Abbott Nutrition Contaminated Baby Formula

Posted by Thomas W. Keilty | Mar 28, 2022

Recently, there has been an investigation into the recall of baby formula by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Inside the Abbott Nutrition's Sturgis, Michigan facility, there has been a finding of Salmonella and Cronobacter sakazakii bacterial contamination with powdered infant formula. The FDA, along with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention and state and local authorities, are warning consumers not to purchase these products or use any of the powdered formula products produced at this facility.  Consumers typically do not consider contamination risk when purchasing formula.  We assume these companies utilize the best practices to ensure the safety of their products.  This is especially concerning for infants that rely on formulas as their sole source of nutrition.   

The Bacteria 

Cronobacter Sakazakii is a germ that can live in very dry places. It has been found in dry foods, like powdered infant formula, powdered milk, herbal teas, starches, and sewer water. The Cronobacter bacteria can cause severe, life-threatening infections such as sepsis or meningitis. Meningitis, which is an inflammation of the membranes that protect the brain and spine, can cause serious and permanent injury. Symptoms of sepsis and meningitis may be poor feeding, irritability, temperature changes, jaundice, grunting breaths, abnormal movements, bowel damage and spread through the blood to other parts of the body.  

These infections are incredibly serious for babies that can often lead to death. If an infant develops meningitis or sepsis, they can develop permanent injury to their brains, which will seriously affect their way of life in the future. 

The Recall 

The FDA is advising people not to use Similac, Alimentum, Elecare powdered infant formulas if they contain: 

  • The first two digits of the code being 22-37 
  • Code on container being K8, SH, or Z2 
  • An expiration date of April 2022 or later 

There have been four cases of either Cronobacter sakazakii or Salmonella contamination found in this investigation (Minnesota, Ohio, and Texas), and each has resulted in the hospitalization or death of an infant.  During the FDA's investigation they have found several additional samples contaminated with Cronobacter sazakii. 

So far, it has been reported that five infants have been hospitalized and two of them have tragically died due to these infections. The rare and dangerous germ of Cronobacter sazakii can cause infants to develop blood infections and other serious complications. These deaths could have been prevented if there were proper safety protocols in place to avoid contamination.  

If you, or someone you know, have been affected due to contaminated baby formula produced by Abbott Nutrition, please contact the experienced attorneys at Keilty Bonadio today for a free consultation. 

About the Author

Thomas W. Keilty

TJ Keilty represents individuals and families in cases involving complex products liability, medical malpractice, civil rights and the false claims act.  He is a true believer in the civil justice system and fights passionately to get his clients the compensation they deserve.  A calm demeanor an...

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