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Whistleblowers at Mars warn of deadly poison gas

Problems continue to mount for Mars Petcare as more people come forward alleging that Mars compromised their health by exposing them to a lethal pesticide used to fumigate grains and other pet food ingredients.

An attorney from Kansas City, Missouri says he’s already representing eight former workers of Mars Petcare.  Another four people might soon be transferred to him from a Joplin attorney, bringing the total number of plaintiffs to twelve.

But there’s one other former employee who says he’s been forced to pursue legal action on his own. The news reports say that his lawsuit stems from the same plant for the same problems, but at the time he worked there it was owned by Doane Pet Care. Doane was purchased by Mars in 2006, shortly after the man stopped working there.

According to his family, his health rapidly began to deteriorate; symptoms his family believe were caused by exposure to aluminum phosphide, a dangerous pesticide used by Doane and Mars to fumigate grain. He’s since been diagnosed with several benign tumors, affecting his memory, cognitive skills, and his ability to walk.

His job at the former plant? Checking grain as it was unloaded; grain that had been treated with a deadly pesticide: aluminum phosphide.

After Doane was sold to Mars, exposure to aluminum phosphide continued. Eight (now possibly twelve) former employees claim they too were exposed to the same fumigant at the Mars plant in Joplin, Missouri.

Both lawsuits accuse the pet food manufacturers of exposing workers to a highly toxic pesticide used to fumigate grains and other commodities used in pet food manufacture. Government documents show pesticide chemicals used at the facility, like aluminum phosphide, have been linked to serious health issues.

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Mollie Morrissette

Mollie Morrissette, author of Poisoned Pets, is an animal food safety expert and advisor to AAFCO. Help support her work by making a donation today.

Comments (5) Write a comment

  1. It would be interesting to dig deeper into the MARS/DOANE/MENU. CONNECTIONS and ALL the various recalls over the years since 1954. Also, of interest would be the possible tie-in of the melamine (from China) and whether or not Doane International was involved in the export to import during the RECALLS.

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  2. Hannie, You can find a list of all the products in an article Mollie previously wrote – “Mars petcare, maker of Pedigree Pet Food, accused of negligence”.

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  3. Mollie: First of all, thanks for all you (& Susan) do. Second……..does anyone have a list of what foods are made at this particular plant? That’s something I think we’d all like to know. I sure would like to share that one w/my friends. I know how difficult they make it to find out what’s made where…….:-(

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