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Old 04-24-2008, 06:26 PM
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Default Re: FYI--FDA Finds Problems at Evanger's

Evanger's wasn't involved in the recall with its products or any of those it produced for others. But the set up is a lot like the Castleberry's botulism aftermath--Castleberry's produces Natural Balance Eatables.

Augusta Chronicle March 11, 2008

"Federal concerns about the operation of food processing equipment inside Castleberry's Food Co. prompted this week's shutdown of the Augusta chili maker.

"Most of the plant's 330 employees did not report to work Monday because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration revoked the company's temporary operating permit.

"That permit was issued in September in the aftermath of a last summer's $35 million botulism recall.

"An FDA spokeswoman said the permit was revoked because inspectors found "deviations" in how some of the processing equipment was being operated.

""The deviations could have caused the food processed to be unsafe. Because under-processing by Castleberry in the past resulted in a botulism outbreak and because Castleberry was operating under an emergency permit, FDA revoked the emergency permit," said agency spokeswoman Stephanie Kwisnek.

"Castleberry's officials emphasized Monday that the current shutdown does not involve a new recall.

""We expect to have a quick resolution," said Dave Melbourne, Castleberry's senior vice president.

""We are working quickly and closely with the FDA to answer its questions and hope to resume production as soon as we've addressed them.""

FDA Orders Shutdown of Castleberry Food Plant March 12, 2008

"The suspension of its operating permit and shutdown was ordered on Friday, and a FDA spokesperson said that part of the processing lines used to make food were not being operated properly and this could result in underprocessed cans of food.

"Here is the FDA press release:

"In July 2007, over 80 types of canned food products and 4 types of dog food produced by Castleberry Foods were recalled due to possible contamination with Clostridium botulinum.

"FDA issued an ĎOrder of Need for Emergency Permití to the firm at that time. This means that the firm was not able to ship its products in interstate commerce until it received a permit from FDA. The agency issues an ĎOrder of Need for Emergency Permití if it determines that a firm does not meet requirements of the regulations pertaining to the manufacture of thermally processed low-acid foods or acidified foods, such that the safety of the food is in question.

"FDA believes the company remedied the previously existing food safety problems and the processing procedures will result in a finished product that does not present a health hazard.

"The firm requested an emergency permit and FDA issued an emergency permit after a review of a firmís documented corrective actions and processing procedures. In September 2007, FDA issued a permit that allowed the firm to ship products that were processed using the firmís machinery (the vertical still retorts) not associated with the recalled product. None of these retorts was believed to be linked to the previous C. botulinum contamination.

"During a recent inspection of these processing lines FDA found that the vertical still retorts were not being operated in a manner as required, raising the possibility that some cans processed in these retorts could be under-processed. On March 7, 2008 FDA sent a letter to the company suspending the temporary emergency permit.

"No products have been identified as contaminated. FDA has asked the firm to verify the safety of all products produced since the emergency permit was issued."

In the Castleberry case, they received the Emergency Operating Permit to start their plant up again after the clean up from the botulism contaminated foods. When FDA inspected the plant they found that the conditions which could once again lead to them producing botulism contaminated foods had not been corrected. FDA then revoked their Emergency Operating Permit and this is why the plant had to shut down last month.

If Evanger's doesn't correct the problems with their plant within an FDA-given period of time, they also could lose their Emergnecy Operating Permit and would need to close their plant, just as Castleberry's did.

Here's the most current list of the other brands who have Evanger's make their canned food for them-

Manufactures canned foods

Evangers Dog and Cat Food Company, Inc.
221 Wheeling Road
Wheeling, IL

Foods manufactured:
Artemis - Holistic Pet Food
Blackwood Pet Food