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  1. FDA In Brief

FDA In Brief: Certain Lots of Sportmix Pet Food Recalled for Potentially Fatal Levels of Aflatoxin

January 11, 2021 Update: Midwestern Pet Foods expanded the recall to include additional products that contain corn and were made in their Oklahoma manufacturing plant. The FDA is now aware of more than 70 pets that have died and more than 80 pets that are sick after eating Sportmix pet food. Not all of these cases have been officially confirmed as aflatoxin poisoning through laboratory testing or veterinary record review. This count is approximate and may not reflect the total number of pets affected.

December 30, 2020

Media Inquiries

  Kim DiFonzo
  240-651-4191

The following quote is attributed to Amber McCoig, D.V.M., M.P.H., deputy director of the FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) Division of Compliance:

“Although this pet food recall is still unfolding, we are sharing the facts we have so far because the levels of aflatoxin found in the recalled pet food are potentially fatal. We are working quickly on this developing situation and will continue to update the public as new information becomes available. This is in service of FDA’s mission to protect human and animal health.”

Additional Information:

  • The FDA is alerting pet owners and veterinary professionals about certain Sportmix pet food products manufactured by Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc. that may contain potentially fatal levels of aflatoxin.
  • The FDA is aware of at least 70 deaths and 80 illnesses in dogs that ate the recalled product.
  • This is an ongoing investigation. Case counts and the scope of this pending recall may expand as new information becomes available.
  • Aflatoxin is a toxin produced by the mold Aspergillus flavus which can grow on corn and other grains used as ingredients in pet food. At high levels, aflatoxin can cause illness and death in pets.
  • Pets experiencing aflatoxin poisoning may have symptoms such as sluggishness, loss of appetite, vomiting, jaundice (yellowish tint to the eyes or gums due to liver damage) and/or diarrhea. In severe cases, this toxicity can be fatal. In some cases, pets may suffer liver damage but not show any symptoms.
  • Pet owners should stop feeding their pets the recalled products listed in the FDA Advisory below and consult their veterinarian, especially if the pet is showing signs of illness. The pet owner should remove the food and make sure no other animals have access to the recalled product.
  • The FDA is asking veterinarians who suspect aflatoxin poisoning in their patients to report the cases through the Safety Reporting Portal or by calling their local FDA Consumer Complaint Coordinators. Pet owners are also urged to report suspected cases to the FDA.

Related Information

The FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency also is responsible for the safety and security of our nation’s food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products.

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