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FDA releases report on Diamond Pet Foods

by Therese on May 15, 2012

in Pet Food Recall, Pet Health

The FDA has issued a list of observations made during an April 20, 2012 inspection of the Diamond Pet Foods plant in Gaston, SC. The sloppiness of how the plant is maintained provides for numerous ways for the food they manufacture to become contaminated. Here’s the bulk of the report:


All reasonable precautions are not taken to ensure that production procedures do not contribute contamination from any source.

Specifically, no microbiological analysis is conducted or there is no assurance that incoming animal fat will not introduce pathogens into their production and cause contamination of finished product. Also, the firm’s current sampling procedure for animal digest does preclude potential for adulteration after sampling and during storage in warehouse. On 4/13/12, an employee was observed touching in-line filter oil with bare hands.


Failure to provide hand washing and sanitizing facilities at each location in the plant where needed.

Specifically, there are no facilities for hand washing or hand sanitizing in the production areas where there is direct contact with exposed finished feed/food.


Failure to maintain equipment, containers and utensils used to convey, hold, and store food in a manner that protects against contamination.

Specifically, paddles conveyor (South or Middle conveyor leading to the screeners going to packaging) were observed to have gouges and cuts, which exhibited feed residues. The damage to the paddles may allow for harborage areas for microorganisms and are difficult to clean and sanitize.


Failure to maintain equipment so as facilitate cleaning of the equipment.

Specifically, firm utilizes cardboard, duct tape, and other non cleanable surfaces on equipment. These materials were observed to have residues adhering. The foam gaskets around access doors to the bucket elevators were observed in deteriorating condition exhibited an accumulation of feed residues and dust.

Despite Diamond’s touted 151 Quality Checks, according to the report, the Diamond plant is a total mess. And obviously, the things mentioned in the report don’t just happen overnight – deteriorating gaskets, duct tape, lack of cleanliness, etc. With a manufacturing plant in that condition, it only makes sense that this has been an ongoing problem. So, how many people and pets have become ill over the past – who knows how long – as a result of contaminated food manufactured by Diamond?

My guess is that all of the Diamonds plants are a total mess. They still have openings in all three of of them for Quality Control Technicians. But it seems to me they’re going to need a heck of a lot more than a few new technicians to clean things up. They need to overhaul their entire company and learn to walk the talk they display so proudly on their website:

All of us take pride in our work, our departments and our company as a whole. Pride that manifests itself in uncompromising product quality and unsurpassed customer service. Pride that helps our company overcome any short-term obstacles and achieve long-term success.

If the observations made by the FDA inspectors represent Diamond’s “uncompromising product quality,” Diamond needs to take a serious look at how they’re doing things. From what’s in the report, it sounds like there’s plenty of room for improvement. And, I suppose the people and pets who have become sick due to their sloppiness are simply a “short-term obstacle.”

{ 71 comments… read them below or add one }

Sabra & Endless SD May 16, 2012 at 1:32 am

For Christ’s Sake! I remember nearly 30 years ago when this was a good food. WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED? Maybe I need to go back to school to learn to be a quality control specialist for Diamond. I started out loving them because it was the ONLY food my first female Giant Schnauzer would eat, and all of my dogs looked great on it. Diamond, you have sorely broken my heart.


nycstray May 16, 2012 at 1:12 pm

You don’t need to go back to school to do QC for Diamond. I just read their job posting and I could qualify. I work in design and product development for kids. . . .


Sabra & Endless SD May 16, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I haven’t been in school in 30 years. Most of my work has been in retail. Looks like I wouldn’t qualify as I am disabled and can’t climb ladders or carry 50lb bags anymore. I’m sure I could learn the testing procedures, but even with “reasonable accommodation”, using a Service Dog in an environment where I needed to be around moving machinery like that just wouldn’t work. I just want to see Diamond get better. I used to love them and recommend them to the customers at the pet sore I worked in.


Sue Stack May 16, 2012 at 4:27 am

Therese, I can always count on you for the latest information. Thank you so much!


Millie May 16, 2012 at 7:00 am

I hate to see blogs like this. You should have a link to the entire report. This demonization of Diamond, well, yeah, their plant wasn’t clean, basically. (Neither is my kitchen. 🙂 However, do remember that the big boys of dog food, such as Purina, and the well respected ones such as Canadae and Natural Balance have their foods made there. And you can be sure they “inspected” the plant, too. So let’s not just destroy Diamond.
As far as animal fat, it is exactly that, fat from several sources. There is not a dog food in the country that I know of that still uses euthanized pets for this source or for the “meat meal”. The ingredients are right on the package for anyone to read. Most don’t and I can tell you that so many don’t care. I have people walk in my store every day and head right for the 17.99 Purina Red Flannel food. When I suggest that their litter of puppies might benefit from maybe just a little bit more quality food and show them one (Diamond is one) for 30.00 a bag, they say “no, this one will do” and buy the cheap food… So long as people are stupid, there isn’t much you can do but suggest.
I have fed Diamond for years and never had any problems, multiple dogs in a boarding kennel and my own pack. We won plenty at dog show. Science Diet is of the poorest quality, filled with corn. I have it in the store because little old ladies buy it on the advice of their vets. And we all know that story. But I never, ever recommend it and it’s moved to the back of the store. I’d like to drop it but it still sells. So I try to educate people, usually just showing them the ingredients is all that it takes.
I realize this blog probably thrives on sensationalism but really, could you tone it down a bit, report the facts without the rhetoric and give a link to the report so people can read it themselves? THAT’S good reporting, although it seems to have gone by the wayside in recent years. Just be fair.
BTW, I don’t work for Diamond, I do manage a pet supply store. Although I am dropping two lines of the product, it is more because I had all five and when we experienced a shortage of food, I had to bring in some other good lines, fast. I think there was some lousy management and some lax technicians that were trusted to do their jobs, didn’t, and management thought “it will be ok”. I have talked to Diamond, even sending in a sample of food that we were suspicious of. They have been polite, accomodating and trying really hard to satisfy everyone that I have talked to as well as in my own case.
Last year, USDA announced that there would be more inspections. They want to inspect every dog food manufacturer out there. There are going to be more failures in this industry. Most dog food companies have had a recall of some sort thru the years. If they haven’t, they will. It’s just the nature of the business….


