Tainted soy oil cost a West Michigan turkey farm more than $1 million when it killed 47,000 turkeys and ruined 500 tons of feed, federal authorities said.
Shur-Green Farms of Ansonia, Ohio, allegedly continued to sell the tainted product after the turkey deaths. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said the company intentionally misrepresented industrial waste tainted by drug residue as recycled restaurant oil.
FDA said at least two shipments of the waste byproduct, which is intended only for fuel use, was sold in September 2014 as soy oil with the implication that it was fit for use as food.
The oil was used at Sietsema Farms of Allendale, Michigan, where turkey flocks at five of the farm’s locations died in August 2014 after eating feed that contained the oil. All the birds died before they went to market.
Sietsema Farms believed the oil it bought was restaurant-grade oil used in the manufacture of pelleted animal feed, and was unaware of the drug content.
Also as a result of the feed contamination, 35,900 head of swine were held from market for 29 days to assure none of the drug residue would be in the meat when they went to the slaughterhouse.
Drug-tainted oil, sold as food-grade, caused Michigan turkey farm disaster, FDA says