Thursday, May 17, 2007
Dear Margot, Thank you so much for your support of my efforts in Congress to clean up the food supply. I know how important this issue is to you -- for companion animals and humans alike -- and your strong support is clearly making a difference in Washington. Last week, the Senate passed important legislation to overhaul the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). As part of that bill, the Senate agreed to an amendment I offered to address many of the food safety problems that have become all too apparent over these past few weeks. My amendment will do several important things: Create an early warning system for all food products -- including pet food -- so we can identify potential food contamination problems much earlier and provide accessible product recall lists directly on the FDA website Establish uniform standards, inspection processes, and better labeling of pet food -- replacing today's voluntary guidelines that manufacturers and individual states can choose to ignore Improve the FDA's ability to regulate imported food products -- to deal with problems like the recent contaminated wheat gluten and rice protein shipments from China The new FDA legislation will make a difference -- but equally important is continuing to push the FDA to take their responsibility as guardians of our food supply seriously. That's why I hope you'll invite your friends and family to join you, me, and thousands of other Americans, urging the FDA to step up their vigilance of our food supply -- for companion animals and humans alike. Thank you so much for your continued support on this critical issue! Sincerely, Dick Durbin U.S. Senator Blogmaster notes: When you visit this website and send in your plea, please also contact Mr. Durbin and beg him to ask for stricter labeling and ingredient listing criteria. Currently, a dog food may market itself as a lamb and rice formula even though it's first two ingredients by weight are chicken and corn. Also demand that dog food manufacturers provide exact percentages of protein, grain and other contents, rather than listing ingredients by weight prior to processing. Why? A pound of chicken is considerably less going into processing than a pound of rice, corn or oats. Listing ingredients is important, but I also want to know the total percentage of protein, grain, vegetables and filler in the finished product. This is how I make an informed decision as to what my dog eats. This is why I will not buy commercial dog food. I have no clue what I'm getting.