Nationwide Applesauce Recall: Sickening Kids from Coast to Coast
Updated: A North Carolina family is suing a Florida-based applesauce maker and retail giant Dollar Tree, claiming both companies failed to ensure certain applesauce pouches marketed toward children were safe before putting them on store shelves.
As of January 26, 2024, the CDC says it has received 404 reports from 43 states of possible lead poisoning due to the fruit pouches. Nearly 100 of them have been confirmed, 269 are probable, and 37 are considered suspected.
If you’ve purchased this applesauce, then don’t miss this recall! The FDA and CDC have warned that some applesauce is contaminated and can make you or your children sick if eaten.
What is a Recall?
Understanding Food Safety Recalls in the United States
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) are responsible for investigating potential issues surrounding food safety in the United States. If a problem is detected, both agencies may issue public warnings. In particular, a recall by either the FDA or CDC indicates that the product in question is unsafe for consumption due to a specific reason. Based on the particular threat, guidelines and instructions are given for each recall. For example, consumers may be warned not to consume the product, or the company may offer refunds for the purchase price.
Why is There a Recall?
On October 31, 2023, WanaBana recalled all WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches regardless of expiration date and lot code as part of an ongoing FDA investigation into lead-contaminated food products.
On November 9, 2023, WanaBana expanded their recall. Two additional brands of products are also subject to recall: 1) certain Schnucks cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety packs and 2) certain Weis cinnamon applesauce pouches.
Data updated as of December 1, 2023.
CDC has received the following reports from state and local health departments:
- Total Reports: 400+
- 43 States: CDC data shows reported lead poisoning cases have been reported in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, Montana, North Carolina, North Dakota, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and West Virginia.
- Recall: Yes
- Investigation status: Active
Here’s another related, recent applesauce recall.
What is The Problem?
Lead exposure in children can lead to learning and behavior problems, hearing and speech problems, and slowed growth and development. Even low levels of lead can cause lower IQ and underperformance in school. Acute lead poisoning can cause abdominal pain, constipation, nausea, anemia, weakness, fatigue, seizures, encephalopathy, and coma.
We recommend that you refer to the CDC notice for more specific instructions.
Which Product(s) are Included in this Recall?
WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree in 3-pack pouches of 2.5 oz.
Schnucks Apple Sauce 90g pouches with cinnamon. The affected Schnucks lots subject of the product recall were identified as 05023:19, 09023:22 and 09023:24.
Weis Cinnamon Apple Sauce 90g, reported an affected lot number 05023:28, which is also included in the product recall.
Be sure to check with the CDC for the most recent updates and additions.
Where Was the Recalled Product Sold?
The fruit puree pouches linked to the outbreak were sold under the WanaBana brand at Dollar Tree stores and online, as well as under the Schnucks and Weis brands in stores.
What Should Consumers Do?
Do not eat any recalled apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches. Throw them away or return them to where you bought them.
Call your healthcare provider about getting a blood test for lead if you or your children may have consumed recalled products.
What Should Businesses Do?
Do not sell or serve recalled apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches.
To properly discard the product, retailers should carefully open the pouch and empty the content into a trash can before discarding the packaging to prevent others from salvaging recalled products from the trash.
Clean up any spills after discarding the product, and then wash your hands