The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said on Thursday that the health agency is investigating multiple reported cases of Cronobacter and Salmonella infections that have been reported. Officials say all of the reported cases came after powdered infant formula was consumed.
The formula came from Abbot Nutrition's Sturgis, Minnesota facility, the FDA said in a statement. The agency is advising consumers to stop using certain powdered formula products from the brands Similac, Alimentum and EleCare.
Consumers are advised to look out for the following numbers in product codes on the packaging to determine which products in their homes to throw away, the FDA said:
- the first two digits of the code are 22 through 37; and
- the code on the container contains K8, SH or Z2; and
- the expiration date is 4-1-2022 (APR 2022) or later.
If you're unsure if your formula is involved in Abbott's voluntary recall, you can check your product's lot number on Abbott's website here.
There have been four illnesses so far, three of those were Cronobacter infections and one of them was Salmonella. According to the FDA, Cronobacter may have contributed to a death in one case.
States, where people were infected, include Minnesota, Ohio and Texas.
The FDA says their investigation is still ongoing and the company is working with the health agency to voluntarily recall the products in question.
Frank Yiannas, FDA Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response said in a statement, “As this is a product used as the sole source of nutrition for many of our nation’s newborns and infants, the FDA is deeply concerned about these reports of bacterial infections.”
Yiannas said, “We want to reassure the public that we’re working diligently with our partners to investigate complaints related to these products, which we recognize include infant formula produced at this facility, while we work to resolve this safety concern as quickly as possible.”
Cronobacter bacteria can cause severe, life-threatening infections and Salmonella bacteria can cause gastrointestinal illness and fever and can sometimes be fatal.
If you have any of the products contained in the voluntary recall you are advised to throw them away or take them back in a plastic bag to the point of sale for a refund.