Therese May 16, 2012 at 7:57 am

Well actually, I do have a link to the entire report. It’s in the very first sentence. It was there when I first posted it, but I just now bolded it so people who skim past it, like you apparently did, might see it easier.

If what I have to say bothers you, there’s no reason why you should have to read it. It might be easier for you to just go to the FDA list of recalls so that you can get the facts and nothing but the facts. It sounds like you think recalls aren’t all that big of a deal anyway. To me they are a big deal though. I know way too many people who have lost cats and dogs due to tainted pet food or who have pets dealing with lifelong illnesses due to bad food. So, bottom line, I’ll keep reporting on pet food recalls and pet food company issues, and that will include stating my opinion.


Lazaro May 16, 2012 at 7:46 pm

Thanks for posting Therese, I feed my dog Natural Balance, but, his formula was not on the recall list thank god. I’m very happy you posted the FDA report. As dog/cat owners, its important to be advised when such carelessness, lack of cleanliness and lack of important protocols happen in a dog food factory. Makes me wonder what Natural Balance will do when and if they saw and read this report. Time to send them an e-mail. Again, Thank you Therese.


Millie June 29, 2012 at 9:49 am

I see it now, thank you. I don’t think my post was out of line at all. Just reporting what I know as facts. But apparently this is like religion and politics, it’s hard to discuss without getting hot under the collar. I reread my post, I don’t think I said anything about people deserving to have a sick dog, etc. I only wanted to report what I had seen on the other side of the counter. Please don’t start assuming that I don’t care about dogs or that I think anyone is stupid. I only wanted to offer another perspective, usually you find the truth when all the reports from people are in. If you chase off someone like me by being rude to me, then you miss some very important information. I was only trying to help with that. Enough said.


Sue Stack June 29, 2012 at 10:42 am

Why in the world would you come back 6 weeks later and defend your post?


PAUX June 30, 2012 at 4:52 am

You posted in your first comments “you can be sure that they (Natural Balance +) Inspected the plant”. This would make then complicit in the resulting sick and dead animals and all the cost associated. If they “inspected”, they would be aware of the deplorable conditions…makes one think that it is their bottom line $ that is more important to them than our pets health, our pocketbook and our emotional involvement. Money is more important to them and maybe it is the same for you as a merchandizer of these products. I don’t know what important information that you imparted, it seemed that you were giving excuses for the manufacturers.


kb May 16, 2012 at 8:47 am

Are you kidding me? It’s not a big deal? Do you want to tell that to the people in the hospital? Or all the people with sick pets? I expect a company that tells you they have high tech quality control and 151 checks to attempt to live up to that. Basic sanitation was not observed. And the companies that subcontracted to them are culpable for failing to inspect or for tolerating the conditions. Mistakes will be made (this was not a mistake, it’s willful neglect and profit over integrity) but how a company responds tells you everything you need to know about them. Slow recalls, denials of problems, failure to disclose, saying a food is safe and then recalling it a week later, those are all signs they cannot be trusted. Diamond kept saying they didn’t find any salmonella – of course not, they wern’t even testing for it.
This is not the nature of the business. Because many of us will not accept that.


Sue Stack May 16, 2012 at 11:38 am

“Could you tone it down a bit”. Millie, you’re lucky I don’t shop at your store because I would slap you. All of my dogs got sick and I lost one because if this recall. As an owner of a pet supply store, you should consider your customer’s pets well being and not your wallet. Thank God for dumb people because we all can’t be smart. I agree with Therese, if you don’t like what she writes, don’t read her blogs. You opinion makes you look like an idiot and a jerk!!!!


Linda May 16, 2012 at 1:02 pm

Sorry Millie, Purina has their own plants and make their own foods. Get your facts straight before you write.


byrd May 17, 2012 at 11:43 am

SORRY L.I.N.D.A…….but u are very wrong! I am unsure about DOG feed, but their HORSE feed mill in SC had a HUGE issue not too long ago (maybe a few years). Also, Sun Dog Cat Moon just posted that PURINA has a recall now also, might not be as big, but it does exist! …..Just so yah know.. maybe you should take your own advise 😉 None of these mills are perfect! Unless you make it yourself, it’s a chance you take…


Millie June 29, 2012 at 9:43 am

Yes, they do have their own plants. And the Diamond salesman told me they also manufacture Natural Balance (which has now moved out to their new plant), Purina and several others. I do have my fact straight. A little politeness goes a long way an in a heated discussion. Please call Diamond to verify if you don’t believe me but ask them if they were making their foods because Purina has pulled out in the last 60 days or so.


