On November 5th, I received the following e-mail. Others receiving this same e-mail included all the folks at Answers Pet Food, Susan Thixton (Truth About Pet Food), Kohl Harrington (Pet-Fooled Documentary), Mr. BC Henschen (Truth About Pet Food, AAFCO committee member), and two pet-owning consumers that have attended past meetings. We have been removed from committee positions, banned from attending meetings, and banned from using any website resources.
Nov 5 at 8:50 AM
As directed by legal counsel and the board of directors, your access to AAFCO resources is restricted until the resolution of the federal lawsuit, Lsytn LLC v. Food and Drug Administration, No. 19-cv-01943-PAB-KLM (D. Colo). Except for the print OP subscription being available to you, the AAFCO resources not accessible to you during this period include AAFCO meetings, the Feed BIN, AAFCO committees and work groups participation, and any other AAFCO resources not specifically identified here.
You are officially removed from any position as an AAFCO adviser, committee member, work group participant, claims of any representation of your interests or organization with AAFCO, involvement during AAFCO meetings, which are now unavailable to you, including by conference line, and any other claim of expert assistance to AAFCO.
Any reference to you and your company as an AAFCO adviser and your contact information are removed from the 2020 OP and future issues of the OP and the BIN until the lawsuit is resolved.
Please remove any claim that you are an AAFCO adviser from your email signature and from your website or social media sites. For the duration of the lawsuit, this is not accurate. At the resolution of the lawsuit, you may apply to AAFCO for consideration to be allowed to access AAFCO resources. We do not guarantee that you will be reinstated access to AAFCO resources.
Sue Hays CBC
AAFCO Executive Director
As most of the people named above are NOT employed by Answers Pet Food, nor do we have any stake in the company, banning anyone ever associated with them is beyond ridiculous. Are the big pet food companies and FDA so afraid of raw pet food companies that they need to have us completely banned? I have never caused disruption at an AAFCO meeting. I have never published anything that is not public knowledge, as their meetings are open to anyone wishing to call in and listen. What are they hiding? What is it they don’t want consumers to know?
On AAFCO’s website they state, "AAFCO’s interest is in consumer protection, which we approach through the health of the animal. Appropriate nutrition has long been recognized as the key to healthy animals and healthy people." If AAFCO's true mission is providing high quality nutrition for our pets, they would NOT allow the use of 4-D meats and animal products from animals that have died otherwise than from slaughter. They would have complete transparency for consumers. They would not be influenced by lobbying from big pet food companies.
Susan Thixton provided e-mail addresses for anyone wishing to contact AAFCO board members about this (possibly illegal) situation. You can find them here. I am asking as many pet owners as possible to contact these board members and let them know that the public has a right to know what ingredients are allowed to be used in pet food. They are also entitled to know how FDA, AAFCO, and veterinarians are influenced by lobbyists representing large pet food companies.
By attending AAFCO meetings, we are able to inform pet owners about current research and investigations by FDA (i.e. DCM investigation, dropping investigation of jerky treats with no resolution, raw food testing, etc), new ingredients proposed and accepted, and new discussions on the use of hemp in pet food and treats. Banning consumer representatives from meetings means pet-owning consumers do not have access to this information. Our tax dollars pay for FDA, CVM, and state representatives to attend these meetings. It is only fitting that the consumers paying for their attendance have access to the information discussed.
Don’t take this lying down! Stand up for your rights as pet owners. Demand action and ability to get the information presented at AAFCO meetings. Every person who was banned has paid $500 per meeting just to walk in the door, plus travel expenses all over the country twice a year. We pay this out of our own pockets. They have no right to exclude us from these meetings.