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Ogden pet food company says defective bags caused $5M loss

By Mark Shenefelt, Standard-Examiner Staff - | Jul 24, 2016
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Ogden City's Animal Service Officers hand delivered bags of dog food to Ogden pet owners in need. The food was donated by American Nutrition.

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OGDEN — An Ogden pet food company says in a lawsuit it suffered $5 million or more in damages due to alleged defects in bags obtained from a packaging supplier.

American Nutrition Inc., 2813 Wall Ave., filed a contract product liability suit June 21 in 2nd District Court against Mondi Bags USA, a worldwide paper and packaging products manufacturer. The suit was transferred to U.S. District Court in Salt Lake City on Friday, July 22.

In July 2015, The PetSmart store chain rejected shipments of Authority brand pet foods from American Nutrition because of fiber tears and “catastrophic” slider-opener failures that resulted in partial or total separation of the sliders from the food bags, the Ogden company says in the suit.

“ANI lost significant market share of the Authority product and other PetSmart products to other manufacturers,” the suit says.

In its answer, filed Friday, Mondi denied the bags were defective and said failures may have been caused by American Nutrition or other parties during the supply chain and production process.

American Nutrition, which has been operating in Ogden since 1972, said it filed suit after Mondi would not reimburse it for damages.

Bill Behnken, president and CEO of American Nutrition, said in an interview Friday the company scurried to install new closures on the affected bags to keep as much product on PetSmart’s shelves as possible.

The problem “certainly hurt our reputation with PetSmart,” Behnken said.

Efforts to contact Jeremy Stuart, an attorney representing Mondi, were unsuccessful.

You can reach reporter Mark Shenefelt at mshenefelt@standard.net or 801 625-4224. Follow him on Twitter at @mshenefelt and like him on Facebook.

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