PAUX May 21, 2012 at 5:02 am

The link was present. Apparently, if the other companies that use Diamond inspected this factory, why would they continue to have them manufacture their product? This makes those brands culpable for the illnesses and deaths of pets also. This company had over three weeks to clean up the plant, this was the period between them being notified of the salmonella and their investigation. I can understand your concern, if people go to making their own food for their pets it will undermine your bottom line also. This is lives we are talking about, these were suppose to be quality foods….My dog died due to eating the Natural Balance “quality” food. I now make my own and will never buy kibble again. So you consider truth as sensationalism, now I find that sick.


kb May 16, 2012 at 7:24 am

“no microbiological analysis”
Wow. That would mean no testing for salmonella, e.coli, etc. So much for the 151 checks, high tech quality control, blah blah.
I’m sure Diamond and the companies that subcontract to them will have some really great explanations for a filthy manufacturing plant and no testing and will assure us all the product is safe to feed.


lorrie brewster May 16, 2012 at 8:50 am

My 13 year old lab was on a Diamond Lamb and Rice food her entire life. She suddenly lost her appetite this March. It started with her not eating all of her food, then none of her food. Then she wouldn’t eat her treats, or any other brand of dog food. Then she started vomiting and had diarrhea within two weeks starting a new bag of food. Blood tests were normal. Ultra sound showed ulceration in her stomach. She died two weeks later, couldn’t even tolerate homemade chicken and rice. She was so weak and shaking uncontrollably we had to put her to sleep. There are other reports of dogs on this food that have died with very similar symptoms. The first thing our vet pointed to was to her diet, yet at that time, the recall had not be publicized. I take large offense to those who think making people aware of a recall is “demonizing’ the company. Yes, my lab was older, but was in overall good health and no one will ever convince me that the food she was eating did not play a part in her accelerated death. So dear Millie, please bear with those of us who have lost a pet or for the humans who have become ill as a result of this food. Diamond has had a number of recalls over the past 10 years, none of which I was aware of until now. I will NEVER use Diamond products again.


DS May 23, 2012 at 1:22 pm

Lorrie I’m so sorry you lost your pup 🙁
Same thing happened to my 2 year old APBT. He was vomiting and had diarrhea for several weeks and suddenly refused to eat his food and the vet absolutely could NOT figure out what was wrong. This was also before the recall came out (We were feeding Canidae). The instant we switched his diet over to chicken and rice he got better. And thankfully he’s all better now that we’ve switched his food.

I’m really disappointed in what went down with Diamond, I know recalls happen all the time, but when I’m paying $65 for a bag of food I expect it to be decent. Clearly I learned the hard way, and my dog paid the price.


PAUX May 24, 2012 at 3:08 am

It is not just Diamond, it is all the name brands that use this sub manufacturer for their product. All those brands that tout how healthy their product is, the ones that have on their label made in the U.S. while adding ingredients from China, for all those companies that state they have “151” lab tests on their product, but use a filthy, contaminated plant for the production of their product. Make a list of these other companies, and do not use in the future…they are only in it for the $$.


patricia a ringsdorf May 16, 2012 at 9:21 am

It’s all about money.$$$. And it is obvious who is in it for $ in the letters & who isn’t. …I will never feed TOW again. I spend my $ because I love my furkids,& I expect to get what I pay for, not something that will kill them. I am so sorry for all those who have been hurt by those who simply don’t care to sell us the good food that we pay for. Even the cheap food shouldn’t kill .

Mad Mama


Lesliek May 16, 2012 at 9:30 am

I personally know 2 independent pet food store owners & they are so disgusted with the way Diamond has handled this that they are dropping all their products. Sloppy manufacturing, not testing for known problems in their ingredients & poor handling of the recall are not good business practices. You wouldn’t buy food for yourself from a company like this, why feed it to your pets ?


Maureen May 16, 2012 at 4:19 pm

I ended up with a big bag of the recall food and i have never had a problem with their food before then and my cats love the food and i thought it was the healthiest food out there now but why the hell cant they keep the place clean and do what they are supposed to be doing at their plants.So if they do not tell the truth about their plants are they telling the truth about how good and healthy their pet foods are. I will need lots of feedback from others using this food and will base my decision on those whether i continue to feed it to my cats.


DoggyMama May 16, 2012 at 5:17 pm

Glad to had seen this post as I have been feeding my dogs Diamond dog food recommended by their vet. I won’t be buying it anymore for them though. So what is a trustworthy dog food??


patricia a ringsdorf May 16, 2012 at 5:40 pm

I will NEVER buy TOW again,this is not the first time thay have had recalls,just went back & checked it out. We really do need to figure out ‘who can we trust?’ Not anyone who buys ingredients from China,& some of the companies who claim they r american made only,still order from there & other places but put it together here. I dunno.


BabyGirl May 16, 2012 at 5:44 pm

What I want to know is..WHY is this only NOW coming to light? I’m sorry, but those of us in the ferret community have known about the recall since the end of last month/beginning of this month. BEFORE it even hit the news..BEFORE it made blogs..BEFORE any of that, it was known and everyone who fed their animals anyone of the Blue Diamond products, promptly took their animals off it, disposed of it and let the news out about the recall.
Millie, can I ask something..ARE YOU INSANE? The recall has been around for nearly a MONTH! Get the facts straight, don’t just read this lady’s blog, go and check the news reports, the official site, ANYTHING. Every major dog/cat food brand has listed on their front page, WE DO NO USE BLUE DIAMOND OR IT’S SUBSIDIARIES. I wonder why that is? Hmmm, let’s think, shall we? Because it’s BAD! That’s why! There are plenty of animals lovers, such as myself, who use mixes, such as cat, and occasionally dog food, in our own personal pet’s food, not because it’s cheaper, but for a wider range of flavors and protein ratio. Think on that, before you go chewing out a person for posting something on her PERSONAL blog about something she probably researched better than you did!


Leanne May 16, 2012 at 8:30 pm

Correction to the above. It’s not Blue Diamond. It’s Diamond pet foods.


Leanne May 18, 2012 at 9:36 am

The reason I say this is most people get confused with Blue Buffalo (because it has a blue diamond) and Diamond pet foods. It happens all the time in Petsmart.


