From ANIMAL PEOPLE, June 1995:

MILWAUKEE––Newly unsealed
search warrants executed in September 1994
by U.S. Customs Service special agent Steve
Sutherland allege the closest links yet
between the Provimi Veal Corporation, of
Waukesha, Wisconsin, the largest distribu-
tor of milk-fed veal and lamb in the U.S.,
and the illegal use of clenbuterol, a banned
steroid. The drug speeds the growth of calves
and lambs––but humans who eat clenbuterol-
tainted meat may suffer an accelerated heart
rate, muscle tremors, headaches, dizziness,
nausea, fever, and chills.
According to the warrants, copies
of which were obtained by Humane Farming
Association investigator Gail Eisenitz, the
clenbuterol traffic directly involved Aat
Groenvelt, who founded Provimi in 1962,
introduced the use of the veal crate to North
America, and was also instrumental in pro-
moting the popularity of “milk-fed spring
lamb,” essentially the meat of lambs raised
like veal calves.

The warrants present evidence that
Groenvelt is not only president of Provimi,
but also vice president of Pricor Inc., the
Dutch-based veterinary pharmaceuticals firm
whose U.S. subsidiary, Vitek, is the alleged
conduit for smuggling clenbuterol into the
U.S. from the Netherlands and then distribut-
ing it to veal and lamb suppliers. Vitek is
also partially owned by John a.k.a. Jannes
Doppenberg, who is the Vitek president.
Pricor president Gerard Hoogendijk, mean-
while, is a part owner of Provimi.
Assert the warrants, “Provi-Lean
Inc. was incorporated within the state of
Kansas during February of 1989. Provi-
Lean’s business was raising lambs from birth
to slaughter for the Provimi Veal
Corporation. Initial directors of Provi-Lean
included Stephen Beal,” Hoogendijk, and
Groenvelt. Already, the warrants indicate,
Beal was worried about “unusually high
death rates in the lamb operation. It was
believed by Beal that the feed provided by
Vitek through the insistence of Provimi and
utilized in the lamb program, contained ille-
gal substances.” Eventually, “in late 1988,
Doppenberg visited the lamb operation in
Kansas, and told Beal that clenbuterol and
cimaterol was used in the lamb feed to
increase the lamb loin eye, to improve the
color of the lamb meat, and to assist in the
dispelling of fatty acids which were excreted
through the lamb’s urine.”
Doppenberg allegedly reaffirmed
his statements to Beal on another occasion.
Then, the warrants continue, “In late 1988,
while in Aat Groenvelt’s presence, Beal
questioned Pat Moore, a Provimi Veal
Corporation officer, about repartitioning
agents used in the lamb feed. Groenvelt
pulled Beal away from Moore and told Beal
not to talk about the feed to Moore because
Moore knows nothing about it. Groenvelt
also told Beal not to be concerned about clen-
buterol and not to talk about it with anyone
until it gets approved for use. In late 1988 or
early 1989, Beal met with Aat Groenvelt,
Gerard Hoogendijk, John Doppenberg, and
other Provimi corporate officers at the corpo-
rate office in Waukesha, Wisconsin, con-
cerning Provi-Lean. During the meeting,
Beal asked Groenvelt, with Hoogendijk pre-
sent, if Vitek could reduce the level of clen-
buterol within the lamb feed. Groenvelt
referred the issue to Doppenberg.”
Probe delayed
Beal reported the illegal use of
clenbuterol to the Food and Drug Admini-
stration in August 1989, but the ongoing fed-
eral investigation, also involving the USDA,
didn’t go anywhere until February 1994,
when U.S. Customs traced illegal veterinary
drug imports to Vitek. Investigators then
learned, the warrants state, “that Vitek had
been conducting unauthorized animal feed
experiments in the Vitek research barn,” on
93 cattle who were “under contract to the
Provimi Veal Corporation.” Doppenberg is
said to have stated that “when the veal calves
completed their growth cycle, the calves
were to be slaughtered at the Provimi slaugh-
ter/packing facility in Seymour, Wisconsin,
and that the meat, allegedly tainted with
unapproved drugs and other chemicals,
would have entered the food chain for human
consumption through Provimi Veal
Corporation. Upon questioning, Doppenberg
stated,” to Sutherland, “that the animal feed
utilized in the experiments contained chemi-
cals brought illegally into the U.S., which
were provided by Vitek’s parent company,
Pricor, located in the Netherlands.”
Doppenberg purportedly told
Sutherland “that the clenbuterol used by
Vitek in its animal feed is smuggled in the
U.S. by Gerard Hoogendijk, on his person,
when he enters the U.S. from the Netherlands
on a quarterly basis.”
Criminal charges in the case are
expected to be filed following a painstaking
reconstruction and examination of computer-
ized files seized from two Provimi locations,
the Business Records Center in Milwaukee,
and a restaurant owned by Groenvelt.
Many paragraphs of the search war-
rants released to Eisenitz under the Freedom
of Information Act were blacked out, appar-
ently to protect the identities of witnesses.
On February 20, Belgian animal health
inspector Karel Van Noppen was murdered
while probing illegal use of clenbuterol in
Flanders, near the Dutch border. Belgian
police and drug inspectors responded on
March 10 with raids on 82 Flanders veteri-
nary clinics which were allegedly involved in
clenbuterol distribution.
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