The Judicial Panel for Multi-District Litigation, commonly known as the MDL Panel, met on May 31, 2007 in Las Vegas to decide where the hundreds of pending pet food cases would be transferred. They have now ruled that all the cases should be handled by United States District Court Judge Noel Hillman, sitting in Camden, New Jersey. One of the factors for the choice of Camden is that Menu Foods has a plant where the defective pet food was made in Pennsuaken, New Jersey, a town adjacent to Camden. Menu Foods recalled 60 million cans of pet food when it became apparent that the pet food was causing harm and death to pets. Menu Foods had previously been ordered by Judge Hillman not to contact pet owners directly. Menu Foods had been trying to settle cases directly with pet owners, including some who were represented by attorneys. There will be a hearing before Judge Hillman on June 27, 2007 dealing with another pet food maker, Iams, a division of Proctor and Gamble.
For more information on this subject, please refer to our section on Defective and Dangerous Products.