State health officials recommend families check powdered infant formula

Recall issued for Similac, Alimentum, and EleCare powdered infant formulas

REMOTE, Feb. 18, 2022 – The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is advising parents who purchased Similac, Alimentum, or EleCare powdered infant formulas to check these products to ensure they are not part of a recent voluntary recall.

The FDA, along with CDC, is investigating four consumer complaints outside of Colorado of infant illness. The cases are related to products from Abbott Nutrition’s Sturgis, Michigan facility received from Sept. 20 2021 – Jan. 11, 2022. All of the cases are reported to have consumed powdered infant formula produced at this facility. These complaints include three reports of Cronobacter sakazakii infections and one report of Salmonella Newport infection in infants. No reported cases are in Colorado.

Cronobacter is a bacterium that can cause severe foodborne illness primarily in infants. Cronobacter infections are rare, but are especially high risk for newborns. Cronobacter bacteria can cause severe, life-threatening infections (sepsis) or meningitis (an inflammation of the membranes that protect 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. 

On Feb. 17, Abbott Nutrition initiated a voluntary recall of certain powdered infant formulas, which are sold nationwide. Recalled products can be identified by the 7 to 9 digit code and expiration date on the bottom of the package (see image here). Products are included in the recall if:

  • The first two digits of the code are 22 through 37, and

  • The code on the container contains K8, SH, or Z2, and

  • The expiration date is 4-1-2022 (APR 2022) or later.

Recalled product that meets all three of the listed criteria should be disposed of or returned to the store where it was purchased. 

If your child consumed recalled formula, monitor them for symptoms and seek medical care if they develop symptoms. Healthy infants do not need medical treatment or there is not a traditional screening test for Cronobacter. 

If your child is experiencing any of these symptoms, you should notify your child’s health care provider and seek medical care for your child immediately. 

The recall does not include liquid formula products or any metabolic deficiency nutrition formulas. Consumers should continue to use all product not included in the recall. Additional recall information is available on the FDA website. Parents can also enter their product lot code on the company’s website to check if it is part of the recall. 

More information on Cronobacter and infant formula is available on CDC’s website.

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