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    New Round of Recalls for Melamine-Tainted Pet Food Goes Beyond Gluten

    PACIOMA, Calif. - A new pet food recall was issued today by Natural Balance Pet Foods, which confirmed this morning that some production batches of its products may contain melamine. Meanwhile, Menu Foods, the pet food supplier that issued last month's major and widely covered pet food recall, added one additional item, and two different production dates of eight varieties of pet foods to its recall list.

    PACIOMA, Calif. - A new pet food recall was issued today by Natural Balance Pet Foods, which confirmed this morning that some production batches of its products may contain melamine. Meanwhile, Menu Foods, the pet food supplier that issued last month's major and widely covered pet food recall, added one additional item, and two different production dates of eight varieties of pet foods to its recall list.

    News of the latest recall apparently prompted a drop in the stock prices of some pet food manufacturers, as well as retailers that offer private label pet food supplied by Natural Balance. Shares of Safeway Inc. fell 36 cents to $36.64, while Wal-Mart Stores Inc. stock dropped 13 cents to $48.04. Store brand pet foods of both retailers were involved in the recall.

    Natural Balance had recalled all of its Venison dog products, and the dry Venison cat food only, regardless of date codes, after receiving consumer complaints involving several cats and dogs that developed kidney failure after eating the affected product. It apparently marked the first time in this recent spate of pet food recalls that dry food was involved.

    The recalled products include Venison and Brown Rice canned and bagged dry dog foods, Venison and Brown Rice dog treats, and Venison and Green Pea dry cat food.

    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said in a statement about the recall: "We believe the source of the melamine is a rice protein concentrate. Natural Balance has confirmed this morning that some production batches of these products may contain melamine."

    Unlike with Menu Foods products, however, Natural Balance doesn't use wheat gluten as an ingredient. More than 100 brands of cat and dog food, mostly of them canned, were recalled last month due to melamine-tainted wheat gluten.

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