Despite a US Address on the Label, The Country of Origin for Some Ingredients in Your and Your Pet’s Food is Probably China.
Do you eat NutriGrain bars? Sara Lee bread? Do you feed your dog or cat dry or canned food? While the label shows an address in the US, did you know these products contain ingredients sourced from many other countries, including China and India?
In many cases, ingredients sourced from outside the US are used in the final manufacturing of processed food. This last step is done in the US and the food labeled as made in the US, with no reference to the fact that some of the ingredients were obtained from outside the US. This is a problem because the quality of ingredients sourced from some countries is in question. Failure of processed food labels to divulge the source (also called the country of origin) of raw materials is a big issue in the pet and human processed food industries.
A lawsuit was filed on January 7, 2016 against some pet food manufacturers for allegedly mislabeling products as made in the US when ingredients were actually sourced elsewhere. A University of Texas study showed similar issues with processed food made for human consumption.
If you or your pet eat processed foods, beware!
Merrick and Nestle Purina sued over mislabeling Pet Food: In a $5 million class action lawsuit, Merrick Pet Care (doing business as Castor and Pollux Natural Petworks LLC; Pet Appeal One LLC, also known as Castor and Pollux Natural Petworks LLC); Nestle USA; Nestle Purina Petcare; and Does 1-10 are being sued over claims they falsely labeled certain dog and cat foods as being made in the US. (Does 1-10 is a placeholder name used in legal actions for people whose true identity is unknown or must be withheld for legal reasons.) These products allegedly contained vitamin, mineral and amino acid mixes some of whose ingredients were sourced from outside the US. (Western Division of the Northern District of California Case number 2.16-CV-00139-FMO-AS.)
University of Texas Food Studies Project reports the potential source of ingredients for NutriGrain bars and Sara Lee bread: The study found that NutriGrain bars contain ingredients sourced in the US, China (vitamins and minerals), Philippines (Carrageenan), India (guar gum), Europe, Denmark, Italy, and Scotland. A loaf of Sara Lee bread lists an address in Illinois, but the ingredients are sourced from the US, China, Vietnam, India, Australia, Russia, various non-US North and South American countries, Switzerland, Netherlands, and Other European Countries.