Even if you don’t own a pet, you should still be concerned about pet food, says EatingWell nutrition advisor Marion Nestle, a professor at New York University and best-selling author of What to Eat. “Contaminated pet foods are early warnings of the safety hazards of globalization.”
Nestle’s Pet Food Politics (University of California Press, September 2008) details the recall of more than 100 brands of dog and cat food containing wheat gluten from China that was contaminated with the chemical melamine, which according to the FDA prompted 17,000 consumer complaints, including reports of 4,150 cat and dog deaths. These events set off another massive recall of everything from tires to toothpaste and a subsequent international crisis over the safety of imported consumer goods from China. Congress has since passed food-safety provisions pertaining to pet food. Nestle’s next book is What Pets Eat (Harcourt, 2009).