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02 September 2010

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Phyllis DeGioia

I've had it with Iams and P&G. Not because of the recalls themselves, but because of the way they've handled it. My geriatric was on one of their therapeutic foods, but in the middle of this recall I switched. My clinic will special order for me. We don't need to put up with them: they clearly learned nothing from the melamine fiasco. I'll take my dollars elsewhere.

Joy

Don't they usually publish the code date in terms of the "best by" date? Anyone know what the best by date is for these bags?

Carol V

I could not find info at the IAMs site and since this is an expansion of a 8/29/10 recall there has been plenty of time for it..I did post Therese's link about the recall on IAMs facebook page--I posted Therese's link about it and said I found it on facebook...maybe I'll do it with this expansion if they haven't...maybe this social media thingy is just too new for these companies to use...(sarcasm)

Carol V

my facebook IAM's page post this am..



"Recall from the 29th has more states involved..I do not understand why IAMs is not posting this info here..It is on facebook posted by pet blogs and forums. No excuse for companies not to use social media to get info to pet owners..since it is used to promote the product.

http://www.petsitusa.com/blog/?p=3550"

Debby

This is really making me mad. I have my 2 cats on this food, but I had purchased the 4 lb. bag, still I don't trust them. It started as 3 bags in Loveland, CO. Now it's several states - will there be another recall tomorrow or the next day? I don't use Facebook and rely on the FDA's web site. What about people who don't do/like Facebook? There is nothing still on Iams web site, and my friend called their CS and they knew nothing!

Carol V

There is still nothing on the IAMs site as far as I can tell and no response on facebook. I do not depend on facebook for recall info BUT it should be there--as I think most of their "followers" (unlike me) are users of the brand so wouldn't you think it just might be a way to reach out to feeders..as I posted somewhere else today..I don't care if it is 3 bags or 3 million bags...we have a right to know...even if we do not feed their product it might just help in future feeding choices...and again..why do not these huge companies who must go thru PR inservices not realize this???

Joy

From what I understand, this product was never included in the list of affected products as part of Iams' bigger salmonella recall.



Still, at some point it had been recalled (but not announced?) for potential salmonella and was pulled from retailer shelves. Then somehow it ended up back on the shelves at a Walmart Supercenter in Loveland, Colorado.



The first announcements stated there were only 3 bags of one date lot sold from this one retail store in this single location.



A few days later, they expanded the recall to around 60 bags in "one or two" retailers in 14 states.

Bev VanZant

I sent the following in an email to Christie yesterday. Gina invited me to post it to this thread:



Thanks for posting our press release of August 31, 2010 on PetConnection. I see that it has generated some comments, and thought you might want to have more information.



As you saw in our release, this recall involved less than 60 bags of one product that were sold by a specific retailer in 10 states. Since this was such a small, targeted recall, and we have retrieved nearly all of the product, we used traditional media to reach our consumers.



Regarding our use of a code date versus a "best by" date: Our goal was to provide the easiest way for our consumers to easily identify the recalled product. In this case, the code date is more specific, as many products can have the same "best by" date and not be affected by the recall.



We continue to listen to folks like your readers to understand what questions are still unanswered and appreciate forums like PetConnection to continue the conversation.

Sandi K

According to this, the reason for the recall is because "Someone released the product before it went through all the checkpoints,"he said. "Unfortunately, this one was just human error."





http://www.walletpop.com/blog/2010/09/03/iams-dry-cat-food-recall-expanded-was-sold-at-walmart/

Joy

Since the 2007 Melamine tragedy, I have been interested in understanding how/why pet food recall information seems to "trickle" in to the public. I'm certainly not picking on Iams; I find most all pet food recalls and their updates and expansions confusing - as far as why the initial information seems to change so rapidly.



With this latest recall, the initial announcement did state that only 3 bags were sold from a single retail location. Then it quickly changed to 60 bags from "one or two" retailers distributed to as many as 14 states (which, has since changed to only 10 states).



Now I read that 20,000 bags of the affected lot were part of the recall but that the company had retrieved all but 476 bags.



Also confusing is the information that, like with the bigger recall, the bags of cat food were recalled for "potential salmonella exposure". But then that changed to the fact that "someone" failed to put the lot of food through some never before mentioned "checkpoint" system.



Surely the pet food companies understand that this trend of "trickle in' recall announcements can cause consumers to not trust the recall information; or that, at best, it can cause misinformation about what is being recalled and where and why.



I'm sure there are no pet food companies that would intentionally keep people in the dark about a potential threat to their pet's health but can any of them explain why its so difficult to get the whole story from the start?



