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THE FDA BAN!


About Our Company

Concordia Turtle Farm was established in 1968, and is family owned and operated by Jesse Evans and his son Davey.  Jesse's Wife, Avis, is our Export Manager and Davey's wife, Shirby, is Assistant Export Manager.

Our motto is "The Customer is Always Right".


an aerial view of our farm - click to enlarge

    The late 1940's was the setting for the beginning of a new industry in Louisiana. The sale of baby pet turtles. This industry started with fewer than 10 men who would gather eggs and baby turtles from their natural habitats. These eggs were placed in sand boxes and then covered with burlap sacks. The eggs hatched in about 60 days and were sold to pet stores all over the US.

     In the early 70's some turtles were discovered to be carrying the Salmonella bacteria. The FDA deemed it necessary to place a ban on the sale of baby turtles with a carapace less than 4" in length here in the United States. The farmers began exporting their turtles to overseas markets, but the salmonella problem had still not been addressed. In the early 80's a group of farmers formed an association to deal with this and various other issues. This association, (now know as the Louisiana Turtle Farmer's Association, LTFA) asked the Louisiana State University Department of Microbiology for help. Dr. Ronald J. Siebeling began a research program and developed a way to successfully treat turtle eggs against the salmonella bacteria, now widely known as the "Siebeling Method" of treating eggs.


    In the mid 80's the salmonella problem still persisted, (some of the farmers were still not using Dr.
Siebeling's Method) and there were no laws or regulations requiring it's use. Some of the association members went to our state legislators and asked for help. Commissioner Bob Odom and the Louisiana Department of Agriculture & Forestry agreed to require turtle farming to be a licensed and regulated industry (Act 770). All turtles produced on Louisiana farms are now required to be laboratory tested for any trace of the salmonella bacteria, before they can be sold.

     The industry has an ongoing research program at Louisiana State University. Much of this research is funded by the LTFA, with matching funds from the great state of Louisiana. We can now produce a salmonella free turtle using a chemical and not a drug. The Louisiana Turtle Farmers Association, Dr. Mark Mitchell, and Dr. Maxwell Lea of the
Louisiana Department of Agriculture & Forestry, moving forward with the late Dr. Ron Siebeling's research, are continuing to make significant advances in treating turtles for salmonella.  With persistence and patience we hope to meet with FDA officials to present our research, and ask them to consider lifting the ban on the sale of turtles less than a 4" carapace here in the US, or to amend the law to make it legal for licensed farmers that use these methods of treating these turtles.

     The turtle farming industry has had a significant and positive economic impact on the State of Louisiana.  By the same token, there are groups out there that ignore these laws and put the public at risk by illegally (more) selling or "adopting" or giving away these hatchlings and thus making it more difficult to convince the FDA that we are an industry that wants to "do the right thing"