Mr. Reality Check Please May 16, 2012 at 7:15 pm

Wow; interesting read. Lorrie, I am so sorry for your loss. We shouldn’t have to worry about buying something over the counter for our pets and worry about them dying. What concerns me is how many others share your pain?

Looks like Millie has had a good whoopin’ and well deserved. She is either mentally unstable or a plant from another pet food company and needs to get fired for not posting a competent observation. Millie, you obviously have read the piece on Truth About Pet Food, since your comments reference back to issue’s that Susan has posted that Therese did not address. So you came here to vent. Ugh – cheap shot.

If you read back through the blogs, sensationalism is the last thing this site is about. Just sad that the recalls have been dealt with so poorly and so many have had to suffer, wondering “What the heck!?” only to find out weeks, months later that the dog food was the issue.

Millie, showing them the ingredients is all it takes to educate people about pet food? Do you know how many grades of rice there are? Do you know what country ingredients are sourced from? Do you know what quality of supplementation is being used?……by reading a label of ingredients? Get a grip.

Wake up folks. Don’t hang by online comments to figure out whether you will feed a product. Use your pocketbook to vote NO to badly run facilities and animals/people getting sick. Why support any company or brand that doesn’t do due diligence? If you continue to buy from them…..well that is what they are banking on……time will pass and you’ll be back. Remember 2007 and the resolve we had? They are greedy and want your money – you are hurting financially and want a good deal. Think about it and look at the big picture. Is a food affordable if that brand will rake up veterinarian bills in a few years?

Anyone can portray things and play cloak ‘n dagger online. You don’t think that pet food companies have social media folks on forums blending in as a concerned pet parent? I don’t know that they do, but the more I learn the more I wonder about such things. I’m just wanting to be a voice of reason and not judge and ask you to do some critical thinking about things. Don’t even let me get started about the demise of the field of veterinary medicine.

Therese my hat is off to you; your blog keeps me up to date with reliable information. I guess Millie is right – as long as people are stupid, there isn’t much you can do but suggest. It’s about the only sensible thing she said.

Job well done Therese – this guy will keep reading.


PAUX May 24, 2012 at 3:15 am

You are right, the big comapanies pay more for advertizing, merchandizing and they all do have an IP dept. to push the positive of their product on line. I wish they would spend that money for quality of their product and cared about the health and life of our fuzzy friends…they don’t.


Mike May 16, 2012 at 8:20 pm

Good write up. I get tempted to dump my bags of TOW but like you said every manufacturing plant/ company will experience something to warrant a recall action. My bags of dog food come from a different plant so I can rest easier for now. Diamond foods have to be better then Walmart bargain basement pet foods. Quality of ingredients still count for a lot. Mike


PAUX May 21, 2012 at 5:11 am

There has now (5-18-2012) been a recall at diamonds Meta, Missouri plant, right now it is for a diamond brand, but what kind of rolling recall will there be for this plant also.TOW is made in all three of diamonds plants, so I would be a little more cautious and would not “rest easy”.


aussiedawgz May 21, 2012 at 11:06 pm

I used to feed TOW to my aussie until she recently became ill. My vet treated for a possible ulcer and she seems fine. I had just opened a new bag, but I don’t know if its recalled. For now, I’m using a variety from Science Diet, one of the grain-free because of her allergies. Is there a way to read the code to find out which plant manufactured a particular bag? I know the code didn’t fall in the S.C. recall. Before I just throw it out, I want to be sure.


lorrie brewster June 29, 2012 at 11:00 am

wow… i really hope you can rest easy while you put your pets at risk by continuing to feed them diamond brand food.. regardless of what plant it came from. God God, man, have more respect for your animal than that. It is so hurtful to read your post to those of us who watched our beloved pets die or get very ill because of this issue. I was a loyal diamond brand user for 13 years…. and now my pet is gone, because of tainted food. There are good stable brands out there. Diamond is not one of them……. please don’t belittle us by defending them.


casey May 16, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Hi everyone. I feed my boxer ( he is the absolute love of my life!!!) Taste of the wild. I did a ton of research when I got Remy as a puppy and this seemed to be a great food. He just turned two and has been in excellent health his whole life (he does have a very slight heart murmur so I have the vet check him every six months just to be careful). His food was not one of the recalled bags. Do I need to be concerned about the brand now?? He has been healthy with great skin for his entire life once I put him on this food and I dont want to change if I dont have to but of course I will do whatever it takes to keep him safe!! What are your thoughts???


MaryAnn May 17, 2012 at 2:32 pm

You sound a LOT like me. My BC mix just turned two as well and I have fed her TOTW on advice of a lot of knowledgable people and my own research, my husband and I just adore her and want to do the best for her. She has done great on TOTW, shiny coat, perfect weight, lots of energy for agility and ball chasing, but I started worrying about what might come out next? The bags of food we had were not part of the bad lot, but what if there’s a next time? I decided to switch our dog to Fromm, at least for now, and she seems to just love it. The main reason I chose Fromm was the dramatic health improvement my Mom’s elderly dog has shown since she started eating it, so I already had a positive personal experience with a dog eating it.

I can’t tell anyone else what to do, and I don’t have a lot of experience as a dog owner, but you sounded so much like me in your post I had to respond. I have been told that TOTW also has its food made in a plant in MO, and that food from there is ok. One store in my town buys exclusively from that store, from what I’ve been told. If you continue with TOTW maybe you could find out which plant your local stores get their shipments from?


PAUX May 24, 2012 at 3:22 am

Cook for him. It is easier than one would think, at least you know what is put into it. Also it will be cheaper in the long run, no taxes on food, less vet care for problems caused by contaminated processed food. I make a pot of food for the week for an 80lb dog. I add salmon oil and puliverized egg shell for calcium. Get a cook book for pets. Your brand is a Diamond brand, do you think they care when they allow their plants to be so bad?


kb May 16, 2012 at 9:52 pm

Interesting how any posts about the recall or the FDA report just disappear from Costco’s facebook page.


