Pet Food Manufacturer Faces Another Class Action After Pet Deaths

Five plaintiffs from various states have brought a class-action in the Southern District of Indiana against Midwestern Pet Foods, Inc. (MPF) following the recall of nearly two dozen cat, dog, and fish food products contaminated with aflatoxins, which result from mold growth. The consumers charge the Evansville, Indiana-based pet food manufacturer with negligence, negligent misrepresentation, fraud, unjust enrichment, and violations of business and consumer protection laws.

Thursday’s complaint recounts how on Dec. 30, 2020, the defendant announced a recall on three of its “Sportmix” cat and dog food products explaining that test results revealed unacceptably high levels of aflatoxins. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) subsequently published news about the defendant’s recall and reported that several dogs had fallen ill or died after consuming MPF’s Sportmix products.

In mid-January, MPF reportedly expanded the list of recalled pet food products. According to the complaint and a Jan. 25 update posted on the FDA’s website, the agency and state agricultural departments are investigating the products, and the FDA has added a list of countries to which the recalled products may have been exported by MPF.

The complaint contends that the plaintiffs purchased pet food which they fed to their animals that either sickened, killed them, or caused them to be euthanized, resulting in veterinary expenses. The plaintiffs seek to certify two classes, a nationwide class consisting of “[a]ll persons residing in the United States who purchased for personal, family, or household use, Defendant’s pet food products containing corn with expiration dates on or before July 9, 2022 manufactured in its Chickasha, Oklahoma facility,” and a parallel California state class.

This is the latest of several class-actions MPF has been slapped with over the tainted pet food. According to a Jan. 13 article published by Law Street Media, the present recall is MPF’s first.

The plaintiffs are represented by Gibbs Law Group LLP.