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Stop Animal Exploitation NOW!
S. A. E. N.
"Exposing the truth to wipe out animal experimentation"

Media Coverage

Animal-rights issues at MPI have been fixed, USDA says

Friday, July 25, 2008
BY ALEX NIXON
anixon@kalamazoogazette.com 

MATTAWAN -- An Ohio-based animal-rights group says a federal-government inspection report shows MPI Research committed ``serious violations of federal regulations which led directly to unnecessary pain and suffering for animals.''

Stop Animal Exploitation Now this week released a copy of an October 2007 inspection report on MPI's Mattawan facility that listed two violations of the Animal Welfare Act.

Officials of MPI and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which performed the inspection, both said two violations were found but that they have been corrected.

In one of the violations, researchers failed to include among written records information that test animals receiving a specific drug could experience alopecia, or loss of hair. Two animals receiving the drug were found by an inspector to be ``suffering from significant alopecia,'' the report stated.

In the second violation, a nonresponsive and barely breathing dog was not euthanized ``in a timely manner,'' the report stated.

MPI was inspected again in June and found no problems, said Nolan Lemon, a spokesman for the USDA's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, which has regulatory authority over animal care at research facilities such as MPI.

MPI has never been fined by the USDA, Lemon said.

``It's not unusual for even a good facility to get some citations from time to time,'' Lemon said. ``The important thing is to get them cleared up as soon as possible. They've got a clean inspection record now.''

MPI President and Chief Operating Officer William Harrison said the company resolved the violations ``immediately'' and upon reinspection in June had ``no findings.''

``We take the animal regulations from USDA very seriously,'' Harrison said.

Michael Budkie, executive director of Stop Animal Exploitation Now, twice has requested the USDA investigate MPI for violations Budkie says he learned about from company whistle-blowers.

Budkie has refused to reveal his sources, saying they fear reprisal from MPI.

Budkie first called for an investigation of MPI in October, during National Primate Liberation Week.

In April, after MPI's announcement of a $330 million expansion, Budkie again asked authorities to inspect the company. Budkie said the request was not related to MPI expansion but to World Laboratory Animal Liberation Week-.

See M P I Research, L.L.C., Mattawan, MI

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