FDA warns parents to avoid infant formula distributed by Texas company due to contamination

U.S. health officials are warning parents to avoid a brand of powdered infant formula sold by a Texas dairy producer that may contain a dangerous bacteria

Matthew Perrone
Friday 31 May 2024 22:58 BST
Infant-Formula-Bacteria
Infant-Formula-Bacteria

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U.S. health officials warned parents to avoid powdered infant formula sold by a Texas dairy producer, because a dangerous bacteria was found in one of the company's products.

The Food and Drug Administration issued the alert Friday on Crecelac Infant Powdered Goat Milk Infant Formula, after a sample collected from a Texas store tested positive for cronobacter, which can cause deadly infections in babies. The same bacteria sparked recalls and shortages of infant formula in 2022 after it was detected at a major U.S. formula factory.

The Crecelac formula was imported and distributed by Dairy Manufacturers Inc., of Prosper, Texas, according to the FDA. Press releases from the FDA and the company did not specify where the product was produced or how widely it was distributed in the U.S. Messages left for the company Friday were not immediately returned.

Last week, the company voluntarily recalled the Crecelac formula and another brand, Farmalac, because they had not received approval by the FDA for sale in the U.S. Infant formula distributors are required to submit data to FDA regulators showing their products meet U.S. food and nutritional standards.

The FDA said testing of the Farmalac product did not detect cronobacter, but parents and caregivers should still avoid using the formula.

Cronobacter can cause blood infections and other serious complications in infants, including meningitis and nervous system injuries. The bacteria are found naturally in the environment and also can make their way into infant formula after packages are opened.

In 2022, FDA investigators shutdown an Abbott formula plant in Sturgis, Michigan, after inspections sparked by four infant illnesses linked to cronobacter, including two deaths, showed widespread contamination at the site.

Amid the shortages caused by the shutdown, the FDA began allowing imports of infant formula produced by overseas manufacturers. Previously the agency restricted U.S. infant formula production to a handful of domestic manufacturers, including Abbott.

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The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Science and Educational Media Group. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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