Earlier this year, products from high-end dog food brands Evanger’s and Against the Grain were recalled earlier this year for a surprising reason: Cans from that batch were found to be contaminated with pentobarbital, a drug used for euthanasia mostly of dogs, cats, and horses. The source of the drug still hasn’t been discovered, and now Evanger’s has quietly added another variety of dog food to the recall.
The addition to the recall is the company’s Braised Beef product, which contains beef (or alleged beef — more on that below) from the same supplier as the can that poisoned five pugs in Washington state. What you should look for are cans with expiration dates between Dec. 2019 and Jan. 2021. Call Evanger’s at 847-537-0102 if you have any questions about cans in your pantry.
News about this recall took a strange turn early last week when one of the owners of Evanger’s told a reporter that small amounts of horse DNA turned up in the Hunk of Beef cans, which were supposed to contain 100% beef.
Sodium pentobarbital is not supposed to be in anyone’s food. It’s a sedative, occasionally used to control seizures or treat insomnia in humans. However, it’s more commonly used to euthanize cats, dogs, horses, and other animals not destined for consumption. It’s also used for human euthanasia in localities where that’s legal, and has been used for executions by lethal injection. It can be taken orally.
Food Safety News reports that the supplier linked to this recall is not a USDA-certified provider of human-grade meat, as Evanger’s had promoted its food, but took part in a voluntary certification program through USDA for pet food suppliers. The problem? It was using an export certification number from that program, USDA-APHIS, that had expired more than a decade ago.
The investigation continues, and we’ll share any updates or expansions of the recall as we hear about them.