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Baby Food Recall Lawsuit: Baby Food Products Found to Contain Toxic Heavy Metals

Baby being fed baby food

A recent government report revealed high amounts of toxic heavy metals in various baby food brands. Such metals—arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury—pose significant neurodevelopment health risks for babies and children.

Specifically, these toxic metals are connected with autism and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in young children. Even at low levels, exposure can cause irreversible neurological damage to babies and children whose brains are still in the process of developing.

Parents who purchased these baby food products are shocked and outraged to learn that major baby food companies knowingly sold products tainted with heavy metals.

The affected manufacturers include Nurture, Inc., Beech Nut, Hain, Gerber, Campbell, Wal-Mart, and Sprout Organic Foods. A baby food recall has already been issued for one product line (Beech Nut infant rice cereal products), with several more likely to follow.

Legal action has been initiated to provide injured victims with damages for their losses, and to hold the manufacturers liable for their negligence. If you or someone you know were affected by toxic heavy metals in baby food products, contact Harlan Law at (619) 870-0802. We are currently investigating the issue in-depth and are accepting cases to pursue justice for victims nationwide.

Which Baby Food Brands Are Toxic?

The U.S. House of Representatives’ Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy released a report titled “Baby Foods Are Tainted with Dangerous Levels of Arsenic, Lead, Cadmium, and Mercury.” According to this report, several baby food manufacturers have their products linked with toxic heavy metals.

These include baby food products produced by the following manufacturers:

  • Walmart Inc. (Walmart), which sells baby food products through Parent’s Choice, its private brand
  • Campbell Soup Company (Campbell), selling products under the brand name Plum Organics
  • Sprout Foods, Inc. (Sprout Organic Foods), which is owned by North Castle Partners
  • Nurture, Inc. (Nurture), creator of Happy Family Organics, which includes baby food products under the brand name HappyBABY
  • Beech-Nut Nutrition Company (Beech-Nut), producer of infant rice cereal products that were subject to a voluntary baby food recall
  • Hain Celestial Group, Inc. (Hain), which sells baby food products under the brand Earth’s Best Organic
  • Gerber, maker of various cereals, snacks, baby food purees, and other products

Three of these main baby food companies—Walmart, Campbell, and Sprout Organic Foods—refused to cooperate fully with the Subcommittee’s investigation. According to their report, the Subcommittee is “greatly concerned that their lack of cooperation might be obscuring the presence of even higher levels of toxic heavy metals in their baby food products than their competitors’ products.”

What Types of Toxic Metals Were Found in the Baby Food Products? Why Are These Metals Dangerous?

The Subcommittee reports that several baby food products contain staggering levels of the following toxic metals:

  • Arsenic
  • Cadmium
  • Lead
  • Mercury

Exposure to such heavy metals can cause the following in children:

  • Autism
  • ADHD
  • Negative effects on neurological development
  • Long-term impairment of brain functions
  • Permanent decrease in IQ
  • Increased occurrences of criminal and antisocial behavior

Safe levels of exposure to these heavy metals for infants is essentially zero. However, for certain baby food products, the report found 177 times more than the acceptable level of lead, 91 times more than the acceptable level of arsenic, 69 times more than the acceptable level of cadmium, and up to 5 times more than the acceptable level of mercury.

Baby holding a bitten rice cracker

Which Baby Food Products Have Issues Involving Toxic Metals?

The baby food products identified in the Subcommittee’s report involve a wide range of foods, including:

  • Cereals
  • Snack puffs
  • Purees
  • Juices
  • Various other products

More specifically the report focused on baby food products that are high in rice content. These include snack puffs, crackers, cookies, and teething biscuits. Various rice puff products have been determined to contain high amounts of toxic metals, including Apple & Broccoli Puffs, Banana & Pumpkin Puffs, and other similar products.

Baby foods containing rice have been especially problematic with regard to arsenic levels. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed 100 ppb as the threshold for arsenic in infant rice cereals. Such guidelines were introduced only as recently as 2016; this level is still ten times greater than the arsenic levels currently allowed for bottled water.

If you aren’t sure of whether your child consumed recalled or tainted baby food products, contact us today at (619) 870-0802. Our law firm has the experience and resources needed to pursue your claim. We can determine whether there may be a link between the baby food products and the health of your child or loved one.

What Baby Food Is on Recall? Is Gerber Baby Food on Recall?

In June 2021, Beech Nut company voluntarily issued a baby food recall for its rice cereal product (Single Grain Rice Cereal, Item UPC 52200034705). They initiated the recall after routine sampling revealed that arsenic levels in the product were above the FDA’s maximum limit of 100 parts per billion.

In addition to the product recall, Beech Nut announced that it will no longer be selling infant rice cereal products and will be exiting the rice cereal sector for baby foods. The company is concerned about its ability to obtain rice flour that is below the FDA guidelines for naturally occurring inorganic arsenic.

So, what does this mean for parents and consumers?

As there may be issues with the sources of the rice flour used in baby food products, other recall announcements may soon follow. When purchasing or using any baby food products, be sure to check that they have not been subject to a baby food recall.

Other companies still have not recalled their products, so it may be possible that infants are still being exposed to contaminated baby food.

Gerber baby food and other brands are not on recall as of yet. However, concerned parents should visit the FDA’s recall announcement and alert page to stay updated with current information on recalls. If you are unsure of the status or safety of a product, contact a baby food recall lawyer for guidance.

Pursuing legal action allows you to contribute to increased health and safety for consumers and prevent such issues from happening in the future.

Is There a Toxic Baby Food Lawsuit?

Filing a baby food lawsuit can help injured and affected persons obtain the appropriate legal remedy. The damages or settlement amount obtained can provide financial relief for:

  • Long-term medical costs
  • Ongoing treatments and rehabilitative therapy
  • A loss of enjoyment of life
  • Expenses not covered by conventional insurance

Lawsuits can help bring about much needed change. Holding negligent companies liable for their actions can result in:

  • Product recalls to remove dangerous baby food products from shelves
  • Improved safety regulations for infant food products
  • Increased reform in the testing and approval of baby foods

Pursuing legal action allows you to contribute to increased health and safety for consumers and prevent such issues from happening in the future.

How Can a Lawyer Help Me With My Baby Food Injury Case?

The tragic part about baby food injuries is that they can cause permanent, life-long changes before the person even has a chance to live life fully. This can be incredibly stressful and challenging for the parent.

You may not know where to begin or how to understand the different legal issues involved. This is where the assistance of an experienced lawyer can be of great help. Your attorney can review your case and the research relevant laws to determine your legal rights and what can be done to bring justice to you and your family.

At Harlan Law, we provide each of our clients with the respect and personal attention they deserve when they trust us to handle their case. We create an environment where each client feels heard and kept up-to-date with their case. Also, we never charge any fees unless we are successful on your behalf. Contact our firm now at (619) 870-0802 schedule a free initial consultation to discuss your lawsuit with us.

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