In North Carolina, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recalled pureed fruit pouches that are thought to be causing increased levels of lead in the blood of children in the state. The brand WanaBana is what has been recalled, specifically the apple cinnamon flavor. There has been an official advisory released, advising those to not buy or give this pureed fruit to young kids.
The WanaBana fruit pouches can be purchased nationally in several major chain stores.
The FDA recall comes after they worked on an investigation with North Carolina health officials, local health departments, as well as the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. During the investigation, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services ran tests on countless pouches, all of them showing extremely high and concerning levels of lead. The lead was also extremely concentrated. The investigation came as a result of many children in the state showing high levels of lead in their blood. The health department of the state had this information as all lead blood test results are meant to be reported under law.
Investigations are called for when a child under the age of six years old has two consecutive blood tests done, each showing results of having at least five micrograms per deciliter in their blood. When this is the case, a home investigation should take place, with North Carolina health officials holding responsibility to find the root of the issue. This happens as they want to get ahead of any widespread issues, such as what is seen with the WanaBana recall, or confront any issues at home that are generating the high lead levels.
The FDA warns that high levels of lead in the blood can and will affect anyone.
Regardless of factors like health and age, lead can be a harmful thing to have in the bloodstream. The thing that is concerning for many is there are some noticeable symptoms that arise quickly, but they do not always happen, and, without any symptoms, one can only diagnose the issue via a blood test.
With that said, the symptoms that may arise are headache, abdominal pain, colic, vomiting, and anemia. These symptoms are ones that arise after short-term exposure. In addition to these possible symptoms, long term exposure can lead to irritability, lethargy, fatigue, muscle aches, constipation, tremors, weight loss, and difficulty concentrating.
WanaBana is cooperating with the FDA and will voluntarily recall the apple cinnamon flavor of their fruit pouches.