It was a "consumer complaint" that triggered a recall of popular baby food products manufactured and sold in Canada earlier this month, leaving families no choice but to toss the pouches or return them to the store. There had been no reported illnesses associated with the products at the time of the original recall. Still, a manufacturing error discovered during a subsequent inspection caused a second wave of recalls a few days later, so it's still important to know how to tell if your PC Organics baby food was affected by the recall. After all, making sure that the food that ends up in babies' tummies is safe and nutritious is one of the most important aspects of keeping them healthy and happy.
[Update: In an email, PC Organics provided a statement to Romper: "Last week we proactively pulled all PC Organic baby food pouches from shelves and notified our customers. We are an industry-leader in quality assurance and we believe that maintaining customer trust in the safety and quality of our products is paramount. While the issue relates to a very small subset of products no longer available for sale, in the interest of maintaining our customers’ confidence in our brand, we welcome anyone with uncertainty about this product to return it for a full refund. In addition to our usual quality control checks, we are working closely with the vendor to ensure they are manufactured to our standards in the future."]
The recall started Feb. 3 and included just the President’s Choice (PC) Organics branded apple, blueberry, and green pea strained baby food flavors, which are sold in pouches with a twist-off cap. Following an ensuing inspection by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency soon after, though, all flavors of the product were ordered to be pulled from grocery store shelves, according to The Huffington Post Canada. And it was, of course, the right call: The inspection found that a "manufacturing error" had resulted in excess water in the product — creating an environment in which the toxin that causes botulism poisoning could manifest.
According to The Huffington Post Canada, all of the 128-mL pouches of the PC Organics baby food sold before Feb. 8 are subject to the recall. And on Feb. 8, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued the expanded recall notice in order to alert American consumers who may have purchased the products, including a comprehensive list of each of the recalled varieties of baby food. In order to know for sure whether your PC Organics baby food is part of the recall, health over to the FDA's webpage to compare UPC codes.
It's important to do, too, because botulism poisoning can be incredibly dangerous. And the toxin, Clostridium botulinum, "may not look or smell spoiled but can still make you sick," according to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Consumers of these products are urged to call their doctors if they believe they've contracted an illness from them. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, dizziness, blurred or double vision, dry mouth, respiratory failure, and paralysis — and, in some cases, even death.
The sheer breadth of the recall (remember, all the different flavors are included) means it's pretty easy to know whether the products you may have purchased are safe for consumption. To be sure, though, just double check with the FDA.