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These Infant Formulas Are Being Recalled After Four Babies Have Fallen Ill

Find out all you need to know about this dangerous recall.
FACT CHECKED BY Faye Brennan

An urgent notice against three different types of infant formula is being investigated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) after four babies have fallen ill from the products. 

Abbott Nutrition is voluntarily recalling select lots of Similac, Alimentum, and EleCare formulas that were manufactured at an Abbott facility in Sturgis, Michigan. Across three states, three infant illnesses and one death have been reported involving the powdered formula. 

The formulas were shipped from Michigan across the U.S. as well as to other countries, the FDA said. This news comes as many infant formulas are plummeting in supply

"The FDA is investigating complaints of four infant illnesses from three states," the FDA said in a statement. "All four cases related to these complaints were hospitalized and Cronobacter may have contributed to a death in one case."

Mother in pink lace dress holding her 1 week old little baby
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According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Cronobacter is a type of bacteria that can live in dry foods such as powdered milk, herbal teas, and starches. "Cronobacter can cause diarrhea and urinary tract infections in people of all ages, but infection can be very serious in infants," the agency notes. 

Coming in contact with Cronobacter can cause sepsis and meningitis in babies—which can be deadly. The recall also entails a potential Salmonella exposure to the formulas, which can cause gastrointestinal illness and fever. 

"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," said Frank Yiannas, FDA Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response. "We want to reassure the public that we're working diligently with our partners to investigate complaints related to these products."

What Parents and Caregivers Need to Know

Courtesy of Abbott

The recalled powdered infant formula includes the brand names Similac, Alimentum, and EleCare. 

The affected products codes, located on the underside of the formula container, have the first two digits of 22 through 37, and the code on the container contains "K8," "SH," or "Z2." The expiration dates are April 1, 2022 or later. 

To find out if the product you have is included in this recall, visit similacrecall.com and type in the code on the bottom of the package, or call 1-800-986-8540 and follow the instructions provided, the formula brand noted in a press release. If you have any of the affected products in your pantry, throw them away immediately or return them to the store for a refund. 

"Parents and caregivers of infants who have used these products, and are concerned about the health of their child, should contact their child's health care provider," the FDA noted. "If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, you should notify your child's healthcare provider and seek medical care for your child immediately."

For more recent recall news, read up on These 4 Grocery Items Are Being Recalled Nationwide.

Kristen Warfield
Kristen Warfield is the weekend editor for Eat This, Not That! and is a graduate of SUNY New Paltz’s journalism program in the Hudson Valley region of New York. Read more
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