Susanne May 16, 2012 at 10:01 pm

The best food overall is homemade and raw…That way you know what is in it and all the ingredients. If we take the time to feed our family right, we should have and make the time to feed our other family member but not everyone has the time so they go to a quick fix which over all leads to obesity, cancer, allergies etc. etc. etc… If we educate ourselves in pet nutrition we would have less vet bills and a healthier pet.


Mary May 17, 2012 at 7:25 am

Susanne you are right. I feed my dog raw food. I read this stuff and it just keeps me going with the raw feeding. So i have no worries on making my dog sick. I feed them what i would eat. I want the best for my dogs and i dont want to take any chances.


Amy Lynn May 17, 2012 at 9:09 am

I have fed Taste of the Wild for many years now and never had an issue. It is part of my rotation and my dogs have always enjoyed it. I buy my food in bulk and currently have 3 bags in my house that are not opened. I do intend to feed them, they were purchased before any recall issues and my understanding is, that wasn’t effected. Also they did not come from the plant with the recall.

After these bags are gone however, I doubt I will buy any more for awhile. I did hear that Purina and other plants have had recalls in the past. I am sure it is far more common then most people think. Working with such huge quantities of food, there are going to be issues from time to time, as there are in human food plants. Some of the things on the FDA inspection report however, are inexcusable. No sinks for employees to wash their hands? Duck tape? Seriously? Come on folks, changes need to happen. Also, I am not happy about any outsourcing for ingredients from China.

I will likely stick with Fromm, Merrick’s and Earthborn Holistic foods for some time which are also in my rotation and my dogs do well on them too. Sad, as I did enjoy the Taste of the Wild and did recommend it to many many people as it was a good food for the money.


tessa May 17, 2012 at 9:35 am

I bought call of the wild and 4Health. both are NOt CHEAP . money spent on dog food doesn’t mean quality obviously. Diamond says if fecals are done all dogs will have some salmonella in their system. Diamond says these two dog foods pulled because they wanted to Make Sure and were being protective of customer. my dogs have been sick and with diarreah/vomiting at first intermittently for about a month. they are not dehydrated so I am not going to vet them at this time. just switched feeds and will not accept a coupon for another bag of either of these products. I will choose with my pocketbook. I feel sorry for those who got sick handling the dog food, and diamonds says NO Dogs got sick. having read this forum, I can see that isn’t the case. so thanks for posting. recall history shows almost all the dog food manufacturers having a recall at sometime. this narrows the choices. I don’t do raw, because I travel. its not fed at any of the boarding kennels around here. so its out. but I did speak with both diamond rep and then a vet from them returned my call yesterday. so those words are from the horses mouth.


tessa May 17, 2012 at 9:44 am

and to BabyGirl, some of us love our pets, treat them kindly, try to do the best for them but we don’t have time to ferret out this kind of news. we have parents to care for and children, jobs and a life. so don’t be so cruel. we can’t follow subsidaries. I found out about the recall on cnbc.com because i have to make a living reading business headlines. it was first noted there. sorry but I have to let some things ride in life. and I lost two dogs to the melamine issue years ago. I know it hurts. But there is another side of life. a 24/7 where real people are trying to just keep food on the table. we’re known as the 99.


Chris May 17, 2012 at 6:12 pm

I mind that I’m paying more for ‘quality’ food…and actually getting low quality. Even worse than low quality…contaminated!! Diamond Pet Foods, that’s just not cool. You’ve duped me.
Btw, I don’t agree with all the nastiness in the comments here. A little charity folks. You lose much respect.


Sue Stack May 18, 2012 at 1:36 am

I don’t care about losing anyones respect. I lost a dog to this recall. My furry sole mate. Do you care? If you are dumb enough to defend the food that killed someone’s pet, you deserve to be bashed with nasty comments.


Mr. Reality Check Please May 17, 2012 at 7:48 pm

Comment to Chris about a little charity. Your dog or cat is alive. There are dogs and cats that are dead leaving behind broken hearts. That is beyond just not cool or duping. It’s called murder. You wouldn’t be nasty if someone murdered your pet?

The protocol steps that were messed up are basics, Making Pet Food For Dummies type of things.

Food = Life = Sacred

Anyone not watching the basics when it comes to life or death for a pet KNOWS the potential of death in this industry. It’s reckless; it’s unconscionable; it’s murder.


Michelle May 18, 2012 at 9:05 am

This is a very disappointing finding with diamond pet food. I’ve struggled to find the food that best find my dog, from loose stool to skin issues. Diamond was my problem solver.
But after this finding I’ve had to research a new food that’s suitable for my pet and will fit his needs. I’ve gradually switched to eagle pack lamb and rice. So far my dog is doing well on it, stool is normal and skin/coat is normal.

Let’s hope eagle pack is my will fit my dog.


Mike May 18, 2012 at 10:27 am

Have pets died connected to This recall.? I haven’t heard of any being reported. Mike


Sue Stack May 18, 2012 at 11:29 am

Yes, many have died and hundreds have gotten sick. Diamond is covering this up and lying to the public. They DON’T care about your pet, they only care about their WALLET. That’s why people should switch to a brand not manufactured at that plant. You’ll hurt them where it counts. The bottom line. Just read Therese’s past blogs about the Diamond Recall Roll Out.


Mike May 18, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Previous recalls were spurred by pet deaths (2006, 2008) No pet deaths involved in this recall.

