FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine testing feed samples for PFAS

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Source: NMPF

NMPF staff met with the Food and Drug Administration Center for Veterinary Medicine (FDA CVM) after learning that FDA has started a new sampling project to explore levels of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in livestock feed samples The assignment will help the dairy industry understand if PFAS chemicals are getting into feed or not and if so at what levels. NMPF believes that no PFAS will be found, which will help push back on those who try to portray this as a dairy issue.

The project is set to run through the year, and FDA has assured NMPF it isn’t focused on dairy and is intended only to gain more knowledge around PFAS. FDA CVM plans to collect 60 different samples from randomly selected locations throughout the country. The samples will comprise 20 corn silage, 20 alfalfa hay and 20 corn grain samples. To date, 27 samples have been collected and 14 have been tested. All have come back non-detect for PFAS. These results thus far are unsurprising, given that all PFAS chemicals are synthetic and shouldn’t be present on a farm or in crops grown on a farm unless the farm is adjacent to a military base, landfill, industrial site, or land applied sewage sludge to cropland.

PFAS encompasses a group of 5,000 synthetic chemicals, commonly used in non-stick products and firefighting foam. Concerns over their potential environmental and health impacts continued to gain awareness over the past decade. A handful of isolated incidents have directly impacted dairy farms, in some instances, preventing farmers from shipping milk. However, PFAS continues to be a water-centric issue, with hundreds or thousands of drinking water sources contaminated. Little to nothing is known about how PFAS is transferred through the food chain. NMPF will continue to work with FDA and monitor the findings of this feed study.