News & Insights

Pet food product recall highlights issues for producers

Published 19 November 2018

A major Australian pet food product has been recalled after dogs reportedly fell ill in another case that highlights the value of product recall insurance.

Black Hawk Pet Care was forced to cease production and quarantine one of its products, which has since been recalled as dogs reportedly fell ill, reports WA Today.

Pet owners in Perth were the first to make complaints about the Black Hawk Grain Free Salmon product. Sean Duggan, CEO of Black Hawk parent company Masterpet, said the firm had taken steps to limit the impact of the outbreak.

"We have completed extensive testing of the product to ensure that it poses no harm. All tests to date have come back well within normal ranges,” Duggan said, according to WA Today.

"We are continuing to test to ensure we can identify the issue as soon as possible.

"Until we can guarantee the exact same level of consistency and quality that our pets are accustomed to, we have ceased production of the product and quarantined all remaining stock.”

Stephen Elms, National Head of Food Production at Gallagher, said that product recalls like this one, as well as the recent strawberry crisis, highlight the importance of product recall insurance.

“For this sector, product recall cover is of paramount importance and would respond if products have been tampered with and need to be withdrawn or recalled off shelves,” Elms said.

“It is also important that producers and their brokers continually review their liability limits to ensure there would be sufficient coverage in place in the event of a loss.”

Product recall insurance features several benefits that food producers may need to utilise in the event of a recall or notification, such as:

  • recall, replacement and extortion costs
  • consultation expenses
  • business interruption
  • brand rehabilitation costs

While the recall of product may be the first thing that springs to mind, the reputational element of the cover in its brand rehabilitation aspect is also important. This can provide producers with expert help from PR or brand management firms to help navigate the difficult times that can come following a product recall.

This subject is explored in greater detail in the Gallagher Market Overview Report, Reflecting on a year of change. The report is available as a digital download.

Talk to our experienced food production insurance experts

Specialised industry knowledge means a food production insurance expert can identify the potential risks presented by the processes involved as well as the roll-on effects, such as the need for product recall, and collateral damage, to reputation, for example, and formulate a risk management and insurance cover program accordingly.


Our team of food production specialists calls on the Gallagher legacy of 75+ years in servicing food production enterprises, which means that whether you are a primary producer, in processing, transit or grocery wholesaling, we have deep understanding of the risks associated with each step of the supply chain and how to manage and mitigate them. 


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Further reading

Food production insurance and risk management expertise

Insurance market update: food production challenges from farm to table

Gallagher provides insurance, risk management and benefits consulting services for clients in response to both known and unknown risk exposures. When providing analysis and recommendations regarding potential insurance coverage, potential claims and/or operational strategy in response to national emergencies (including health crises), we do so from an insurance and/or risk management perspective, and offer broad information about risk mitigation, loss control strategy and potential claim exposures. We have prepared this commentary and other news alerts for general information purposes only and the material is not intended to be, nor should it be interpreted as, legal or client-specific risk management advice. General insurance descriptions contained herein do not include complete insurance policy definitions, terms and/or conditions, and should not be relied on for coverage interpretation. The information may not include current governmental or insurance developments, is provided without knowledge of the individual recipient’s industry or specific business or coverage circumstances, and in no way reflects or promises to provide insurance coverage outcomes that only insurance carriers’ control.

Gallagher publications may contain links to non-Gallagher websites that are created and controlled by other organisations. We claim no responsibility for the content of any linked website, or any link contained therein. The inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement by Gallagher, as we have no responsibility for information referenced in material owned and controlled by other parties. Gallagher strongly encourages you to review any separate terms of use and privacy policies governing use of these third party websites and resources.

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