WanaBana recall update: FDA sends warning letter to Dollar Tree over lead-contaminated cinnamon apple fruit puree

YAHOO! LIFE – Dollar Tree failed to pull lead and chromium-contaminated WanaBana cinnamon apple fruit puree pouches from its shelves in a timely manner, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday.

The FDA sent a warning letter to the discount store chain, which has more than 16,000 locations in the U.S. and Canada, following Dollar Tree’s voluntary recall of WanaBana’s products in November 2023 because unsafe levels of lead were discovered in its products.

However, public health officials “across many states” continued to see WanaBana cinnamon apple fruit puree pouches on store shelves months following, the FDA said.

A national recall of the WanaBana purees was announced in November after they were linked to dozens of cases of lead poisoning. Testing revealed that the cinnamon used in the apple cinnamon flavor was the source of the heavy metal contamination.

At least 90 cases of illness linked to the pouches across 32 states were reported, according to the FDA’s latest data. Two other brands of cinnamon applesauce products, Schnucks and Weis, also tested positive for unsafe levels of lead, as well as chromium. Further FDA investigation revealed that six brands of ground cinnamon were contaminated by lead.

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WanaBana complied with the FDA’s request for it to issue a voluntary recall of its cinnamon apple fruit puree pouches. The agency also asked retailers — including Amazon, Dollar Tree, Family Dollar and combination Family Dollar/Dollar Tree stores — that carried WanaBana products to voluntarily pull the products from their shelves.

But, according to the FDA’s latest updates, Dollar Tree, Inc. (which owns both Family Dollar and Dollar Tree stores), “failed to adequately remove recalled WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches from its store shelves,” the agency said.

“On December 18, 20 and 21, 2023, FDA again held calls with Dollar Tree to relay our concerns that your stores continued to have adulterated products on store shelves,” the letter reads as the last update.

The FDA states that to date, Dollar Tree has not provided the agency “with any information demonstrating that long-term, sustainable corrections have been implemented” …


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