The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) suspects that at least two of the contaminated ingredients used in more than 100 brands of recalled cat and dog food foods may have been intentionally laced with melamine to boost their apparent protein content. Melamine has been found in wheat gluten and rice protein concentrate imported from China.
American Hog Farm in Ceres California was placed under quarantine when melamine was found in pig urine. Testing is under way to see if the chemical is present in meat produced there by the State Department of Food and Agriculture. Officials are urging people who purchased pigs from American Hog Farm since April 3 to not consume the product until further notice.
South African media is reporting that a third pet food ingredient, corn gluten was also laced with melamine, suspected of killing 30 dogs. The FDA says corn gluten has not been found in the U.S.
Stephen Sundlof, the FDA’s chief veterinarian told reporters “Melamine was found in all three of those — it would certainly lend credibility to the theory that it may be intentional. That will be one of the theories we will pursue when we get into the plants in China.”