Public Health Advisory Related to WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree Pouches
BOSTON – Thursday, November 2, 2023 – The Boston Public Health Commission (BPHC) has issued a public health advisory related to the danger of lead exposure from the consumption of WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree Pouches. An investigation by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services into four cases of children with elevated blood lead levels lead to the identification of the fruit puree pouches as a source of lead exposure. Testing found them to contain lead levels that could result in acute toxicity.
The federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has reviewed the analysis and supports this conclusion. The FDA has issued a public health alert advising parents and caregivers not to purchase WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches or to feed them to toddlers and young children due to the risk of lead exposure. The manufacturer has agreed to voluntarily recalling all WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches, but it will take time for them all to be off store shelves.
WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches are sold nationally through multiple retailers including Amazon, Sam’s Club, and Dollar Tree. This advisory applies to all WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches, regardless of expiration date.
The Boston Public Health Commission advises everyone to avoid purchasing this product during the recall period. Anyone who has these fruit puree pouches should return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Children who have eaten this product should get a blood lead test from their pediatrician to check for lead exposure.
There is no safe level of lead in the human body at any age. Children are particularly at risk for lead poisoning because of their small size and growing bodies. Adults can also be injured by lead exposure on the job or through hobbies that use lead. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause long-term damage to a child, including developmental delay and learning impairment, making it difficult to learn, damaging to hearing and speech, and cause behavioral problems.
In Massachusetts, children must be tested for lead at 9 to 12-months old, and ages 2 through 4 if they live in a high-risk community, such as Boston. Parents of children under 6 years of age should talk with their child’s pediatrician to make sure the child is having regular routine blood lead testing so that elevated blood lead levels can be caught early and addressed. You can learn more about lead hazards and Boston Public Health Commission programs to address them at boston.gov/bphc-leadpoisoning, by calling BPHC at 617-534-5965, or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.