Investigation of Multistate Outbreak of Human Salmonella Infantis Infections Linked to Dry Dog Food
May 11, 2012

On this page:

Recall Information
Case Count – Updated May 11, 2012
Advice to Consumers
Additional Resources


The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been collaborating with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and state and local officials to investigate a multi-state outbreak of Salmonella Infantis infections. FDA became involved in early April when the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development reported detecting Salmonella from an intact package of Diamond Naturals Lamb and Rice Formula for Adult Dogs, collected during retail surveillance sampling. Diamond Pet Food was notified of the sampling results, and agreed to voluntarily recall this product on April 6, 2012. See Firm Recall Press Release: Diamond Pet Foods Voluntarily Recalls Limited Number of Dry Dog Food Bags Due to a Potential Health Risk1 for more information. At that time, there were no known dog illnesses reported.

An additional finding of Salmonella in a sample taken by the Ohio Department of Agriculture, from an opened bag of Diamond Brand Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul Adult Light Formula dry dog food collected from the home of an ill person, and an unopened bag of the product collected from a retail store led to a recall of that product on April 26, 2012. See Firm Recall Press Release: Diamond Pet Foods Expands Voluntary Recall of One Production Run of Dry Dog Food Due to a Potential Health Risk2 for more information.

A sample of Diamond Puppy Formula dry dog food collected by FDA during an inspection at the South Carolina production facility also yielded Salmonella Infantis, which led to a recall of that product on April 30, 2012. See Firm Recall Press Release: Diamond Pet Foods Expands Voluntary Recall to Include Diamond Puppy Formula due to Possible Salmonella Contamination3 for more information.

Public health officials used DNA “fingerprints” of Salmonella bacteria obtained through diagnostic testing with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, or PFGE, to investigate cases of human illness. CDC reports that this outbreak strain (Infantis) is rare, and typically only 0 to 3 cases are reported per month to PulseNet4.

Through interviews by state public health officials, FDA’s review of consumer complaints, and from a comparison of pet products from human exposure, some brands of dry pet food produced by Diamond Pets Foods at a single manufacturing facility in South Carolina have now been linked to human Salmonella infections.

FDA, CDC, and state investigations are ongoing in an effort to determine if other brands of dry dog food produced at the South Carolina facility may be linked to confirmed human illnesses. FDA will provide updates on the investigation as new information becomes available.

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Recall Information

May 9, 2012
Diamond Pet Foods has expanded its recall of some brands of dry dog and cat food manufactured in its Gaston, South Carolina facility between December 9, 2011 and April 7, 2012 because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.

The FDA, CDC and state and local officials are collaborating to investigate cases of human illness linked to some brands of dry pet food produced by Diamond Pet Foods at the South Carolina facility.

Consumers should check the company’s website, Diamond Pet Foods Recall Information5 , for information on how to read lot codes and “best by” dates involved in the recall, as well as specific states where the following products were distributed:

Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul

Country Value


Diamond Naturals

Premium Edge



Taste of the Wild

Apex (distributed only in the state of South Carolina)

Kirkland Signature

Kirkland Signature Nature’s Domain


Several other companies with products manufactured at the Gaston, S.C. facility have issued voluntary recalls, since some of their products were produced at the Gaston facility during the time frame of the recalls and have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. Those companies include:

Dick Van Patten’s Natural Balance6
Apex Pet Foods7
Canidae8, Wellpet LLC9
Solid Gold Health Products for Pets10
Diamond Pet Foods continues to work directly with distributors and retailers where the recalled products are carried to remove them as quickly as possible from the marketplace. FDA will provide updates on the recall and the investigation as new information becomes available. Complete information on the recalled products, including photos, lot numbers, and distribution information on each is located at Diamond Pet Foods Recall Information11 .

May 3, 2012
Since their initial recall on April 6, 2012, Diamond Pet Foods has voluntarily expanded that recall to include three of their dry dog food products. Diamond Pet Foods is cooperating with FDA and with state and local public health and agricultural officials in this ongoing investigation.

The recalled products were distributed in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia.

The company is working directly with distributors and retailers that carry these products to remove them as quickly as possible from the marketplace.

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Case Count

May 11, 2012
According to CDC reports12, a total of 15 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Infantis have been reported from 9 states. The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Alabama (1), Connecticut (1), Michigan (1), Missouri (3), North Carolina (3), New Jersey (1), Ohio (2), Pennsylvania (2), and Virginia (1). One new ill person was reported from Pennsylvania. Additionally, one ill person has been reported from Canada .1314

Among persons for whom information is available, illnesses began between October 8, 2011 and April 16, 2012. Ill persons range in age from less than one year old to 82 years old and the median age is 47 years. Seventy-three percent of patients are female. Among the 10 patients with available information, 5 (50%) were hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

Illnesses that occurred after April 13, 2012 might not yet be reported due to the time it takes between when a person becomes ill and when the illness is reported.

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Advice to Consumers
Consumers should check their homes for recalled dog food products. Do not feed recalled products to your pet and do not handle the pet food. Follow the tips listed at FDA’s Safe Handling Tips for Pet Foods and Treats15.

Pet owners who are unsure if the product they purchased is included in the recall, or who would like a replacement product or a refund, may contact Diamond Pet Foods at 800-442-0402, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST, Monday through Friday, or visit Diamond Pet Foods Recall Information16 .

Pets with Salmonella infections may be lethargic and have diarrhea or bloody diarrhea, fever, and vomiting. Some pets will have only decreased appetite, fever, and abdominal pain. Well animals can be carriers and infect other animals or humans. If your pet has consumed the recalled product and has these symptoms, please contact your veterinarian.

People who think they might have become ill after contact with dry pet food or with an animal that has eaten recalled dry pet food should consult their health care provider. Infants, older adults and those with impaired immune systems are more likely than others to develop severe illness.

