Enfamil maker recalls potentially contaminated baby formula

The recall affects about 2,200 Georgia WIC families.

The maker of Enfamil announced a recall of about 145,000 cans of infant formula due to the possibility of cross-contamination with a bacteria that can cause serious illness or death.

Reckitt, a U.K.-based consumer health and nutrition company, said over the weekend that it is voluntarily recalling two batches of Enfamil ProSobee Simply Plant-Based Infant Formula, but that no illnesses or “adverse events” have been reported. The company said it identified the cause of the potential cronobacter contamination and are no longer using the supplier.

According to the the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and prevention, cronobacter infections in infants can be deadly. The bacteria occurs naturally in soil, water and other parts of the environment and can live in dry foods, such as powdered milk, herbal teas, starches and baby formula.

Almost all previous outbreaks in the U.S. have been linked to powdered baby formulas, which don’t undergo the same high temperatures used to kill germs in many other foods. Cronobacter typically causes fever in infants and can sometimes lead to dangerous blood infections or swelling of the brain.

Last year, a nationwide baby formula shortage was triggered by an Abbott Nutrition plant that had to be closed for months because of contamination problems. Abbott recalled various lots of three powdered infant formulas from the plant, after federal officials began investigating rare bacterial infections in four babies who were fed formula. Two of the infants died. But it’s not certain the bacteria came from the plant; strains found at the plant didn’t match the two available samples from the babies.

The recall is for ProSobee Simply Plant-Based Infant Formula in 12.9 ounce containers, manufactured between August 2022 and September 2022. The batches in question can be identified by the number on the bottom of the can. Recalled product batches are ZL2HZF and ZL2HZZ, both with a UPC code of 300871214415 and a “Use by Date” of “1 Mar 2024.”

The recall affects about 2,200 Georgia WIC families. WIC participants and caregivers of infants who have purchased this product should contact Reckitt at 1-800- 479-0551 or by email at consumer.relations@rb.com. Products identified as part of this recall may be returned to a WIC clinic for replacement benefits. Participants also have the option to return recalled containers of formula to the place of purchase for an exchange or refund.

The alternative available for GA WIC participants is the 20.9 ounce size of the Enfamil ProSobee Simply Plant-Based Infant formula, which was not impacted by the voluntary recall.

Parents and caregivers of infants who have used the recalled product and are concerned about the health of their child should contact their pediatrician or health care provider. For more information, visit dph.georgia.gov/WIC or consumer.relations@rb.com