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Food Poisoning in the News: Earth's Best Baby Food

Consumers should not use certain jars of Earth's Best Organic 2 Apple Peach Barley Wholesome Breakfast baby food, because of the risk of contamination with a bacterium which can cause botulism, a life-threatening illness or death, according to an announcement from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on February 16, 2007.

Product Details and Recall Information

The affected product was sold in single individual jars and in variety packs (which contains 4 jars of the apple peach barley in the pack along with other varieties). The food is part of the firm's "2nd Vegetables, Fruits and Blends" line intended for babies 6 months and older. The food was distributed through retail stores and sold through the Earth's Best website. See the FDA Press Release for specific UPC codes and lid numbers for the affected jars.

Hain Celestial Food, the manufacturer of the affected baby food, distributed 4,072 cases of the specified individual jars consisting of 24 jars per case and 38,298 variety packs with the specified jars. Hain Celestial Food initiated a recall of the affected products on February 9, 2007, and the recall is still in effect.

No Reports of Botulism or Related Illness

As of February 20, 2007, no illnesses have been reported to FDA or the manufacturer to date in connection with this problem.

Botulism, a potentially fatal form of food poisoning, usually causes illness within 18-36 hours of exposure. Initial indication of illness in infants is decreased frequency or absence of stools. Other signs and symptoms noted are poor feeding, weak suck, lethargy, listlessness, weak cry, decreased body tone, and diminished overall movement. Caregivers or people observing these problems should seek immediate medical attention for those affected.

Advice for Consumers

Consumers are warned not to use the affected jars of baby food, even if the food does not look or smell spoiled. If consumers have any of the specified jars in their home, they should not use it and destroy it immediately. Consumers who have questions about the product or the recall should contact Hain Celestial Group at 1-800-434-4246.

Caregivers or people observing any unusual health problems in babies or others who have come into contact with the affected product should seek immediate medical attention for those affected.

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