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What should I know about recalled baby formula?

Steven A. Abrams, MD, FAAP


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Certain baby formulas have been affected by recalls after possible contamination with harmful bacteria.

Here's what parents need to know about recent infant formula recalls and how to feed your baby safely.

Which baby formulas were recalled?

As of June 4, 2024, these brands of powdered baby formula distributed by Dairy Manufacturers Inc. were recalled:

  • CRECELAC INFANT Powdered Goat Milk Infant Formula with Iron, 0 to 12 months - Net Wt. 12.4 oz (352g)

  • Farmalac BABY Powdered Infant Formula with Iron 0 to 12 months Net Wt. 12.4 oz (352g)

  • Farmalac BABY Powdered Infant Formula with Iron Low Lactose 0 to 12 months Net Wt. 12.4 oz (352g)

Test samples of these formulas were found to contain Cronobacter bacteria, which can cause infants to become seriously ill.

Check the product codes on the bottom of the formula containers, or contact the company at 1-972-347-2341.

If your child is experiencing poor feeding, irritability, temperature changes, jaundice, grunting breaths, or abnormal body movements after consuming the recalled baby formula, see a health care provider for immediate care.

How can Cronobacter make my baby sick?

Infant formula contaminated with Cronobacter may not smell or look spoiled but can still make babies very sick. The same is true for contamination with Salmonella, another bacteria that has prompted baby formula recalls in recent years.

Cronobacter can cause a severe, life-threatening infection called sepsis. It can also cause meningitis (inflammation around the brain and spine). Symptoms of sepsis and meningitis may include poor feeding, irritability, temperature changes, jaundice (yellow skin and whites of the eyes), grunting breaths and abnormal movements. Cronobacter infection can also cause bowel damage.

Salmonella can cause stomach and intestinal illness including severe diarrhea, which can quickly cause dehydration in babies. More severe cases of Salmonella infection may include a high fever, aches, headaches, lethargy, a rash and blood in the urine or stool.

What should I do if my baby's infant formula is recalled?

If your formula is recalled, immediately stop feeding it to your baby. Do not throw the formula out. Instead, you should check the Food and Drug Administration recalls/safety alert webpage for instructions. You may be required to take the recalled formula to the store for a refund and exchange or call the company to help you.

If you are receiving WIC benefits, you should be able to obtain a different brand of similar formula. If there is any problem, call your WIC office for advice and assistance.

Do I need to talk to my pediatrician if I switch to a different baby formula?

This is a good idea, but for many formulas you can switch to a similar product made by another company including store brand formulas. Make sure to check the formula cans carefully; mixing instructions (how much water and formula to add to the bottle) can be different for different formula brands.

Can bacteria like Cronobacter and Salmonella spread in other ways when I'm feeding my baby?

Yes, Cronobacter and Salmonella bacteria can be found in unclean baby feeding supplies and in the environment, including unclean counter tops. Always follow good safety practices when preparing infant formula for your infant.

More information

Steven A. Abrams, MD, FAAP

Steven A. Abrams, MD, FAAP, is a board-certified pediatrician and neonatologist, and a Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Texas at Austin. Within the American Academy of Pediatrics, he is the former chair of the Committee on Nutrition. Dr. Abrams also serves on the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee and is editor-in-chief of Advances in Nutrition, published by the American Society for Nutrition.

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American Academy of Pediatrics (Copyright @ 2024)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.
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