Secrets & Silence; How Diamond Pet Food Deals With Recalls

Dear Diamond,

Would you mind answering a few questions about your pet food recalls? Because I have called several times in the last week or so and no one has gotten back to me yet.

I am starting to feel like you’re avoiding me. I sure hope that’s not true.

Because the questions I have are important ones; ones I know that pet parents across the globe want answers to as well. 

So please, would you mind terribly, just fill us in as to what the Hell is actually going on down there in South Carolina and Missouri?

Because frankly, my patience is starting to wear mighty thin at this point and I am getting sick and tired of waiting for answers. I run a website called, Poisoned Pets, one you definitely don’t want to be on if you own a pet food business, ever. So, unless you like being raked over the coals on the web, I suggest someone get back to me ASAP. So spill!


Pissed-off and worried-sick in California

P.S. Below is a list of questions I have for you. Could you do me a great big favor and answer them? Now?


Q. What was the source of the bacteria (in both plants)? Aside from the obvious places where it bred, you know cardboard doesn’t clean up too well.

Q. What steps have been taken to assure that no other food will be affected? ‘Cause I sure as Hell hope this was your wake-up call. That inspection report was just nasty.

Q. What other brands are made in the Gaston and Missouri plants? Because I know all my pet food pals would like to know so we can spread the news far and wide?

Q. Exactly where was the cardboard and duct tape used on the machinery? Did you submit photos to “There! I fixed It!”? If not, you guys definitely qualify for the epic Fail Award.

Q. If employees can’t wash their hands, what happens if they pick their nose or scratch their ass? Do your employees have many sick days? You do have sinks in the bathrooms, I hope?

Q. So, if you weren’t testing for pathogens on incoming product, can I assume you didn’t test the finished product either?

Q. What would have happened if Michigan Department of Agriculture hadn’t discovered the Salmonella? Besides thanking your lucky stars, that is.

Q. Just curious, you knew a week in advance that the Gaston plant was going to be inspected by a team of investigators from the FDA – didn’t it occur to you that they probably wouldn’t be hip to the redneck repairs, the rotting foam, the pitted paddles, the lack of sanitation or the dude touching raw product with his bare hands?

Q. Why was a single product recalled during a single day at the Missouri plant? And why was there no mention of the plant’s location in the press release? Was that just a little Oops! or did you actually think people wouldn’t notice that glaring omission.

Q. Can you confirm if Diamond requires a positive test result for Salmonella for a consumer to file a claim? I sure hope not, because as far as I know, if anyone or a pet gets sick from a product you made – a contaminated product – you are screwed, basically. Don’t believe me? Talk to Bill Marler – he’ll tell you.

Q. How many unconfirmed or confirmed number of affected cats and dogs have been reported to Diamond? How many deaths? How many of those pets tested positive for Salmonella Infantis?

Q. Why are some bags missing production codes and best-by dates (I have photographs)? ‘Cause without that information – um, it’s kinda hard to tell when and where it was made. Hello!

Q. Why is there animal fat and animal digest at the Gaston plant when none of your products contain either ingredient?

Q. How did Diamond arrive at the period during which it decided to recall all product manufactured during that time period? I’m really curious, what was different about the day before the recall production time frame? Was that the day before someone had the brilliant idea of using cardboard and duct tape on machinery used to make pet food?

Q. What was the global distribution of the recalled product? I think the least you can do is warn other countries of a potential health hazard to humans and animals. Isn’t there a law that says you have to?

Q. Have any pets or people affected outside the US been reported to Diamond? If so, I’m sure the CDC would love to know.

Q. Why is there no country of origin printed on Taste of the Wild labels? I guess that was another printing error, like the bags with the missing production codes and best-by dates?

Q. Can you confirm that Diamond owns Taste of the Wild and Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul? You know, cause people are way pissed off for spending mega bucks on a food made by a company like yours, no offense.

Q. Why has no one in the media department gotten back to me? I have called numerous times. I am really not a very patient person where animal welfare is concerned. Little tip – fire your media department, because they really suck at communication – it’s kind of a requirement in that job.

Q. I know you probably don’t want people to know how big you screwed up, so I’ll do it for you. Question: Guess how many formulas have been recalled? Answer: Too damn many. No seriously, 155. How far around the world that pet food was sent? Who knows.

Diamond: 27 formulas
4Health (Tractor Supply): 34 formulas
Apex: 1 formula
Canidae: 4 formulas
Chicken Soup for the Pet Lover’s Soul (Diamond): 20 formulas
Country Value (Diamond): 4 formulas
Kirkland (Costco): 7 formulas
Natural Balance: 5 formulas
Premium Edge (Diamond): 20 formulas
Professional (Diamond): 10 formulas
Taste of the Wild (Diamond): 20 formulas
Solid-Gold: 2 formulas
Wellness (WellPet): 1 formula

TOTAL: 155 formulas recalled

Diamond’s troubled plant is up and running again, despite not having found the cause of the contamination
Your complete guide to the Diamond Pet Food recalls
FDA Releases Diamond Pet Foods Preliminary Inspection Report
Diamond Pet Foods’ inspection report reveals shocking observations by the FDA

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Mollie Morrissette

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