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Testing done by food labs questioned

by Therese on May 27, 2008

in Health, Pet Health, Pets

20080527chemist.jpgThe Chicago Tribune is reporting that labs who test foods are not required to report problematic tests to the FDA. Additionally, many companies will repeat tests until they get the results they want. The article doesn’t specifically talk about pet food, except to say the recall sparked concern about imported foods.

A congressional committee is investigating whether some private U.S. laboratories were instructed to withhold samples of tainted food so that importers could get their goods into the United States.

In a May 1 letter to 10 labs, the House Committee on Energy and Commerce suggests they may have been encouraged by importing companies to discard test results that had failed Food and Drug Administration standards.

“We’re gathering information from both the FDA and private industry about the labs almost being complicit in helping importers game the system,” said Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Mich.), chairman of the Oversight and Investigations subcommittee that is investigating the labs and food companies. “Someone told us you pay for the result you want to get from the labs.”


In other instances, the letter says, importers whose food failed tests at one laboratory would hire a different lab to continue testing until they got a positive result.

“This repeated testing is done without alerting FDA that potentially dangerous food has been imported into this country — a practice which we find deplorable,” the letter states.


The potential danger in some imported foods became the subject of scrutiny in March 2007, when pet food ingredients made in China were found to be contaminated with melamine, a compound used to make plastic.

Since then, the FDA has reversed a decision to close 7 of the 13 agency labs it operates and has pledged to expand the inspection of food imports, which have exploded in recent years.

Read the rest here.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

YesBiscuit! May 27, 2008 at 3:30 pm

Well, color me astonished.


Therese May 27, 2008 at 3:58 pm

HA! You and me both. . . I was so shocked when I first read it ya coulda knocked me over with a feather!


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