SAEN LogoSanta Cruz Biotech faces third USDA complaint alleging animal mistreatment; shooting goat in the head
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ACTION: Demand TERMINATION of SCB's Animal Dealer License

Dr. Robert Gibbens
Director, Wetern Region, USDA
(970) 494-7478
[email protected]
[email protected]

Please TERMINATE Santa Cruz Biotech's Animal Dealer License for their blatant disregard of the Animal Welfare Act (AWA) when they failed to provide veterinary care for 14 goats who suffered from severe illnesses or injuries (lame, anemic, excessively thin, etc). SCB has previously been levied a $4,600 fine and they are currently the target of a third USDA complaint, but their behavior has not changed. This must NOT be tolerated and MUST be punished to the fullest extent of the law. The time is NOW to send a clear message with stiff penalties to these renegade, negligent facilities that these behaviors will NOT be tolerated!


Santa Cruz Biotech faces third USDA complaint alleging animal mistreatment; shooting goat in the head
By Jondi Gumz, Santa Cruz Sentinel, August 20, 2015

 Santa Cruz Biotechnology, one of the largest global suppliers of antibodies used in research, is facing a third complaint by the U.S. Department of Agriculture alleging the company "willfully violated" the federal Animal Welfare Act, mistreating 14 sickly goats in its herd.

This complaint, dated Aug. 7, alleges inspectors found "repeated failures to provide minimally adequate and expeditious veterinary care and treatment to animals," during visits from April through August 2012. A goat in distress was killed July 7, 2015, with a bolt pistol to the forehead without euthanasia because a veterinarian was not available.

Some goats were not seen by a veterinarian for days, with some were euthanized as a result. One awaiting euthanization deteriorated for two weeks but had not been put down, according to the complaint.

The USDA alleges the company "demonstrated bad faith by misleading" inspectors about "the existence of an undisclosed location where regulated animals were housed," which precluded their inspection.
Michael Budkie, an animal research watchdog in Ohio who has monitored Santa Cruz Biotechnology for years, contends a third USDA complaint is "unprecedented."

A message left for Santa Cruz Biotechnology spokesman Matt Mullin was not returned before the Sentinel deadline.

The USDA filed complaints against Santa Cruz Biotechnology in July 2012 and November 2014; the company paid a $4,600 penalty in 2005 to resolve allegations of Animal Welfare Act violations the year before.
Founded by John and Brenda Stephenson in 1991, Santa Cruz Biotechnology has been among the city's largest employers, with 200 workers in 2013.\About 53 percent of global labs use antibodies from Santa Cruz Biotechnology, which was second to Sigma-Aldrich in St. Louis, Missouri, at 57 percent, according to a 2012 report by Frost and Sullivan.

The company occupies a large office complex at 2145 Delaware Ave. Its website indicates the headquarters is now in Dallas, with additional offices in Paso Robles and Sun Valley, Idaho, all of which have job openings, along with sales offices in Heidelberg, Germany and Shanghai, China.

According to the USDA, the company is responsible for thousands of animals, 15,933 in 2012, when most of the violations alleged in the 2015 complaint took place, and 9,139 animals in 2014.

The sickly goats identified in the latest complaint had a variety of ailments ranging from anemia, weight loss, in one case 29 pounds, dermatitis, leg injuries, respiratory problems and a rattlesnake bite, according to the USDA.

The regulatory agency issued citations for noncompliance in 2010 and 2011 after inspections and told the company to correct problems such as inadequate veterinary care and incomplete medical records for sick animals. Those findings triggered follow-up inspections and reports of inadequate animal care.

The USDA complaints against the antibody giant have garnered coverage in The New Yorker and the magazine Nature and the attention of the Animal Welfare Institute, a nonprofit based in Washington, D.C.

An administrative law judge was scheduled to hear the USDA's case against Santa Cruz Biotechology in a closed-door proceeding beginning Aug. 18, according to the Animal Welfare Institute.

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