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Investigation of Elevated Lead Levels: Cinnamon Applesauce Pouches (November 2023)


Product Recalled cinnamon apple puree and applesauce products. Information on lot codes and UPCs can be found in the firm's recall announcement.

  • Realled WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches

  • Recalled Schnucks-brand cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety pack

  • Recalled Weis-brand cinnamon applesauce pouches

Symptoms of Lead Toxicity Lead is toxic to humans and can affect people of any age or health status. Protecting children from exposure to lead is particularly important because they are more susceptible to lead toxicity. Most children have no obvious immediate symptoms. Parents and caretakers should consult a healthcare provider if you suspect a child may have been exposed to lead. Short term exposure to lead could result in the following symptoms: headache; abdominal pain/colic; vomiting; anemia. Longer term exposure could result in the following additional symptoms: irritability; lethargy; fatigue; muscle aches or muscle prickling/burning; constipation; difficulty concentrating/muscular weakness; tremor; weight loss. Stores Affected

  • WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches are sold nationally and are available through multiple retailers including Amazon, Dollar Tree, and other online outlets.

  • Schnucks-brand cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety pack are sold at Schnucks and Eatwell Markets grocery stores.

  • Weis brand cinnamon applesauce pouches are sold at Weis grocery stores.

Status Ongoing; updates to this advisory will be provided as they become available. Recommendation

  • Consumers should not eat, sell, or serve recalled WanaBana, Schnucks, or Weis-brand apple cinnamon pouches and should discard them.

  • These products have a long shelf life. Consumers should check their homes and discard these products.

  • Most children have no obvious immediate symptoms of lead exposure. If there’s suspicion that a child may have been exposed to lead, parents should talk to their child’s healthcare provider about getting a blood test.

  • Contact your healthcare provider if you think you may have symptoms of lead toxicity after eating recalled fruit pouches.


Current Update

November 13, 2023

As reported in a safety alert issued by FDA on October 28, 2023, the FDA, along with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) and the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (NCDA&CS) are investigating reports of four children with elevated blood lead levels, indicating potential acute lead toxicity. The NCDHHS investigation identified WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree pouches as a potential shared source of exposure. As part of their investigation, NCDHHS analyzed multiple lots of WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree, detecting extremely high concentrations of lead. The FDA has reviewed and supports NCDHHS’s analytical findings and determined that levels of lead found in the analyzed pouches could result in acute lead toxicity.

As of November 13, 2023, there have been 22 reports of illness potentially linked to recalled product submitted to FDA. As part of this investigation, FDA and state partners are collecting and analyzing additional product samples of fruit puree and applesauce pouches. At this time, sample analyses have not shown elevated levels of lead in any non-recalled products.

On October 31, 2023, Wanabana LLC initiated a voluntary recall of all WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree Pouches. On November 9, 2023, Wanabana LLC expanded their recall announcement to include information on recalled Schnucks and Weis cinnamon applesauce pouches.

The recall impacts markets outside of the United States. Customer information provided by the firm shows that product was also distributed to Cuba and the United Arab Emirates.

Since the first alert was issued this investigation has been transferred to FDA’s Coordinated Outbreak Response & Evaluation (CORE) Network for additional follow up, in collaboration with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local partners. Two additional brands of products are also subject to recall: certain Schnucks cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety pack and certain Weis cinnamon applesauce pouches.

FDA is continuing to evaluate incoming adverse reports of illnesses. FDA’s investigation is ongoing to determine the source of lead contamination and whether additional products are linked to illnesses. FDA will update this advisory as information becomes available.

Case Counts Total Adverse Events: 22* Report Date Ranges: October 17, 2023 – November 7, 2023 States with Adverse Illness Events: AL (1), AR (1), LA (2), MD (1), MO (1), NC (5), NM (1), NY (2), OH (1), PA (1), SC (2), TN (1), TX (1) WA (1), Unknown (1) Product Distribution: Nationwide *Estimate based on Consumer Complaint and CFSAN Adverse Event Reporting System (CAERS) reports received by the FDA. Useful Links

  • FDA Safety Alert

  • NCDHHS Health Alert

  • WanaBana Recall Announcement

  • Expanded WanaBana Recall Announcement

  • Health Effects of Lead Exposure

  • Who to Contact

https://www.fda.gov/food/outbreaks-foodborne-illness/investigation-elevated-lead-levels-cinnamon-applesauce-pouches-november-2023

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