Chicken Jerky Treats from China Cause Illness & Death, Remain on Costco Shelves

by Mary Haight on June 10, 2014

chicken jerky treats from chinaAfter some 7 years of laboratory testing, an FDA investigative trip to China, countless FDA consumer warnings, 5600 animals made ill, with health permanently compromised, or the 1,000 who died from eating chicken jerky treats from China (and duck and sweet potato treats also), Costco refuses to remove this potentially toxic product from their shelves.

Perhaps Costco did not hear that at the end of May, Nestle Purina Petcare settled the lawsuit consumers brought for $6.5 million? Maybe $6.5 million is nothing compared to the profit Costco is making off jerky treat sales? I wonder — were all their PR people sent on vacation? They must be spinning in place, given the considerable damage this is doing to their brand, recently hailed for their average hourly pay to employees. Does Costco not care about all the pet loving customers they are losing? Why would you want to bite the hand that feeds you?

It should be mentioned here that Costco’s vice president in the last quarter of 2013 said that his corporation was performing “their own” tests on the chicken jerky treats they offer from China, as well as having their Chinese quality control test the product before shipping, ostensibly adding another layer of caution by hiring an independent laboratory in China.

I am flummoxed. How is it that Costco believes it knows what to look for when the FDA, which has tested for many known and suspected toxins, cannot find the reason for all these deaths after years of investigating? I am stunned by this posturing, and can only think denial is playing a serious role in Costco’s refusal to keep their customer’s furry families safe. See for yourself:

“Vice President Craig Wilson, Costco double-tests every shipment of jerky treats that comes into the store both in China, and here in the US,  and also makes trips to China twice a year to do more testing in the plants.

“We test for all microbial and chemical adulterants, along with any unapproved antibiotic use,” Wilson wrote in a recent notice to warehouse managers regarding chicken and duck pet treats from China.  “Again, every lot is tested.” (Komo News)

While we don’t know if the company is adding new possible adulterants and toxics to their test list, or if they are they comparing notes with the FDA, one thing is certain. The appearance of doing the right thing is not the same as actually doing it.

Costco, do the right thing, forgo your profit from these deadly chicken jerky treats from China — return the product to the maker. You might want to consider joining PetCo and Petsmart in phasing out the sale of pet treats from China!

Note to readers: If you would like to hear the behind the scenes story about what’s happening now with new regulations/rules for manufacturers and early warning systems for pet parents, you might want to stop by on Thursday or Friday…*hmm, or Saturday*. We should have our interview with a couple of people instrumental in building a community for those victims whose dogs were killed or harmed by these treats published. These are the people who beat the drum for years to get publicity needed to spread the word, talking to Congressmen and agencies, relating their stories at a hearing in Washington D.C. while keeping the pressure on retail and industry to get answers and action.




Thank you for advocating for animals who have no voice, Mary!! YOU are an inspiration and happy to spread the word!!


So what you're saying is that after the illnesses and deaths, Costco has increased testing, and now all batches are checked twice independently as well as the facilities being inspected, but you are mad because you think they should cancel ALL shipments coming from ANY Chinese company? That's ridiculous. If the FDA searched for years and never found anything wrong with the dog treats, why should Costco stop selling them? Obviously it is horrible and tragic that people lost their pets and the pets lost their lives and/or health, but how many millions of dogs are eating these treats? And has it been confirmed that the treats were the cause? A court settlement doesn't necessarily demonstrate guilt, it just means the company chose to avoid a lawsuit.

MaryEHaight moderator

@Monique I think you missed the point. And it's not that FDA hasn't found anything wrong with the treats.Deet has been found in samples as have illegal antibiotics.among other things.

Costco is testing for known contaminants, and that's all well and good, but that doesn't mean the treats are safe. FDA, NASA scientists, and others have tried to find one common element that would kill or sicken all these pets and they haven't found it. Costco would have to be actively looking for something no one has thought of yet. They are not doing that.

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