OLDSMAR, Fla — A local mom that purchased baby formula at an Oldsmar CVS says it was switched out for what looks and smells like all-purpose flour.
Alison Denning just had her third baby and says she's used formula many times before. She says when she went to the CVS to pick up a container of Enfamil baby formula the package looked fine, the protective seal was even intact on the lid.
But when she took it home and opened it up, she noticed something wasn’t right.
"The bag was in it like this, this particular sticker was not fully attached and when I opened it up this seal that wraps around was opened,” she said. "This smells like typical baking flour,” she added pointing to the container she says was tampered with.
She went to a different store and bout another container to compare the two.
"This one is a little bit more grainy, it’s a little harder to pack, it has a slightly yellow color to it,” she said about the second container.
She believes the first one was swapped out with all-purpose flour. CVS offered her a refund, but instead, she called the manufacturer, Mead Johnson, about getting it tested. The company sent a shipping box overnight and picked it up Friday.
"I’m not a doctor so I can’t say exactly what straight up flour would do to an eight-week infant but I can’t imagine it’s very good for them,” she said.
CVS says it plans on opening an investigation into the matter:
"The health and safety of our customers is our highest priority and we have robust quality assurance policies and procedures in place to ensure the quality and safety of the products we sell. We take our customer’s report of suspected tampering of Enfamil purchased at our Oldsmar store seriously. We will be contacting the supplier, and as a matter of precaution we have removed all Enfamil products from this store pending the outcome of our investigation."
The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office made a report and will follow up with Denning and CVS.
"I encourage anyone who is at a point desperate enough to switch formula to seek alternate ways then to either steal it and replace it because it’s not only immoral but it’s also dangerous for another child,” she said.
This has been reported in other states around the country — a woman was even arrested in Tucson after she was found guilty of swapping baby formula with flour at stores in that area, including at two Walmart’s. After ingesting the tampered formula, one baby got sick but is doing okay now, according to AP.
The FDA urges anyone with a food product issue to report it in its database, that way they can investigate and find out what happened.