Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Pet Food Politics

Marion Nestle has written what sounds like a fascinating book about last year's pet food contamination. The book, Pet Food Politics: The Chihuahua in the Coal Mine, reveals how the crisis that caused so much illness in pets should be a warning siren for the global food supply. The complex interconnections of our food supply means that we are in no way isolated, and the problems that seemed like just a cat and dog issue could easily effect us. In fact, Nestle mentions that some of the tainted pet food from last year did make its way into the human food supply, being fed to farm animals destined for human consumption.

This could be the 21st Century's version of Upton Sinclair's The Jungle. Even now we read stories about baby formula contaminated with the same substance, melamine, tainting that product. Here at the clinic, one of our suppliers has discontinued a diet based on rabbit because the only consistent supplier with enough quantities is China, and they cannot verify the quality of the meat. We'll be reading it here at the clinic, just to find out more about how globalization changes everything, even your cat.

You can hear Marion Nestle interviewed on the radio program Here and Now at this link:

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I've read the book and it's worth reading. Dr. Nestle traces the history of melamine -- it's been in the food supply since the 1950s or earlier. It's in flour, pasta, fish ponds. It is NOT approved for use in either pet food or human food by the FDA yet there is no one watching these manufacturers and it is still getting into the food system.

The key is eat local, organic and for your meat for your kitties -- know your local farmer!