With Iams. Does anyone know if this food was manufactured in the same facility as the others; the facility that Iams announced they closed down a few months ago? Is there a way to know the date and place the cat food was manufactured?



Also, who is the "someone" who failed to put the food through the checkpoint system? I'm not asking the name of the person, just wondering if it was an Iams employee or someone else. How does this checkpoint system work and how did it fail? Could it have been the fault of a vendor or retailer?



How did Walmart end up with so many potentially affected bags on their shelves? Was it neglect on Walmart's part to follow recall procedures or were the bags sent to them by mistake?



And finally, why are these bags of cat food considered potentially exposed to salmonella? Does Iams normally test all of its food for salmonella prior to shipping it out? Is this checkpoint system specific to the closed down manufacturing plant or is it routine for all of Iams facilities?

K.B.

Please note - this is PURE conjecture on my part.



I currently work for a private company doing food safety, and we have monthly scheduled microbial tests (for E. coli, Salmonella and Listeria). These tests are carried out by either myself or the CFIA (Canadian equivalent of USDA) inspector. Everything produced the day of the test is supposed to be on hold (i.e. not shipped to the customer) until the test results are back.



If the same is true for US pet food manufacturers, that means a lot of product is sitting around, waiting for 1-2 weeks until it can be released.



Add to this - many large companies fine suppliers if they cannot meet orders.



So, here you are, the manager of a pet food company, with stock on the floor, and a looming fine for not meeting an order. What do you do?



You keep the product on hold until the test results are in, and pay the fine.



Of course you do.



Because that's the right thing to do. And we all know, pet food (and human food) manufactures always put the best interest of their customers ahead of their own, right?



(I'm not saying this is what happened, but it *can* happen this way. In my own experience, there is NO follow up to check that on-hold products are actually on-hold.)

Carol V

"Traditional media" was used for this recall....poor excuse...alot of pet owners could care less if it is 3 bags of bad product or 300,000....they want to see that a good faith effort is underway to inform the public...and even to the people not using this product but may be considering it in the future...and again I say what has been said so many times---it is not the fact that a recall happens--it is what the company chooses to do with the info and to only use traditional media (whatever is meant by that) in these days seems really sad...it is not like it is a difficult thing to do to post the info at "non-traditional media" social media sites---cripes if I can take the few seconds to post the recall info link---why can't the PFC?

Sandi K

K.B., interesting info regarding food testing. I had read that it might only take 72 hours to get salmonella test results back....I was also thinking with the size of P&G that perhaps they have their own testing capability? I guess Im really wondering whether they are holding product for 1 to 2 weeks but if they are, one would think they are holding with a method/place that wouldnt contribute to salmonella exposure? Anyhow its intriguing information.



I think what bothers me is Iams saying that because they retrieved "nearly all" of the product, they used, traditional media and in my mind, by saying that, they are implying they know it was a less effective way of getting word out. And then I go on to wonder why wouldnt they use as many venues as possible to get word to those 40 to 60 people so they can stop feeding the food to their pet? I can only come up with a guess and that its to lessen the impact of yet another expanded recall on their company. I have to say that, to me, traditional media, would at least include putting it at their website. I mean seriously, I am not an expert in the arena of media but arent websites a gazillion years old? And though Twitter and Facebook may still be considered new to some, it takes how long to put a post a either of those places?



Iams says they are listening but they have obviously read repeated comments here over and over about putting out recall info on websites, twitter, facebook, press releases, what have you. But yet on this expanded recall, I think I have seen only a press release thru FDA? I really think Iams knows how to do it, if they really wanted to. I can only guess that they know full-well what they are doing. But if I was one of those people with a bag of food they were unable to retrieve, I would be upset that they didnt do more to reach me and instead opted for "traditional media" and in the process, almost admitting that they knew it didnt reach as many people.

Donna T.

Has anyone heard of any updates about this? There is something very wrong here. I bought my cat food in Georgia at my local PetSmart. Supposedly, the affected items were only sold in Walmart stores in some western/midwestern states.



I only stumbled upon the press release regarding this recall because my cat was diagnosed with kidney failure last week. I was on the internet looking for any information that might help explain how my perfectly healthy cat could get so sick, and what I found out, in the manner in which I found out, makes me furious. I heard nothing about this recall in the news!



I don't know if salmonella could have caused or contributed to my cat's kidney failure, but since "Someone released the product before it went through all the checkpoints,", to quote Mr. Taylor from Iams, how do we know the food wasn't contaminated with anything else???



I have not yet contacted Iams or PetSmart, since I just became enlightened of this recall today.



My cat is doing much better, now that he's eating different food and getting subcutaneous fluid injections daily. I will post an update as soon as I can get more information.

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