Quality Control FAQ

1. Why are you announcing this recall?

We are voluntarily recalling five lots of our Thrive, Verve and Zeal pet food products produced between August and November 2012 and sold nationwide in the US and Canada via retail stores, mail order and online after August 2012 because they have the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella. We are taking this action after learning that one of our raw ingredients suppliers has recalled a batch of human-grade parsley that many contain Salmonella. The batch of parsley was shipped to us in 2012 and used in the production of five lots of finished Honest Kitchen products.

We regularly test for Salmonella and other pathogens as part of our quality control process and have not received any reports of illness associated with these lots of products. Nonetheless, we are proceeding with this recall in order to ensure the full safety and quality of our products.

2. Which product lots are being recalled?

Verve:
Item Code: V4, VR
Production Date: 8/20/12
Size: 4 lb. box, 10 lb. box
Lot Number: 2332A (batches 1-3)

Item Code: VR
Production Date: 11/1/12
Size: 10 lb. box
Lot Number: 3062A (batches 8 & 9)

Zeal:
Item Code: Z4, ZR
Production Date: 8/14/12
Size: 4 lb. box, 10 lb. box
Lot Number: 2272A (batches 1-5)

Item Code: ZR
Production Date: 9/21/12
Size: 10 lb. box
Lot Number: 2652A (batches 1-4)

Thrive:
Item Code: TM
Production Date: 9/18/12
Size: 1 oz. sample
Lot Number: 2622A (batch 3)

3. Are my pets at risk if I fed them the recalled products?

We regularly test for Salmonella and other pathogens as part of our quality control process and have not received any reports of illness associated with these lots of products. Nonetheless, we are proceeding with this action in order to ensure the full safety and quality of our products.

4. What should I do if I have the recalled product?

If you have possession of recalled lots of Honest Kitchen Verve, Zeal or Thrive products, please follow these instructions:

  • Stop feeding the products to your pets.
  • Remove the UPC (bar code) and lot code from the packaging. Lot codes are located on the top of product boxes either adjacent to or opposite the UPC.
  • Discard the contents in a covered trash receptacle.
  • Submit for a replacement or full refund of the MSRP of the affected products (plus we will reimburse you $1.00 to cover your postage) by mailing the UPC and lot code along with a completed Reimbursement Form to The Honest Kitchen, 145 14th Street, San Diego, Calif. 92101, Attn: Reimbursements. All refunds will be processed within five business days (plus postage time).

5. Can I continue to feed my pet the recalled products if they do not appear ill?

No. We strongly advise you to stop feeding the products to your pets and follow the instructions in Question 4 to discard the product and submit for a refund.

6. Why are you recalling these products if none have tested positive for Salmonella?

We are committed to providing the highest-quality human-grade food available to our customers’ pets. While our quality control tests did not find evidence of Salmonella in any of our finished products, we are accountable for everything we make, and are recalling these products to ensure the safety and integrity of our products.

7. How do you select your suppliers?

We work closely with each of our suppliers to carefully source our human grade ingredients. We choose suppliers who care, because we care.

Many of our ingredients are carefully sourced from farms in their ‘native’ countries, such as Fair-trade Organic Quinoa from Bolivia, Sweet Potatoes from their native Peru and Bananas from the Philippines. We’re also a proud member of Green America, whose mission is to harness economic power—the strength of consumers, investors, businesses, and the marketplace—to create a socially just and environmentally sustainable society.

Read more about where each of our ingredients comes from.

8. Are any other lots of these products affected? Are any other The Honest Kitchen products affected?

No other batches, production dates or other Honest Kitchen products are affected by this recall. Every pound of parsley delivered by our raw ingredients supplier has been accounted for and was not used in the production of any other lots or products.

9. What quality control processes do you have in place to ensure the safety of your products?

We work closely with each of our suppliers to carefully source our human grade ingredients. Our finished products are made in a human food facility and held to the same high quality control standards as human food products. And, humans taste the products we make as part of our quality control and R&D processes.

As you may know, Salmonella can appear in many human foods, from pistachios to mangoes, but it trends particularly high in meats, eggs and leafy greens such as spinach, lettuce and herbs. To further protect you from the risks Salmonella can pose, we’re adding additional steps to our quality control process:

  • Al dehydrated leafy greens (parsley, basil, dandelion, spinach and alfalfa) will be steamed, to eliminate pathogens while maintaining our commitment to very gentle production that retains and protects the nutrients that nature provides.
  • We will conduct additional tests for pathogens on all leafy greens when they arrive at our manufacturing facility.
  • We are no longer purchasing any ingredients from the supplier that provided the parsley being recalled.

We are committed to continually evolving and adapting our procedures to prevent problems like this from occurring in the future.

10. You say you are a family business. How could you allow this to happen?

We apologize to you for the inconvenience this situation has created and we promise to continue to operate our family business in a way that lives up to the high standards that you have always expected from us.

At The Honest Kitchen, we are accountable for every pound of food that we produce. We are committed to always providing healthy, quality products that balance gentle production methods with a focus on safety and integrity. Together, we have built our company over the last decade on the principles of honesty, transparency and openness.

We believe the quality control processes we currently have in place, in addition to those we are currently adding, will ensure the continued safety and integrity of our products. We are also committed to continually evolving and adapting our procedures to prevent problems like this from occurring in the future.

11. How can I reach you if I have additional questions or need more information about this recall?

Please reach us by phone at 1-866-437-9729 or email at info@thehonestkitchen.com. Our customer service representatives will be available Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. PST to respond to inquiries.

12. I have a “thanks a bunch of parsley” seed bomb from you. Is this ok?

That’s correct! We used a boutique seed company to create these with Italian Parsley Seeds. They’re perfectly fine to grow & eat!

Meet the Author: Lucy Postins

Lucy Postins is founder of The Honest Kitchen as well as its Mother Hen and CEO. She is a companion animal nutritionist who started The Honest Kitchen in her kitchen in 2002. She is passionate about advanced nutrition and holistic health including complementary modalities such as herbalism and homeopathy. Considered an expert in her field, Lucy frequently writes articles for local and national media, conducts radio interviews and educational spots, and occasionally holds educational seminars for pet owners on the importance of good nutrition. She also recently authored Dog Obsessed, a guide to a happier, healthier life for the pup you love.

What is Human Grade Pet Food, Really?
Honest Kitchen Recall Announcement