A nationwide class action lawsuit (a complete copy of the press release is here in PDF – 24 kb) has been filed against pet food companies and retailers for misleading consumers regarding the contents of pet food. The lawsuit, filed in Florida, alleges that “premium” pet food marketed and sold as “complete and balanced” has historically contained such items as euthanized dogs and cats, restaurant grease, hair, hooves, diseased animals and other inedible garbage.
The class action lawsuit was filed against Mars Inc., Proctor and Gamble Co., Colgate Palmolive Co., Del Monte Foods Co. and Nestle U.S.A. Inc. The suit also names Nutro Products, Inc., Menu Foods, Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Target Corp, Publix Supermarkets Inc., and Winn Dixie Stores Inc. as manufacturers and marketers of their own brand of pet food, and retailers PETCO Animal Supplies Inc,. Pet Supermarket Inc. and Petsmart Inc. as defendants.
The lawsuit, filed by a cat and dog owner from Michigan and two cat and dog owners from Florida maintains that these companies have spent $300 million a year making false and misleading marketing statements regarding the contents of their pet food.
The lawsuit maintains that the defendants market their pet food products as choice cuts of prime beef, chunks of chicken, fish, fresh wholesome vegetables and whole grains to make consumers buy them. The plaintiffs contend that the food is actually made from “inedible” slaughterhouse waste products of the human food chain such as spines, heads, tails, hooves, hair and blood.