Abbott Nutrition Vietnam has decided to recall batches of Similac Gain Plus Eye – Q for infants aged 1-3 suspected of containing the Clostridium Botulinum germ that may cause muscle paralysis.
The company, the sole supplier of Similac Gain Plus Eye – Q imported from New Zealand, said it has recalled 10,135 out of 12,927 boxes of the canned Similac on the Vietnamese market.
Do Thai Vuong, international relations chief of Abbott Nutrition Vietnam, told Giao Duc Vietnam (Vietnam Education) news wire that consumers who are feeding their infants on Similac Gain Plus Eye – Q can exchange the milk at agents or call 19001519 for more support.
According to the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), infants with botulism appear lethargic, feed poorly, are constipated, and have a weak cry and poor muscle tone. If untreated, these symptoms may progress to cause paralysis of the respiratory muscles, arms, legs, and trunk.
Vuong confirmed that Abbott has yet to receive any petitions from consumers, but decided to recall the product for the sake of consumers’ health. Other Abbott products are not affected by the recall.
Similac Gain Plus Eye – Q is distributed in all provinces and cities across the country.
Earlier, Abbott Nutrition Vietnam asked local consumers to exchange or return Similac Gain Plus Eye – Q manufactured by Fonterra Group – a partner of Abbott based in New Zealand.
The recall was made after Fonterra found a small amount of whey protein used to manufacture Similac Gain Plus Eye – Q may be infected with Clostridium Botulinum.
The Vietnam National Food Administration warned that Clostridium Botulinum may be found in 11 batches of Gain Plus Eye – Q for infants aged 1-3 imported into Vietnam since July 2013.
The batches are coded 2564G54114, 2564G54115, 2564G54116, 2564G54117, 2564G54118, 2565G54118, 2565G54119, 2566G54119, 2566G54120, 2567G54120, and 2676G54120.
It also recommended that mothers stop feeding their children on this type of milk and watch if their children have any symptoms of diarrhoea and vomiting.
The food safety watchdog asked importers and manufacturers of dairy products to make reports on materials imported from New Zealand, especially from Fonterra.
Local milk companies said they have not purchased any dairy materials from Fonterra.
Bui Thi Huong, foreign relations director of the Vietnam Dairy Products Joint Stock Company (Vinamilk), said her company has purchased materials from the US, Denmark, and other European countries, not Fonterra.
Tran Huu Duc, in charge of international relations of Nutifood Company, also confirmed that the company has not imported any materials from this NZ group.