The Food and Drug Administration is proposing a new ruling to improve pet treats and pet food safety. The FDA has not previously had regulations for this industry. In recent years there have been reported incidences and recalls, in which the contamination caused illness and deaths in pets. Consumers have demanded the FDA to take action. The proposed ruling requires that pet and animal food manufacturers have procedures in place to prevent food-borne illnesses.
At Sterigenics International, Inc., animal treats and pet food are sterilized with gamma irradiation as an extra kill step after the manufacturing processing. In addition to finished goods, Sterigenics also treats packaging to ensure consumer safety. Stronger regulation will require the manufacturing facilities to test and detect salmonella and other contaminates. This ruling will reduce the chance of contaminated pet food entering the United States.
Natural and meat products have a higher risk for salmonella and bacteria. These enhanced precautionary actions will become more routine for manufacturers. The FDA’s proposal will expand these actions throughout the pet food and animal feed industries to help protect pets and livestock. The proposed ruling will also help protect humans. Pet owners often handle pet food and treats contaminated with salmonella which can spread harmful bacteria and illness to consumers.