Reports from multiple states suggest that dozens of toddler illnesses are related to recalled applesauce. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), states are reporting high blood lead levels (BLLs) in children who have recently consumed the recalled products. Lead exposure in children is a serious health hazard.
In the article below, the children’s product liability lawyers at Kherkher Garcia provide parents with important information about the applesauce recall. We also provide information about the risks of lead exposure, and how parents can get help understanding their rights after a product-related injury or illness.
Applesauce Recall due to Lead Exposure Risk
There have been two recent applesauce recalls. The first recall was initiated in October, 2023, by Wanabana LLC, which voluntarily recalled all lots of WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Purée pouches due to reports of elevated levels of lead found in certain units of the product. The recall was expanded in November to include Schnucks-brand cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety pack, and Weis-brand cinnamon applesauce pouches.
The second recall was announced on November 14, 2023, by the New York State Department of Health, which recalled certain Weis Quality Cinnamon Apple Sauce Pouches sold in New York due to elevated lead levels.
In both recalls, the FDA has advised consumers to discard any recalled products and not to consume them. Consumers who have purchased recalled products can return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Here are some additional details about the recent applesauce recalls:
- WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Purée Pouches:
- UPC Code: 856894000010
- “Best By” date: 11/20/2024
- Schnucks-brand cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety pack:
- UPC Code: 0087140700269
- “Best By” date: 11/20/2024
- Weis-brand cinnamon applesauce pouches:
- UPC Code: 0027028405007
- “Best By” date: 11/20/2024
Lead is a toxic metal that can cause serious health problems, especially in children. Exposure to lead can damage the nervous system, kidneys, and red blood cells. In children, lead exposure can lead to developmental delays, learning problems, and behavioral problems.
If you are concerned about lead exposure, talk to your child’s doctor. There are tests available to measure lead levels in the blood. If your child has high lead levels, your doctor may recommend treatment.
Risks of Lead Exposure in Children
Lead exposure in children remains a significant public health concern, despite advancements in understanding and prevention. Exposure to this toxic metal poses severe risks to children’s health and wellbeing, affecting their physical, mental, and behavioral development. Understanding these risks is crucial to prevent and mitigate the detrimental effects of lead exposure.
Health Risks of Lead Exposure in Children
- Cognitive Impairment: High lead levels in children can impair cognitive function, affecting IQ levels, attention span, and academic performance.
- Behavioral Issues: Lead exposure has been linked to behavioral problems such as hyperactivity, aggression, and difficulties in impulse control.
Physical Health Impacts:
- Nervous System Damage: Lead is particularly harmful to the developing nervous system, potentially leading to neurological damage, seizures, and developmental delays.
- Anemia: Lead exposure can interfere with the body’s production of hemoglobin, leading to anemia.
- Kidney Damage: Prolonged exposure to lead can damage the kidneys, causing long-term health complications.
Other Health Implications:
- Growth Impairment: Lead exposure can hinder normal physical growth and development in children.
- Reproductive Issues: Even low levels of lead exposure may affect future fertility and reproductive health in both males and females.
Detection and Prevention
Early detection of lead exposure is critical. Pediatricians may conduct blood tests to identify lead levels in children at risk. Prevention strategies include:
- Regular Cleaning: Frequent cleaning and dusting can minimize exposure to lead-contaminated dust.
- Safe Renovation Practices: Utilize lead-safe work practices if renovating older homes with potential lead-based paint.
- Healthy Nutrition: Adequate intake of iron, calcium, and Vitamin C can help reduce lead absorption in the body.
- Drinking Water Testing: Regularly test drinking water for lead contamination, especially in homes with older plumbing systems.
Common Sources of Lead Exposure
Lead exposure primarily occurs through various sources prevalent in the environment. The most common sources include:
- Lead-Based Paint: Particularly in older homes built before the banning of lead-based paint in the late 1970s, deteriorating lead-based paint remains a significant source of exposure.
- Water Contamination: Lead pipes, plumbing fixtures, and solder in older homes can leach lead into drinking water, especially if the water has high acidity or sits stagnant in the pipes for an extended period.
- Soil and Dust: Lead-contaminated soil, often from past use of leaded gasoline, industrial activities, or deteriorated exterior paint, can be ingested or inhaled as dust, particularly in urban areas.
- Consumer Products: Some toys, jewelry, cosmetics, and other imported items may contain lead, posing a risk if children come into contact with or ingest these products.
Sadly, despite the efforts of the government and safety organizations, lead exposure continues to be a major risk for children. Product manufacturers continue to make and sell products that have higher-than-acceptable levels of lead. As in the case of the applesauce above, numerous children are ill due to their actions.
Holding Manufacturers Accountable for Lead Exposure
At Kherkher Garcia, we believe that children should never be harmed by dangerous or defective products. Our children’s product liability lawyers play a crucial role in helping families seek justice and hold manufacturers accountable for any harm caused by defective or dangerous products. Here are some examples of how our lawyers can assist you in pursuing accountability:
Expertise in Product Liability Laws
Our children’s product liability lawyers possess in-depth knowledge of product liability laws and regulations specific to children’s products. We understand the legal standards that manufacturers, distributors, and retailers must meet to ensure product safety. Our attorneys are well-versed in laws such as the Consumer Product Safety Act (CPSA) and other relevant state and federal regulations governing product safety standards.
Investigating Product Defects
One of the primary roles of our attorneys is to investigate and identify product defects that caused harm or injury to a child. We work with experts such as engineers, product safety specialists, and medical professionals to analyze the product, determine the defect, and establish a causal link between the defect and the child’s injury.
Our lawyers will carefully assess the chain of distribution to determine liability for your child’s injuries. We will scrutinize manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, and retailers involved in bringing the defective product to market. Establishing who is legally responsible for the defect is critical in seeking compensation for your child.
At Kherkher Garcia, we advocate for families affected by defective products to obtain fair compensation. Our lawyers will pursue legal action against liable parties through negotiation, mediation, or litigation. Compensation sought may cover medical expenses, ongoing healthcare costs, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other damages incurred due to your child’s injury.
Class Action Representation
In cases where multiple children were harmed by the same product defect, our children’s product liability lawyers might represent plaintiffs in class-action lawsuits. These collective legal actions allow affected families to join forces, increasing their leverage against large manufacturers and seeking justice on behalf of all affected parties.
Advocacy and Support
Beyond legal representation, the lawyers at Kherkher Garcia provide emotional support and guidance to families throughout the legal process. We act as advocates for your child and family, ensuring your rights are protected and that you receive the support and compensation you deserve.
Promoting Product Safety
Our children’s product liability lawyers contribute to improving product safety standards by holding manufacturers accountable for their negligence or failure to ensure product safety. By seeking accountability and compensation for affected families, we strive to encourage manufacturers to prioritize safety in their products to prevent future harm.
Is Your Child Ill due to Lead Exposure?
If your child is ill and you believe that lead exposure is the culprit, contact Kherkher Garcia as soon as possible. Our children’s product liability lawyers will help you understand your rights and determine if you have an actionable claim. Let us put our expertise, investigative skills, determination to pursue justice, and advocacy to work for your family.
To learn more about your legal rights and product liability claims, contact Kherkher Garcia for a free consultation with one of our lawyers. Call us at 713-333-1030, or fill out our online form to get started. Don’t wait to get the help you need to protect your child’s wellbeing.
- https://www.fda.gov/food/outbreaks-foodborne-illness/investigation-elevated-lead-levels-cinnamon-applesauce-pouches-november-2023?utm_medium=email&utm_source=gov delivery
- Image from the FDA