Company Increases Testing Protocols and Changes Supplier as Added Assurance for Pet Owners
*Updated March 2, 2018 with new information on recall status and additional test results.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – February 23, 2018 – Orrville, OH - The J.M. Smucker Company has identified the sole source of the extremely low levels of pentobarbital in specific shipments of Gravy Train®, Kibbles ‘N Bits®, Ol' Roy®, and Skippy® canned wet dog food and has taken additional steps to further assure the quality and safety of its pet food brands, including testing for pentobarbital across its pet food products.
Testing done by scientists at an independent, third-party microbiology laboratory indicates a single, minor ingredient (animal fat), used only in the four wet dog food brands, was the source of the contamination. A voluntary withdrawal of the affected products has been completed and retailers were advised to remove these shipments from their supply. We are working with the FDA to continue to remove product under the voluntary class III recall process.
"While veterinary experts have confirmed that extremely low levels of pentobarbital do not pose a threat to pet safety, this substance simply should not have been in our products." said Barry Dunaway, President, Pet Food and Pet Snacks. "Its presence at any level is not acceptable and is not up to our quality standards. We stopped production at our manufacturing facility that makes these product lines until we could obtain the ingredient from a new supplier, and we are no longer sourcing the ingredient from the original supplier."
We have received additional lab results from tests of the ingredient in which pentobarbital was found and it confirms the animal fat was sourced from cow, chicken, and pig, which are common sources in pet food. The DNA test ruled out the presence of six other animals: cat, dog, horse, lamb, goat, and turkey.
Smucker announced a new quality assurance protocol as an added assurance for pet families. The Company will test its pet products for the presence of pentobarbital. Although the Company has robust quality assurance procedures in place, it is committed to enhancing sourcing and supplier oversight procedures to help ensure this does not occur again.
"As a Company with a long history of, and a commitment to, providing safe and high-quality products, we felt this was an important extra step to take," said Dunaway. "There is nothing more important than ensuring pet parents can continue to feel confident that they are making the best decision for their pets when they choose our brands. We are a company that loves pets and understands the responsibility we have in providing high-quality food for the pets we, and our consumers, love. We are deeply sorry for the concern this has caused."
No other products of The J.M. Smucker Company were affected by this recall.
Consumers who purchased impacted product can call the Company at 800-828-9980, Monday through Friday 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM EST, or email it at http://www.bigheartpet.com/Contact/ContactUs.aspx with any questions, concerns, or for a refund or replacement product.
Vice President, Corporate Communications