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Friday, 10 June 2016 18:51

Nature Made vitamins, Blue Bell ice-cream recalled – Consumer Affairs Commission

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The Consumer Affairs Commission (CAC) has alerted the Jamaican public to a CNN report “that there is a massive recall of Blue Bell Ice Cream as well as Nature Made vitamins”.

According to CNN manufacturers Pharmavite LLC issued a statement on Tuesday of this week that “several types of Nature Made vitamins are being recalled due to possible Salmonella Staphylococcus aureus contamination”.

The Pharmavite press release said: We are initiating this recall out of an abundance of caution to protect public health. Pharmavite is working closely with the FDA to implement this recall and we are notifying all retail customers and distributors to remove the product from store shelves immediately. No other products are impacted by this recall. The recalled products were distributed nationwide to various major retailers.

Salmonella, an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

The presence of Staph aureus toxin in food may lead to food poisoning. The onset of symptoms in staphylococcal food poisoning is usually rapid and in many cases acute, depending on individual susceptibility to the toxin, the amount of contaminated food eaten, the amount of toxin in the food ingested, and the general health of the victim. The most common symptoms are nausea, vomiting, retching, abdominal cramping, and prostration. Some individuals may not always demonstrate all the symptoms associated with the illness. In more severe cases, headache, muscle cramping, and transient changes in blood pressure and pulse rate may occur.

The following products are included in the recall:

The lot number can be found on the back panel next to the expiration date. Products that fall within the lots indicated should not be consumed. Consumers are encouraged to return the affected products to their retailer for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company during normal business hours, Monday through Friday, 7:00 am to 5:00 pm PST at 1-800-276-2878.

The recall was initiated after it was discovered that Salmonella and/or Staphylococcus aureus testing were not completed properly on these specific batch lots. Pharmavite has identified the cause of the error, is taking the matter very seriously and has implemented corrective actions to rectify the issue. Pharmavite cares deeply about the health and safety of consumers and we apologize for any inconvenience.

Illness can last four to seven days and most people recover on their own. Salmonella causes an estimated one million cases of illness every year in the United States.

The CAC has also alerted Jamaicans to the massive outbreak of the deadly listeria bacteria in the United States, which has seen Blue Bell recalling its entire product line. Listeria grows well in cool temperatures and can cause fever and aches as well as stomach problems and diarrhea.

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