Animal & Veterinary
Consent Decree Filed in White River Dairy Tissue Residue Case
July 22, 2005
On July 15, 2005, a Consent Decree of Permanent Injunction was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California against Carl M. Sousa, an individual doing business as White River Dairy, Stratford, CA.
Mr. Sousa is a livestock producer who delivered animals for sale for slaughter as human food. This action is based on the numerous illegal drug residues caused by Mr. Sousa, and the poor management practices that have been the primary source of these illegal drug residues.
United States Department of Agriculture/Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA/FSIS) found nine illegal tissue residues in edible tissues of animals from the dairy sampled between February 1, 1999 and December 23, 2003. The drug residues found by USDA/FSIS included antibiotics such as penicillin, gentamicin, tylosin, and sulfadimethoxine that were above the permitted tolerance levels or in some cases where no established tolerance for the new animal drug has been established. FDA is concerned about the sale of animals for slaughter for human food that may contain illegal levels of animal drugs because of their potential for adverse effects on human health. New animal drugs are approved by FDA with strict use requirements, including a specified time period to withdraw an animal from treatment prior to marketing, to assure the drug has depleted from edible tissue to a level that will not present harm to the consuming public.
Under the terms of the Consent Decree, the defendants must implement residue avoidance systems including segregation/quarantine and identification of treated animals, the source of each animal that they purchase or transport, maintaining medication/treatment records, drug inventory/accountability, and must follow label directions for use including drug withdrawal times prior to slaughter.
FDA's San Francisco District conducted the investigation that lead to this Consent Decree. FDA/CVM’s Division of Compliance, FDA’s Office of the Chief Counsel, the United States Department of Justice's Office of Consumer Litigation, and the U.S. Attorney's Office in the Eastern District of California were responsible for processing and filing the case.