FoodFacts.com spends quite a bit of time talking about the health effects linked to a variety of controversial ingredients. We don’t think any of them belong in our food supply and we’re always encouraged when we hear about manufacturers taking steps to remove controversial ingredients from their products. But what about our pets? We’re sure that our community wouldn’t want their furry family members consuming foods with ingredients that are potentially harmful. Now a major dog food manufacturer is being singled out for an exceptionally popular brand and claims of harm and even death from its consumption.
The Nestle Purina pet food company is being sued over ingredients contained in its Beneful product line.
The two ingredients are propylene glycol and mycotoxins.
Propylene glycol is a synthetic liquid compound that absorbs water. It’s also used as a base for deicing solutions – anti-freeze components.
According to the federal Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry: “Propylene glycol is used by the chemical, food, and pharmaceutical industries as an antifreeze when leakage might lead to contact with food. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified propylene glycol as an additive that is ‘generally recognized as safe’ for use in food.”
Mycotoxins are naturally occurring fungi.
Some pet owners allege their dogs got sick after eating Beneful.
Angela Witzel, assistant clinical nutrition professor at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, told 10News that Nestle Purina has a good track record of monitoring the levels of those ingredients. She said she sees little risk to pets in eating the food.
“In general, I feel like this lawsuit doesn’t have much basis to it. I personally wouldn’t have any problem with going ahead and feeding my pets the Beneful product,” Witzel said.
Nestle Purina issued a statement that says in part, “First and foremost, there are no quality issues with Beneful.”
It goes on to say, “We believe the lawsuit is baseless, and we intend to vigorously defend ourselves and our brand.”
The company has faced two similar class action lawsuits in recent years. Both have been dismissed by the courts.
Whatever the outcome of this lawsuit, the claims being made against Purina and Beneful are a good reason for all of us who love and care for our pets to be careful about the foods we choose for our pets. We need to read ingredient lists here too, carefully selecting pet foods with better ingredients that will serve our pets’ nutritional needs and keep them safe.