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More On Baby Food Recall

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Earth’s Best provides information hot line, 1-800-442-4221.

Earth’s Best has reported on its website that their recall of Wholesome Breakfast Apple Peach Barley 2nd Foods due to a potential contamination with Clostridium botulinum, was a voluntary precautionary measure. A small portion of 4.5 oz jars with lot code “F6J14NP” and expiration date “EXP 14 SEP 08 A” imprinted on the top of the jar were detected with incorrect pH levels according to their website posting.

Tainted products can usually be detected by a spoiled smell and discoloration after stirring. However to be safe, do not feed your baby or otherwise consume this product from the identified lot, even it if does not look or smell spoiled.

It only takes a very small amount, a few nanorgrams, of Clostridium botulinum to cause illness.

Early symptoms of foodborne botulism consist of marked lassitude, weakness and vertigo, usually 18 to 36 hours after ingesting food containing the toxin. Some cases have appeared as early as four hours and as long as eight days. Early symptoms are usually followed by double vision and progressive difficulty in speaking and swallowing. Other common symptoms include constipation, abdominal distention, difficulty in breathing and an overall weakness of other muscles.

Infant botulism symptoms begin with constipation followed by lethargy, weakness, pooled oral secretions, poor feeding, wailing or altered crying and loss of head control. Diagnosis of infant botulism is through the detection of botulinal toxins and the organism in the infant’s stools.

The incidence of the botulism is low, but the mortality rate is high if not treated immediately and properly. That is why the Food and Drug Administration always initiates a Class I recall (http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~lrd/recall2.html) when an outbreak is possible. In the Untied States there are 10 to 30 outbreaks a year. Because symptoms are usually transient or mild, many cases of botulism may go undiagnosed and unreported. Botulism is occasionally misdiagnosed as Guillain-Barre syndrome. http://www.cfsan.fda.gov/~mow/chap2.html

Class I Food and Drug Administration recalls are for dangerous or defective products that predictably could cause serious health problems or death.