FDA Warning Letter Reveals Filthy Conditions at Pet Treat Facility – Truth about Pet Food

On February 28, 2022 the FDA issued a Warning Letter to Pet Center, Inc. Per the warning, this company “manufactures dog treats, including Bully Sticks (bull pizzles), Chicken Breast Tenders, and various flavors of SuperChews.”

The FDA Warning stated they inspected this pet treat manufacturer “between September 21, 2021 and October 8, 2021“as a follow up to a previous inspection conducted two months earlier”between June 21, 2021 and July 13, 2021.”

Some of the FDA issues found during the second inspection:

Animal feces in the meat washing room, approximately five feet from an open screen door.”

Flies were present throughout the facility and were landing on raw, in-process bull pizzles and chicken.”

Woven mesh bags of bull pizzles were stacked against an exterior wall of your plant. Animal faeces were present atop one such bag. The woven mesh bags containing the bull pizzles were torn open, with finished product exposed to the outside environment.”

Hook racks used to hang bull pizzles for dehydrating were covered in a rust-like material on the food-contact surface on a majority of the hooks.”

Plastic clamps used to clamp bull pizzles to dry them into a curled shape were covered in dark brown to green filth material. Additionally, nearly all exposed metal components of the clamps were orange and covered in a rust-like dust.”

The Warning Letter to this pet treat manufacturer also disclosed:

You did not prepare, or have prepared, and implement a written food safety plan, as required by 21 CFR 507.31(a).”

You told our Investigator that you had not conducted a hazard analysis for any type of animal food manufactured at your facility and that you have not identified any preventive controls. You stated a consultant was working on your food safety plan, but you did not know when it would be completed. We note that this is a repeat observation from the inspection that was conducted at your facility in June through July of 2021.”

Pet food and treat manufacturers have been required for years to have a written food safety plan which includes an acknowledgment of any potential hazards and written and implemented procedures to prevent those hazards from happening. Per the Warning Letter, this treat manufacturer appeared to have ignored this legal requirement – ​​and ignored the requirement even after FDA informed them of the issue at the first inspection two months previous.

Pet Center, Inc. produces many different pet treats, too long of a list to provide here. Many are labeled with the brand name (Pet Center Inc.) but some treats are sold bulk with no labels. Pet owners can check their website for all of the products they sell, Click Here.

Click Here to read the full Warning Letter.

Wishing you and your pet the best –

Susan Thixton
Pet Food Safety Advocate
Association for Truth in Pet Food

Become a member of our pet food consumer Association. Association for Truth in Pet Food is aa stakeholder organization representing the voice of pet food consumers at AAFCO and with FDA. Your membership helps representatives attend meetings and voice consumer concerns with regulatory authorities. Click Here to learn more.

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