EDITOR'S SPOTLIGHT: SCIENCE & REGULATION

Recall round-up: Drug-contaminated supplements and infant milk labelling

By Will Chu

- Last updated on GMT

©iStock/eartzen
©iStock/eartzen

Related tags: recall, Sildenafil, tadalafil

Infant milk and cumen product recalls are among a selection of notices issued by European food agencies last month as NutraIngredients rounds up the alerts that mention nutrition-related products.
Optimized-Volfort
Volfort food supplement.

In December, The Spanish Agency for Medicines and Health Products (AEMPS) highlighted the presence of pharmacologically active substances sildenafil and tadalafil in the ‘Volfort’ food supplement.

Originating from China and distributed by the company Eugenio Rodrigo Trujillo-Spain, the supplements contain enough sildenafil and tadalafil to “restore, correct or modify a physiological function exerting a pharmacological action, which gives it the legal status of medicine.”

AEMPS said in its recall notice​that these substances were not declared on their label, misleading consumers of the products’ plant-based origins.

“This product is presented as a natural product, hiding its true composition from the consumer,” ​authorities said adding that the product appeared to be mainly sold through online.

“In particular, the presence of sildenafil and tadalafil poses a risk for those individuals especially susceptible to adverse reactions with the consumption of PDE-5 inhibitors. 

“These individuals could use products of this type, purportedly natural and plant-based, as a theoretically safe alternative to authorised prescription drugs.”

Power Man problems

Poland’s State Sanitary Inspection also warns of the presence of sildenafil derivatives in the dietary supplement product ‘Power Man’.

Manufactured by Svenska Naturprodukter in Stockholm, Sweden and distributed by Warsaw-based Maxon, the affected supplement has a lot number of ‘2018017’ and expiry date ‘04/2021.’

In the recall notice​,​ the authority said that due to the declared origin of the product (Sweden), information on this matter has been reported to the European RASFF system.

“According to information from the Swedish authorities,

Optimized-Power Man
Power Man dietary supplements. ©Svenska Naturprodukter

Svenska Naturprodukter AB, Box 4059, 11452 Stockholm, is not legally active in Sweden - it is not registered as a food industry operator.

“A similar situation applies to the Polish entity responsible for distribution, i.e. MAXON ul. Suwalska 10 lok. 26, 03-352 Warsaw, which is also not registered as an entity in the food industry.

“So far, it has not been possible to contact the representative of the abovementioned companies.”

The Authority recommend for consumers not to consume the product batch indicated in the message.

They added that due to the ‘illegal’ activity of the distributor, it was also not recommended to consume other products marketed in Poland by this company.

Possible undeclared fish oil

Optimized-Starter_pack_front
HiPP's first infant milk starter pack. ©HiPP

UK-based organic baby food makers, HiPP issued a product recall​ for its first infant milk starter pack after the firm admitted there was a risk of some boxes being incorrectly labelled.

“As a precautionary measure, we are recalling first infant milk starter pack 6 x 90 millilitre (ml) with best before end dates of 9th Jan, 11th March and 5th April 2020,2 the firm said in its notice.

“We have discovered that, due to a packaging error, there is a risk of some boxes not having the correct allergy information on the cardboard box, although the presence of fish oil is declared on the inner 90ml bottles.

“The product itself is perfectly safe and meets all nutritional and compositional requirements but should not be fed to babies with a fish allergy.”

HiPP asked that consumers return the product to the store (this product can be found in Boots, Ocado and hipp.co.uk) where a full refund will be offered, with or without a receipt.

Gluten-containing cumin

Finally, The Spanish Agency for Food Safety and Nutrition (AESAN) warned​ of the ‘Ducros’ brand of ground cumin that contained gluten not declared on the label.

Available in 28 gram (g) containers, with the expiration date ‘06/23/2022’ and lot number ‘L9175A’ the agency said the product concerned had been manufactured in Spain and distributed in Madrid.

They added that as a precaution those with allergies or intolerance to gluten to refrain from consuming the product.

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