Pet food company Sunshine Mills has faced lots of controversy in the past few years after several recalls occurred. Since an FDA warning in 2019, they’ve had at least five recalls, several of which involved elevated levels of aflatoxin.
The FDA has given Sunshine Mills plenty of opportunities to address these issues, but they’re still failing to meet some safety requirements. So, in early 2022, the FDA sent them another warning about their many manufacturing violations. This isn’t a recall, but it’s still a situation that pet parents should be wary of.
Why was This Warning Issued?
The warning letter was issued on March 7th, 2022, but it didn’t become public until mid-April. The long, detailed message goes in-depth about the dog food’s many safety violations. FDA inspections occurred at the Red Bay, Alabama, facility several times in 2021. Evidence of violations from the facility’s appearance and food samples lead to this letter being produced.
After the previous recalls, the company failed to incorporate the safety procedures they’d discussed. The warning letter states that the food was still at risk of elevated aflatoxin levels and Salmonella contamination. They also failed to properly clean the surfaces that the food comes into contact with. The lack of cleanliness and potential contamination has been going on for several years with no significant improvements from the company.
Which Products are Affected By the Warning?
Unfortunately, the FDA’s letter doesn’t list the products affected by this recall, so any brands produced by Sunshine Mills could be included. Here are some of the most popular Sunshine Mills brands:
- Nurture Farms
- Veterinary Select
- Paula Deen Home Cookin’
- Meaty Treats
- Sportsman’s Pride
- Hunter’s Special
- Pup Corn Plus
- Pet Life
- Crunchin’ Bones
- Dr. Dental Fresh Chews
It’s also possible that products from other companies are affected. Sunshine Mills sometimes “co-packs” food products with those of other companies. Yet, they haven’t disclosed what products those are.
What Does This Mean for the Company?
In the warning letter, the FDA states that they’ve requested a meeting with Sunshine Mills to discuss the safety plan. The bottom of the letter mentions that the company needs to send the FDA the specific steps they will take to correct violations within 15 business days.
With new safety plans in place, the company should hopefully be able to start producing food safely again. Yet, even though this isn’t a recall, customers should be cautious when buying Sunshine Mills products. If the company keeps failing to fix the safety violations, the products will only become more dangerous for pets.
If you have any concerns about these brands or any other FDA-regulated pet food products, you can report a pet food complaint.
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