CHARLOTTE, N.C. — State officials say a chemical blamed for more than a dozen pet deaths across the nation has been found in feed at a hog farm in western North Carolina.
Melamine was found in hogs at the farm, which wasn't identified, officials said Tuesday. The pigs have been quarantined and appear healthy. There is no immediate danger to the public, the officials said.
The chemical is used to manufacture plastics and foam.
Officials said the feed also was believed to have been sent to a hog farm in South Carolina, but no other farms in either state were affected.
Hog feed includes pet food that has spilled and can't be sold for pets. The feed came from a Diamond Pet plant in Gaston, South Carolina, and contained a rice concentrate that has been recalled by its manufacturer in California.
State officials said the U.S. Food and Drug Administration notified them on Friday that it tracked a shipment of the feed to the western North Carolina farm. By Monday, test results showed melamine in the hogs and the feed and officials are trying to determine if the pork is contaminated.
"The system worked and these animals were intercepted before they were allowed to leave the farm," said Mary Ann McBride, assistant North Carolina state veterinarian.
A farm in South Carolina was quarantined while officials wait for test results.
Steven Cohen of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service said fewer than 10 hogs farms received the feed. The others are in California, New York, Utah and maybe Ohio.