Hi there – I just love your show and yes I do own both the Cat and Dog “Bibles.” I read them quite often for advice unlike some books where the info is so limited you never refer to it again.
I had no problem switching the cats from ugly carbs to wet food and started using Weruva. I read their website however I am nervous using food made in Thailand. Is there any cat food out there that is made in the ole USA??
Thanks for all your animal love and advice
Well, my dear Marylou and others who want to see how seriously the great Weruva family takes your concerns – look at the depth of information they shared with me immediately. Is it any wonder I love this cat food and this company so much? Good golly, they simply amaze me. Here’s what David Forman, the owner, wrote back:
Thank you for the email to Weruva. As pet owners ourselves, we genuinely appreciate your inquiry. Regarding our choice of Thailand as a place of manufacture, there are several reasons for our decision, yet price was not one of those reasons. As you have noted, our prices are not inexpensive, and the quality control measures under which we operate are reflected in the price.
With that said, we are very fortunate to have our manufacturing partner in Thailand, and we have the deepest trust in their quality control measures. The foundation of this trust was established decades ago by a relationship that my father started with them in the late 1970’s. Our sister company, started by my father, has been producing human food in this facility for years. If you look around the supermarket, you may be surprised to learn that much of the food for people has been produced in Thailand, such as fish and fruit. In fact, the US imports about 80% of its fish with the majority coming from Thai plants. If you eat fish at a restaurant, there is a strong chance that it was caught in Pacific waters and processed in an Asian plant.
Thailand is a huge world leader when it comes to producing food for human consumption around the globe. Our factory is ISO9001 certified, which means it shares a similar “language” to that of other ISO9001 plants around the world. ISO stands for International Organization For Standardization, which essentially means that all certified factories are on the same page and that, for instance, “free range” here means “free range” there
Moreover, the USFDA recognizes the Thai FDA, and our plant is USDA certified. In a nutshell, the US believes that our plant produces foods up to US standards. The FDA has gone in there and completed inspections to their satisfaction. In addition, the strictest human food processing standard is arguably that of the UK, the British Retail Consortium (BRC). Our factory earned an “A” on the BRC standard, making it not only one of the safest places in the world to make pet food, but making it one of the safest places in the world to make human food!
As we learned with the recall, close to 100 brands of pet food were produced in one facility. In contrast, my father’s company has the exclusive contract of all human food entering the US from this facility. We are not just another number in the production line. In fact, his biggest customer, the Subway Sandwich chain, awarded my father’s company as Vendor of the Millennium, which was based upon the quality of products produced for humans in these facilities over the course of 30+ years.
While we would like to think US produced foods are the safest, statistics illustrate that we are unfortunately not the safest when it comes to manufacturing food. For instance, over 100 brands of US produced pet food were recalled last year while no brands experienced a recall from Thailand. In addition, there are currently multiple active recalls on US produced beef, chicken and pork, and that only goes back to May of this year ( www.fsis.usda.gov/fsis_recalls/open_federal_cases/index.asp). In addition, a few months back, Whole Foods had a recall of US produced beef from Coleman, the same company that supplies beef to some US pet food manufacturers (www.iht.com/articles/2008/08/12/business/12food.php). In February of this year, the largest US beef recall in history occurred in California where 143 million pounds of beef were recalled!
As mentioned, Thailand is a world leader when it comes to food production for humans. Also as mentioned, the USFDA recognizes the Thai FDA. This notion carries over to a similar branch in Thailand called the Department of Livestock Development (DLD). The DLD is similar to our USDA. The DLD sets forth certain processing guidelines. On top of being antibiotic free, hormone free and free range, our chicken, for instance, is also DLD certified.
Part of our dog food line produced in the US. While it is made under great safety measures, our food produced in Thailand is done so under far greater scrutiny. Ultimately, our food produced in Thailand would be “safer” than our food produced in the US.
We encourage pet owners to contact manufacturers and inquire about safety measures. We urge them to focus on the company and their processes rather than country of production. If we look around in the news, we do not have to look far to the see recalls occurring in the US with frequency (http://www.fda.gov/opacom/7alerts.html). A few months ago, US based Hartz pet products recalled one of its US produced items for cats because of salmonella. As mentioned, a few months back, the largest beef recall in American history occurred in California. Headlines a few months back indicated that our country’s drinking water contains trace amounts of oodles of prescription drugs!
I hope this has been helpful. Please let us know if you have further questions.
Weruva is a sponsor on Radio Pet Lady Network, by our invitation.