ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (PRNewswire) — Food Sentry, a global food monitoring service, thinks it understands why the FDA cannot seem to figure out why dogs are getting sick from Chinese-made chicken jerky treats.
"There seems to be something missing," writes Chief Operating Officer and Analyst Scott Witt, "[w]e can find no evidence that the FDA and its contract labs have actually tested the ingredients that go into the chicken jerky treats."
They note that while the FDA has posted over 280 test results, all of the tests have been run on the chicken jerky samples themselves.
Witt, however, thinks that the source of contamination lays further down the food supply chain from the chicken itself.
"In the Beijing/Tianjin/Hebei/Shandong region alone there are more than 350,000 chicken farms that supply chicken product manufacturers in the region. This is relevant because this highly industrialized area is significantly contaminated with dozens of industrial byproducts."
Witt, who previously helped develop a system for the FDA that predicts the likelihood of contamination of imported food, narrowed in on the leather-making industry to illustrate his point.
"One of the dirtiest industries in terms of contamination is the tanning industry. One of the many contaminants in the tanning process is chromium, which leaves a residue on the tanned product. Leather scrap is left over after the manufacturing process and, because it is relatively high in protein, it is often hydrolyzed and sold as a protein feed product."
He specifically identified hexavalent chromium as having the potential to build up in the chickens if they eat the contaminated feed. That toxin could then get passed on to the dogs, which, over time, may potentially get sick and die as a result.
His suggestion is for the FDA to "get to the beginning of the product's life and look deeply."
About Food Sentry
Food Sentry (http://www.foodsentry.org) is a global food monitoring service that provides important and timely information on food product safety from around the world to protect consumers. Their mission it to help consumers make educated choices when selecting their food products.
Food Sentry is unique in that it does not simply share existing information about food safety in the form of news or articles as other currently existing organizations do. Instead, Food Sentry's team of highly trained analysts use open-source intelligence gathering techniques to comb through immense amounts of information from both foreign countries and the United States to identify risks to consumers posed by imported and domestic food.