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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Inspections, Compliance, Enforcement, and Criminal Investigations

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Enforcement Actions

Dick Van Dam Dairy 5/18/11

  

Department of Health and Human Services' logoDepartment of Health and Human Services

Public Health Service
Food and Drug Administration
 

Los Angeles District
19701 Fairchild
Irvine, California 92612-2506
Telephone (949) 608-2900
Fax  (949) 608-4415

WARNING LETTER

CERTIFIED MAIL
RETURN RECEIPT REQUESTED

W/L 42-11

May 18, 2011 

Dick Van Dam, Owner
Dick Van Dam Dairy
3180 Cottonwood Avenue
San Jacinto, California 92582

Dear Mr. Van Dam:

On March 3 and March 25, 2011, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) conducted an investigation of your dairy operation located at 3180 Cottonwood Avenue, San Jacinto, California. This letter notifies you of the violations of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (the FD&C Act) that we found during our investigation of your operation. You can find the FD&C Act and its associated regulations on the Internet through links on FDA’s web page at www.fda.gov

We found that you offered for sale an animal for slaughter as food that was adulterated. Under section 402(a)(2)(C)(ii) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 342(a)(2)(C)(ii), a food is deemed to be adulterated if it bears or contains a new animal drug that is unsafe under section 512 of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360b. Further, under section 402(a)(4) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 342(a)(4), a food is deemed to be adulterated if it has been held under insanitary conditions whereby it may have been rendered injurious to health.

Specifically, our investigation revealed that on or about January 10, 2011, you sold a dairy cow identified with back tag (b)(4) for slaughter as food. On or about January 10, 2011, (b)(4), slaughtered this animal. United States Department of Agriculture, Food Safety and Inspection Service (USDA/FSIS) analysis of tissue samples collected from this animal identified the presence of 4.94 parts per million (ppm) of flunixin in the liver tissue. FDA has established a tolerance of 0.125 ppm for residues of flunixin in the liver tissue of cattle as codified in Title 21, Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.), 556.286 (21 C.F.R. 556.286). The presence of this drug in edible tissue from this animal in this amount causes the food to be adulterated within the meaning of section 402(a)(2)(C)(ii) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 342(a)(2)(C)(ii).

Our investigation also found that you hold animals under conditions that are so inadequate that medicated animals bearing potentially harmful drug residues are likely to enter the food supply. For example, you failed to maintain treatment records and records identifying animals that you delivered for sale at an auction yard.  Food from animals held under such conditions is adulterated within the meaning of section 402(a)(4) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 342(a)(4).

We also found that you adulterated the new animal drug (b)(4) (flunixin meglumine). Specifically, our investigation revealed that you did not use flunixin meglumine as directed by its approved labeling. Use of this drug in this manner is an extralabel use. See 21 C.F.R. 530.3(a).

The extralabel use of approved animal or human drugs in animals is allowed under the FD&C Act only if the extralabel use complies with sections 512(a)(4) and (5) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360b(a)(4) and (5), and 21 C.F.R. Part 530, including that the use must be by or on the lawful order of a licensed veterinarian within the context of a valid veterinarian/client/patient relationship. 

Our investigation found that you administered flunixin meglumine to a cow identified with back tag (b)(4) without following the route of administration as stated in the approved labeling or any written direction by a licensed veterinarian.  Your extralabel use of flunixin meglumine was not under the supervision of a licensed veterinarian, in violation of 21 C.F.R. 530.11(a) and your extralabel use of flunixin meglumine resulted in an illegal drug residue, in violation of 21 C.F.R. 530.11(d).  Because your use of this drug was not in conformance with its approved labeling and did not comply with 21 C.F.R. Part 530, you caused the drug to be unsafe under section 512(a) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 360b(a), and adulterated within the meaning of section 501(a)(5) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 351(a)(5).

The above is not intended to be an all-inclusive list of violations. As a producer of animals offered for use as food, you are responsible for ensuring that your overall operation and the food you distribute is in compliance with the law.

You should take prompt action to correct the violations described in this letter and to establish procedures to ensure that these violations do not recur.  Failure to do so may result in regulatory action without further notice such as seizure and/or injunction. 

Our investigation also revealed that on or about January 10, 2011, you provided to (b)(4), a signed certification that states that none of the cattle described in the Bill of Sale or Consignment to (b)(4) have an illegal level of drug residues. On or about January 10, 2011, you delivered a cow containing a violative flunixin residue to (b)(4). Providing such a false guaranty is prohibited by section 301(h) of the FD&C Act, 21 U.S.C. § 331(h). You should take appropriate actions to ensure that this violation does not recur.

You should notify this office in writing of the steps you have taken to bring your firm into compliance with the law within fifteen (15) working days of receiving this letter. Your response should include each step that has been taken or will be taken to correct the violations and prevent their recurrence. If corrective action cannot be completed within fifteen (15) working days of receiving this letter, state the reason for the delay and the time frame within which the corrections will be completed. Please include copies of any available documentation demonstrating that corrections have been made.

Your written response should be sent to:

Blake Bevill
Director, Compliance Branch
Food and Drug Administration
Los Angeles District Office
19701 Fairchild
Irvine, CA  92612

If you have any questions about the content of this letter, please contact Mei-Chen (Jessica) Mu, Compliance Officer, at 949-608-4477.

Sincerely yours,

/s/

Alonza E. Cruse
District Director