Two French infant nutrition companies have announced in the space of 24 hours the withdrawal of several batches of baby food manufactured in a Spanish plant by Suspected salmonellosis.
The dairy giant Lactalis announced Friday the withdrawal of 16,300 bottles of Picot AR milk sold in pharmacy after November 29 of last year. It is the only batch removed, since only that comes from the same plant in northern Spain that also manufactured the products recalled the day before by another manufacturer, Sodilac, after the French authorities detected four cases of salmonellosis that they suspect could be linked to consumption of their products.
As announced by the Directorate General of Consumer Affairs, Competition and Repression of French Frauds (DGCCRF), the Pasteur Institute, national reference in the field of salmonellosis, has identified four cases of salmonella serovar poona (S.Poona) of genetically related strains. These are babies between two and ten months who became ill between the end of August and the end of December 2018. Three of them had to be hospitalized by Salmonella. Three other possible cases are still under investigation.
The Pasteur Institute found that all those affected had consumed, in the days before they had symptoms, "milk powder of the same brand produced by the same factory in Spain." It treats of infantile formula that the French mark Sodilac commercialises under the name of Modilac.
It is the only identical food or drink consumed by children, which has led experts to identify it as the source of the disease.
Thursday, the company announced the withdrawal of "its entire range of children's nutrition products based on rice proteins. " In addition, "as a precaution", the company decided to withdraw "also from the set of infant formulas manufactured in the affected Spanish factory, waiting for the origin of the problem to be established".
This Friday, Lactalis announced the withdrawal of the batch manufactured in the same plant. The company underlined that at this moment "there has been no warning of any health alert" regarding its product, but that it decided to withdraw it in a "preventive" manner under the "maximum precautionary principle". The dairy giant was forced last year to remove millions of batches of infant milk around the world after finding that the salmonellosis epidemic contracted by at least thirty babies had originally a strain found in their plant in Craon, in the northeast of France, and that was suspect in addition to other cases in previous years.
According to the DGCCRF, which has not identified the affected Spanish plant, "investigations are being carried out in collaboration with the Spanish authorities to define the measures to be adopted."