Wednesday, April 2, 2008

How will the US class action settlement with Menu Foods affect the industry?

Press releases and news reports abounded yesterday with the April Fool's Day announcement that Menu Foods had reached a tentative agreement to settle the 116 class action suits in the United States.

According to a press release from the Menu Foods Income Fund:

"The definitive terms of settlement, together with a motion for preliminary approval thereof, are scheduled to be filed with the U.S. District Court on May 1, 2008, with the hearing scheduled to occur at 11:00 a.m. on May 14, 2008. The scheduling for Canadian court approval has not yet been determined, but is expected to occur in a similar time frame.

The settlement amount will be funded by the defendants, including Menu Foods and its product liability insurer. Menu Foods' estimate for recall costs remains unchanged at Cdn.$55 million."

Let's see what further details emerge over the next few weeks, if the negotiated settlement is a joke or if there is any real justice for the thousands of pet owners who were deceived by claims of "healthy and balanced" pet food products. You can see what my kitty Makena thinks of Menu Foods (her pic is above).

Will it result in a change of pet food formulations? Set the stage for changes to FDA regulatory changes involving the listing and inspections of ingredients at pet food company plants? Will it stop the formulating of carbohydrate-laden, species-inappropriate "formulations" that are being pushed by veterinarians so aggressively that have caused so many illnesses in our cats? Or will it merely mean that Menu Foods will be getting their glutens from another supplier?

If you haven't read the third amended legal brief by the Florida law firm that launched the US national class action on the basis of misleading advertising, you can read it here.

Really, as Don Hamilton, DVM and author of "Homeopathic Care for Cats and Dogs -- Small Doses for Small Animals" says, raw diet is really the "only solution" for feeding safe and healthy food for your beloved pet.

The industry has failed us. Just because they are being forced to pay for the pain, suffering, illnesses and deaths caused to thousands of pets doesn't mean that everything is fine on the pet food front.

If you haven't switched to a good veterinarian that is trained in homeopathy, now is the time to do so. At least you won't have to argue with your vet about feeding a raw meat diet -- homeopaths understand the importance of diet in pet health and longevity, unlike many mainstream vets who unquestioningly believe the biased and untruthful pet food industry propaganda training they received in vet school.

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