall, due to potential exposure to Salmonella. No illnesses have been reported.

The product was distributed in the following states, further distribution through other pet food channels may have occurred:

  • Colorado
  • Illinois
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • Minnesota
  • Missouri
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • South Dakota
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Wisconsin

Production Code & Best Before Dates:

DSL0801, 26-Aug-2012

DSL0801, 26-Aug-2012

DSL0801, 27-Sept- 2012 (Product manufactured on Aug. 26, 2011 and packaged on Sept. 27, 2011)

DSL0801, 18-Oct- 2012 (Product manufactured on Aug. 26, 2011 and packaged on Oct. 18, 2011)

DSL0801, (Samples)

Pet owners who are unsure if the product they purchased is included in the recall, or who would like replacement product or a refund, may contact Diamond Pet Foods via a toll free call at 1-866-918-8756, Monday through Sunday, 8 am – 6pm EST.

Diamond Pet Foods apologizes for any issues this may have caused pet owners and their pets.

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10 comments
PAUX
PAUX

The brands that use this company to produce their product are also complicit. Why with their so called 151 tests on the products would the contaminated state of the plant that they use be over looked? Also in the FDA report, they mentioned someone putting their hands in the animal fat...none of the brands have this ingredient in their list on the label, very curious.

MaryHaight
MaryHaight

They have had some serious recalls, and if I am recalling correctly, they had repeated problems with that plant. It does not sound to me like they replaced their machinery...cardboard?? Really? I was so shocked when I saw that FDA initial opinion that I had to stare at and read it several times. Thanks for sharing my ire - I wonder how many of these reports find their way to the file with no action taken. With the lack of inspectors, I would think they would take each report seriously.

Amy@GoPetFriendly
Amy@GoPetFriendly

It sounds to me that Diamond is a company that can't be trusted. Not even taking the minimal precautions of properly cleaning their equipment shows a blatant disregard for the health of their customers and their pets. I wouldn't be putting my dogs' lives in their hands. Thanks again for keeping us informed on this distressing issue, Mary.

abdulrbutt
abdulrbutt

This service is a height of kindness and there is no kindness that does not bring double amount of reward and blessing with it :D Thank you Mary for being you and your service

hornblower
hornblower

Just saw on the Health Canada site that WELLNESS puppy food is also implicated in the recall. I haven't seen Wellness mentioned anywhere else & yet here it is: http://cpsr-rspc.hc-sc.gc.ca/PR-RP/recall-retrait... This recall involves the following Wellness Brand dry puppy food products: Super5Mix Large Breed Puppy, 15 lb bag UPC code: 076344891147 Date codes: JAN 09 2013 and JAN 10 2013 Super5Mix Large Breed Puppy, 30 lb bag UPC code: 076344891154 Date codes: JAN 10 2013 and JAN 11 2013

hornblower
hornblower

I just heard on a rescue board here in the Vancouver BC area that a dog had become ill after consuming Kirkland bought at Costco here - in spite of BC being supposedly unaffected. BUT apparently when the dog owners checked the production code it was on the recall list.

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