Veterinarians and consumers alike should report cases of animal illness associated with pet foods to the FDA Consumer Complaint Coordinator17 in their state, or electronically through the Safety Reporting Portal18.

Additional Resources
How to Report a Pet Food Complaint19

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Sue Stack May 18, 2012 at 2:16 pm

It’s OK Mike. You are one of the stubborn people that it if doesn’t effect you, you won’t believe it. And you want to argue a point that you have no first hand knowledge. God love the stupid people. I feel like Einstein.


Sue Stack May 18, 2012 at 2:18 pm

Oh are you and Mike Sagman related or the same person?

patricia a ringsdorf May 21, 2012 at 11:30 am

Shut up
‘mike’. it is so obvious what u r….go elsewhere & spew ur garbage,no one is buying it here. GO AWAY!


Robert May 19, 2012 at 11:24 am
kb May 19, 2012 at 5:30 pm

FDA officially confirms pets are affected by this recall:
Two dogs can be added to the list of clinically confirmed infections in the Diamond Pet Foods Salmonella Infantis outbreak, according to FDA’s Laura Alvey, Deputy Director, Communications Staff at the agency’s Center for Veterinary Medicine.


PAUX May 21, 2012 at 5:26 am

They do not track the deaths of animals. The FDA tracks only human issues. It was because of the thousands of animals that died in 2007, they could not sweep it under the rug, but there have been deaths due to the contamination of our pets foods, and it may not all be due to “salmonella”. Look how long it took to find the cause of the 2007 deaths. The recall in Meta, Missouri shows that they manufactured food but did not package it for up to 2 months. The company had been asked about where this product was stored and they didn’t know. WHAT! They also put on the label as the best by date that corresponded with the packaging date, not the date it was manufactured, thus giving a product that is not fresh and may have been rancid prior to packaging. Oh , my pet died, and he was a healthy, active wonderful creature. Who do you work for?


Sue May 21, 2012 at 10:57 am

I think this is Mike Sagman, owner of the DOG FOOD ADVISOR. He bashed and banned me from his forum when I tried to warn people about the Kirkland dry Lamb and Rice that made all my dogs sick and killed one. He gets kickbacks from the manufactures and sells dog food from his site. He has many manufacturer hacks that actively comment. I reported him on SCAM.com


PAUX May 24, 2012 at 3:25 am

Good on you Sue!


Mr. Reality Check Please May 18, 2012 at 1:13 pm

Can anyone explain something to me? Why would anyone continue to buy products from a company with a track record of killing and sickening people and pets?

If a certain fast food chain had KILLED kids (even once, let alone several times) I would boycott that chain as a matter of principle – no matter how much I liked their french fries or burgers. I would want to send a message that I refuse to financially support anyone who shows such negligence.

Why is anyone still buying food that is from this company or any brands that align themselves with them because they regard their own food as ‘safe’ ? Our money is what keeps them going.

The ranting is understandable, I get the emotional impact. What I don’t understand going forward is how anyone can choose to buy their products and continue to support them financially.

Sincere question looking for an answer.


StillWondering May 18, 2012 at 6:54 pm

Mike, wow! If they lied about all those other things and tried to cover things up, then no way they would lie and cover up reports about sick pets?

You are their dream customer lol.


kb May 21, 2012 at 3:19 pm

Mr. Reality, I don’t get it either. Besides having a filthy plant they have obviously lied on a grand scale. I haven’t used any of their products previously, but I never will now. And I don’t know how Natural Balance, Canidae or Costco can deny knowledge of the plant conditions. I can’t remember if it was NB or Canidae or both who said their post-production testing was negative; then make those test results public. I also don’t know why anybody would continue to say they will keep using the products by them either. I’m sure it doesn’t answer your question but, my sister and I can’t believe anybody would keep using these products and we find it even more incredulous that our brother told me back at the very begining of the recalls that their food is fine (Canidae) and I can stop forwarding him recall info. Part of me wants nothing to happen to his dog or kids and part of me wants him to have a giant vet bill and kids sick at 3 AM.


PAUX May 24, 2012 at 3:36 am

The problem is that this problem is not out to the public as it should, one needs the internet to get info on the issue thus leaving many consumers in the dark. There was a short movie on companion animals food, guess what, it wasn’t allowed to air, so you see the clout that these unscrupulous corporations have. The pet food industry is big business which bank accounts have risen greatly every year…that is why investment bankers have bought up some of the brands. The individual that is using merrick, it is owned by an investment group. Merrick and Castor & Pollux combined in April 2012 and they are owned by Swander Pace Capital, an investor group, hope they love animals more than $ back from their investment.


Mick May 21, 2012 at 11:01 pm

kb, really? Seriously, if your brother’s dog or kids were to get sick, it also puts them at risk for death if they have compromised immune systems. I understand hating pet food companies, but to the point you are wishing ill on others? Its a bit too far, imo.

I know our local shelter uses Kirkland foods for their cats and dogs. My guess is they will continue to use it and why? Its because of the number of animals they have to feed and using Kirkland allowed their money to go further. Whether someone thinks its right or wrong, thats the way it is. Perhaps we ought to be asking why we cant get our government to ensure safe food for humans as well as pets instead of blaming or judging someone for what they feed. If you dont use commercial food, hey thats great, but if you do, it doesnt matter what brand it is, it will probably eventually have problems as well. If it does, should fingers then be pointed at you? And then for those who condemn people for using commercial food, there are lots of people out there that cant make their own, either they cant afford it, or perhaps they are elderly or handicapped but they have pets. Shelters use commercial food, there is no way they could make their own food for the number of pets they have to care for.


Amy Lynn May 24, 2012 at 9:16 am

I couldn’t agree more. There have also been so many recalls on human food over the years. One that sticks out in my mind was the recall on spinach. I love spinach and had to stop buying it during that time but I won’t stop forever.

