More Abbott baby formula recalled after reports of illnesses
Abbott has issued a recall for another lot of baby formula after an additional child who is believed to have consumed the formula fell ill and later died, the FDA said Monday. The recall affects one lot of Similac PM 60/40 that was made at Abbott Nutrition's Sturgis, Michigan, facility.
Parents should check any purchased formula for the lot code # 27032K80 (can) or # 27032K800 (case) and throw it away if it matches, the FDA said. Consumers can also use this link to check if they should throw away their formula.
The FDA said this lot is a special formula "for certain infants who would benefit from lowered mineral intake." It was not included in the previous recall.
"At this time, Similac PM 60/40 with lot code 27032K80 (can) / 27032K800 (case) are the only type and lots of this specialty formula being recalled," the FDA said.
The recall comes after the CDC announced that another infant who had been exposed to the formula was infected with Cronobacter sakazakii. The FDA said the Cronobacter infection "may have been a contributing cause of death." That infant was believed to have consumed product from the lot that is being recalled, the FDA said.
In a statement Wednesday afternoon, Abbott said, "Our top priority is the health and safety of the infants and children who depend on us. We value the trust parents place in us for high quality and safe nutrition and we'll do whatever it takes to keep that trust."
The cases are under investigation and at this time the cause of the infants' infections have not been determined. All infant formula products are tested for Cronobacter sakazakii, Salmonella and other pathogens and they must test negative before any product is released. Retained samples related to the complaints tested negative for Cronobacter sakazakii or Salmonella.
Complaints were received between September and January. In mid-February, evidence of Cronobacter sakazakii was found in non-product areas in the manufacturing plant. We took immediate corrective action, including initiating a voluntary recall on February 17.
Parents can find additional information at similacrecall.com or by calling 800-986-8540.
The recall also comes only 9 days after the company recalled multiple formulas made at the same Abbott facility, including Similac, Alimentum and EleCare, after four infants were reportedly diagnosed with cronobacter sakazakii or salmonella Newport. Parents are encouraged to check their formulas, as exposure to Cronobacter can cause sepsis and meningitis. Infants displaying symptoms of poor feeding, irritability, or fevers should receive immediate care.
In total, four infants have reported Cronobacter infections and one has reported a Salmonella Newport infection, according to the FDA. All five infants were hospitalized and two died, the FDA said.
"We understand that infant formula is the sole source of nutrition for many infants and is an essential product," the FDA said in an advisory Monday. "FDA is working with Abbott Nutrition to better assess the impacts of the recall and understand production capacity at other Abbott facilities that produce some of the impacted brands. We are also working with Abbott Nutrition on safe resumption of production at the Sturgis, MI facility."
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