An investigation into illegal drug residues by the Food and Drug Administration has led to a permanent injunction being filed against an Iowa dairy.

Last week, a Complaint and Consent Decree of Permanent Injunction were filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Iowa, Western Division, against Ysselstein Dairy Inc., Rock Valley, Iowa.

The injunction is based on nine illegal residues in the edible tissue of seven dairy cows sampled by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) between July 21, 1992, and March 10, 2006. The drug residues found by FSIS included antibiotics such as tetracycline, sulfadimethoxine, flunixin, oxytetracycline, and penicillin at levels not permitted by the FDA.

The FDA is concerned about the sale of animals for human food that may contain illegal levels of animal drugs because of the potential for adverse effects on human health. The FDA approves new animal drugs with requirements, including a specified time period to withdraw an animal from treatment prior to slaughter, to assure that a drug has been depleted from edible tissue to a level safe for humans.

Under the terms of the Consent Decree, the dairy must implement systems to identify animals, keep accurate records, maintain drug control, drug accountability, and drug residue withdrawal control. Furthermore, if the dairy is found to not be in compliance with the terms of the Decree or the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act, the FDA may require the dairy to cease operations until they are in compliance. The dairy also can be fined. To read the full press release, go to:

Food & Drug Administration