I am not making excuses for this company but Mick is right. We should be screaming at the government to force these companies to meet clean standards. Our pets (at least mine) are family, not just something I own. I want the best for them. I fed Taste of the Wild for years because it was a 6 star food and supposedly good for my dogs. I had fed Canidae as well though my dogs didn’t care for it as much so I took it out of my rotation. I would love to do all home made food but my schedule wouldn’t allow it. I do some. We should be able to trust these companies and it comes down to much harsher laws and punishments for not meeting those requirements.


Sue May 22, 2012 at 2:15 am

Mick, really? Is Kirkland the only food available to feed the pets at local shelter? For God sakes there’s other brands that are just as inexpensive as Kirkland. Or is this your way to avoid euthanizing pets. Oh, we’ll just kill them slowly with the crap they put in Kirkland and Diamond manufactured pet food. Sad, really sad! I don’t think people on this forum are condemning commercial food, they are condemning food that is known for a fact to make pets sick or kill them!


Mick May 22, 2012 at 2:50 am

Sue, we live in an area that doesnt have access to alot of other foods that come in the size and the price of Kirkland bags. They cant afford to order food. Also, I dont euthanize animals so please stop with the false accusations. I dont work in our shelter but I do donate which is why I know what food they use. I have read of your plight with your dogs and Kirkland and you have my deepest sympathy. I lost a pet to the 2007 recalls so I understand the anger and frustration. However reality says our shelter and many others has to use something. What food do you suggest they use, Im curious? Even foods such as Natures Variety has had recalls for salmonella, then there’s Blue Buffalo for excessive vit D, then there’s Merrick for salmonella, Wysong for mold, Felines Pride for salmonella, Nutro for excess zinc and thiamine deficiency, and on and on and on. See, I keep track of all the recalls, so please, tell me what food you think our shelter should use and can afford? Im not defending Diamond one little bit, what Im trying to say is I believe that all commercial pet food companies are in it for profit, I dont believe they run the tests they say they run, most of them, if they do, run tests after the product has been shipped or put in stores. If the one food a person uses hasnt been recalled yet, it will be for the same reason the other recalls happen, lack of oversight and regulation. But shelter pets have to eat and whether its right or wrong, people will continue to use the foods just as humans continue to use foods that have gone through recalls. Im just saying FDA needs more power for oversight, etc which is what these companies all lobby against…hence Pet Food Institute.


Mick May 22, 2012 at 3:17 am

Sue, I may not have explained myself clearly, I do not mean they are using recalled food. I mean that they will probably continue using Kirkland even though our state so far, has not been affected by the recalls. Whether its right or wrong, I dont know, but I do understand their need to continue using something they can find locally that they can afford. By the way, in your reference to them killing pets slowly, our shelter is a no-kill shelter which means they have alot of unwanted pets that they have to feed. Also, I didnt say all people on this forum condemn commercial food but I have seen some do it in the past. As for me personally? I am using a food that has not been through any recalls….yet, or that I know of after researching. Does that mean they havent had problems that maybe people dont know about? Probably so and I believe that has happened with lots of other foods as well. Didnt this recall with Diamond only begin because of a random check by FDA or another govt agency? As I said before, even companies such as Natures Variety have had recalls that they didnt do a very good job of advertising and yet I still see people using their food and defending the company but then they turn around and criticize someone else for using a different brand that has had a recall in the past.


Lazaro May 23, 2012 at 2:04 pm

Yesterday I finally got a response from Natural Balance about the FDA reports. Tell me, does this sound like there going to leave Diamond Food Manufacturing:

I apologize for my delay in replay as we have been a bit inundated with
emails and phone calls. With that said, I will try answer your questions.

Almost all pet food companies, even those that do own some production
facilities use co-manufacturers. Diamond is one of several
co-manufacturers that Natural Balance partners with across the country.
This means each co-manufacturers produce select formulas, which have been
developed by Natural Balance veterinarians and nutritionists. Diamond uses
the approved formulas and premium quality ingredients that Natural Balance
has developed.

Please know that, Diamond has already made several changes in their
manufacturing processes. One of the most important steps Diamond has taken
is to hire one of the top microbiologists in the country and together they

· Instituted a ³test & hold² program,
· Changed Biological Procedures,
· Improved Environmental Testing,
· Changed Product Testing

We test every lot of our products for 9 known contaminants including
Salmonella under our “Test and Hold” program. This means that product is
held and not released for sale until all the tests for those lots come
back negative. We then enter the data into our website so that our
customer can view the passing results for each and every lot at
http://bwc.naturalbalanceinc.com /.
Please review the video on that page that describes our lab and testing.

I would be happy to discuss this further with you and can be reached at
the toll free number listed below. Or if it is better for you, I can call
you. Just email me with your phone number and best time to contact you.


Sue May 23, 2012 at 9:39 pm

I met two of the Natural Balance Reps at the pet food store where I shopped. This was in March, a couple of weeks after I lost Little B. They assured me they ran so many tests before their product hit the shelves, I didn’t have to worry about their product being contaminated or any recall. They lied throught their teeth. Can’t wait to run into them again so I can verbally lash them with words. I don’t believe anything Natural Balance has to say unless they are willing to make their food at a non-Diamond manutacturing plant. PERIOD!!! Then implement those changes.


PAUX June 29, 2012 at 5:26 am

Millie mentioned “if people would read the labels”; on all these recalled products animal fat nor animal digest is not mentioned on the labels, why would there be vats of it in the plant?


ColoradoSummer July 2, 2012 at 1:16 pm

Where is the report of the inspection of the META plant??

This one came out so quickly – where is the other inspection report???????


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