H-E-B Baby Food Recalled after Consumer Complains of Rubber in Baby Food H-E-B brand baby food is issuing a recall after a consumer found a piece of rubber in the product. The recall affects the entire H-E-B Baby Food 2 pack 4 oz. cups product line. According to a Nov. 18, 2016 recall notice posted on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website, there have been no reports of injury or illness related to the recall.
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The recall was issued after a consumer reported “a small piece of rubber found inside a single container of one variety of the product.”
“Though we have only received one report of a foreign material in H-E-B Baby Food 2 pack 4 oz. cups, as a company, we are committed to absolute and complete food safety. As a result of that commitment, coupled with the fact that we are dealing with a children’s product, we have made the decision to pull all of our H-E-B Baby Food 2 pack 4 oz. cups from our shelves,” said Winell Herron, H-E-B Group Vice President of Public Affairs, Diversity and Environmental Affairs, according to the recall notice.
H-E-B says it is investigating the issue and working with its manufacturer to “ensure all safety measures are being taken when manufacturing the product”. The FDA has been notified of the recall.
Baby Food, Food Safety Recall Background
In April 2015, Beech-Nut Nutrition recalled roughly 1,920 pounds of baby food products because it may have been contaminated with small pieces of glass. According to a recall notice on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), the recall was issued after a consumer found a small piece of glass inside the baby food and notified Beech-Nut, based in Amsterdam, New York. The recalled baby food was associated with one report of an oral injury. The recall was designated as Class I, the FSIS’s most serious recall status. Class I recalls indicate a “reasonable probability that the use of the product will cause serious, adverse health consequences or death.”
In 2014, Heinz recalled nearly 1,500 boxes of baby cereal in China due to high levels of lead. The lead was identified following a regulatory inspection in Zhejiang province in Eastern China. The source of the lead stemmed from a batch of degreased soybean cereals, Heinz said. A spokeswoman for Heinz said the raw ingredient caused the product to “exceed the allowable limit for lead,”
“Extensive testing confirmed that no other Heinz Baby Food varieties are affected,” the company said.
Lead exposure has dropped substantially since the 1970s in the United States. The FDA routinely tests food products consumed by children. “Exposure to large amounts of lead, whether from food or any other source, can affect numerous body systems including the central nervous system, the kidneys and the immune system. In children, chronic exposure to lead, even at low levels, is associated with impaired cognitive function, including reduced IQ, behavior difficulties and other problems,” regulators state.
Parker Waichman notes that food recalls have recently been issued due to potential listeria contamination. Many brands of ice cream were removed from the shelves because they may be tainted with Listeria monocytogenes, a bacterium that can cause deadly infections in babies, elderly people and people with weakened immune systems. Pregnant women exposed to listeria can suffer miscarriage or still birth. Healthy individuals exposed to listeria may only experience high fever, severe headache, stiffness, nausea, abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Additionally, 4C Foods recently recalled its cheese products due to possible Salmonella contamination. The recall affects 4C Grated Cheese, Homestyle Grated Cheese, and Cento Grated Cheese Brands. Eating food contaminated with Salmonella can lead to serious illness. The elderly, children, and people with weak immune systems are particularly at risk. Salmonella poisoning can be fatal. Symptoms of Salmonella poisoning include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare cases, Salmonella can affect the bloodstream and lead to more severe illness.
Last year, a deadly Salmonella outbreak from tainted cucumbers affected 35 states; at least 700 became ill and four people died.
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