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Toxic Baby Food Lawsuit Client Focused. Trial Ready. Billions Won.
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Toxic Baby Food Lawsuit

Baby Food Lawsuit Update May 2024

Wisner Baum attorneys represent thousands of children suffering from autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder after being exposed to dangerously high levels of heavy metals in baby foods. In 2024, baby food lawyer and Wisner Baum managing partner R. Brent Wisner was appointed co-lead trial counsel in the toxic baby food MDL (multidistrict litigation). 

The baby food lawsuit alleges multiple baby food companies knowingly sold — and continue to sell — products tainted with heavy metals that can cause brain damage. Specifically, brain damage that manifests as diagnoses of autism spectrum disorder and ADHD. The companies charged in the lawsuit include:

Wisner Baum is in active litigation against the baby food companies listed above. To see if your child qualifies for a baby food lawsuit, fill out our confidential case evaluation form or call our legal team at (855) 948-5098 to schedule an appointment with a baby food lawyer who can answer all your questions.

BABY FOOD LAWSUIT – HEAVY METALS ARE A “MAJOR PUBLIC HEALTH CONCERN” 

It is not just lawyers alleging neurodevelopmental harm in baby food lawsuits; numerous public health agencies and medical professional organizations agree that exposure to toxic heavy metals is particularly dangerous for young children.

Heavy metals pose a “major public health concern” for children. --World Health Organization (WHO)

Heavy metals “may build up in biological systems and become a significant health hazard.” Noticeable consequences of exposure could be delayed for years. --Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)

Arsenic is number one among environmental substances that pose the most significant potential threat to human health, followed by lead (second), mercury (third), and cadmium (seventh). --Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR)

No level of exposure to these heavy metals has been shown to be safe in children. --American Academy of Pediatrics

We are currently evaluating claims for children diagnosed with severe ADHD 15 years old and younger; for Autism 10 years old and younger. Please call us toll free at (855) 948-5098 to see if you may qualify for legal action.

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Baby Food Lawsuit Update

May 17, 2024: The judge overseeing the toxic baby food multidistrict litigation (MDL 3101) appointed baby food attorney R. Brent Wisner co-lead trial counsel representing plaintiffs alleging heavy metals in baby food caused children to develop autism and/or ADHD.

Wisner will co-lead the baby food MDL with Aimee Wagstaff of the Wagstaff Law Firm. Wisner Baum baby food lawyer Monique Alarcon will serve as Plaintiffs' Liaison Counsel, and attorney Pedram Esfandiary was also appointed to the Plaintiff's Steering Committee. 

After the leadership was announced, R. Brent Wisner gave the following statement to the media:

"Ensuring the safety of baby food is paramount for our children's well-being, and I am honored to lead this critical MDL. The evidence we've gathered over the past two years is compelling, and we are prepared to present a robust case to secure justice for the families affected. This litigation is not just about compensation; it's about protecting the health and future of our children. When food companies make billions selling food containing poison—food that is simply unfit for human consumption, let alone a baby's consumption—there needs to be accountability. This litigation is a first step in dealing with a generation of babies that have been poisoned and now face an epidemic of autism.”

More than two dozen toxic baby food lawsuits are consolidated in the MDL (Case No. 3:24-md-03101-JSC) before U.S. District Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley for the Northern District of San Francisco. Judge Corley’s pretrial order can be read here

April 11, 2024: The Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) issued an order today consolidating 25 federally filed baby food cases. The newly formed MDL No. 3101, In re: Baby Food Products Liability Litigation, will be overseen by the Honorable Jacqueline Scott Corley for the Northern District of California. Wisner Baum managing partner, R. Brent Wisner, who argued before the JPML in March, issued this statement following the establishment of the Baby Food MDL:

“We are excited about the JPML's ruling. We have been assigned a smart and accomplished jurist and we think the Northern District of California is the right venue for this case. The next step is to get this MDL organized and get the new judge up to speed on the two years of litigation we have already done. This mass tort is going to end up being one of the most important litigations in recent history. Baby food must be safe, and these Defendants not only know that some of their products aren't, but they refused to be honest with parents about it. It’s difficult to fathom the scope of brain injury that has been inflicted on babies in this country. This MDL is the first step in taking account of the full scope of that damage and, hopefully, finding some justice for the children whose lives have been forever disadvantaged.”

April 2, 2024: Last week, the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) held a hearing to discuss the possibility of forming a toxic baby food multidistrict litigation (MDL). If the panel grants an MDL, federal cases would be consolidated in one court. Our baby food lawyers anticipate news on the MDL within the next few weeks. 

March 21, 2024: Next week, a panel of federal judges is scheduled to hold a hearing to review a previous decision on whether lawsuits about toxic baby food should be consolidated in a federal multidistrict litigation (MDL). The March 28th hearing will be the second time in recent years that the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation (JPML) has considered combining these lawsuits. We will provide an update once there is news to report. 

February 6, 2024: Baby food lawyers filed a motion at the start of 2024 to consolidate cases into a multidistrict litigation (MDL). An MDL shares similarities with a class action lawsuit; both are types of legal proceedings that involve multiple plaintiffs with similar claims. But there are key differences between the two.

In an MDL, individual lawsuits that are filed across different federal courts are consolidated and transferred to a single court. This centralization aims to streamline the litigation process by efficiently managing pretrial proceedings, such as discovery. However, MDLs do not merge individual lawsuits into a single trial. Instead, each case retains its own individuality and is ultimately returned to its original court for trial or settlement.

On the other hand, a class action lawsuit is filed on behalf of a group of individuals, known as the class, who have suffered similar harm or injuries caused by the same defendant or defendants. Class actions consolidate the claims of all class members into a single lawsuit, with one or more named plaintiffs representing the entire class. The final judgment in a class action generally binds all class members unless they opt out of the class.

January 2, 2024: This year we plan to take a baby food lawsuit to trial. Since September of 2023, the attorneys at Wisner Baum have filed five baby food lawsuits in Los Angeles County, California. We plan to ask for a consolidated preference trial for all five cases in the coming months. If the litigation progresses according to plan, we should have a baby food trial scheduled in the summer of 2024. 

Wisner Baum’s case will not be the first baby food trial as there was a trial in Texas that resulted in a directed verdict. A directed verdict is a ruling entered by a trial judge after determining that there is no legally sufficient evidentiary basis for a reasonable jury to reach a different conclusion. Of note, this was not a baby food autism lawsuit, it was a brain damage case.

Other law firms have filed baby food lawsuits in state and federal courts. As of today, there are not enough cases to form a multidistrict litigation, but that could soon change. 

Our baby food lawyers will update this page when trial information becomes available. 

December 1, 2023: Lawmakers, including Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar, sent a letter to the FDA calling for more action on protecting infants and young children from the dangers of heavy metals. The letter, which was also signed by Sen. Tammy Duckworth, Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi, Rep. Tony Cárdenas, Rep. Katie Porter, Rep. Sean Casten, Rep. Rosa DeLauro, and Rep. Jason Moskowitz, cited a recent voluntary baby food recall on apple sauce pouches due to “elevated lead levels.”

According to the lawmakers, a reported 52 cases of elevated blood lead levels in children were potentially linked to Apple Cinnamon Fruit Puree pouches sold under the brand names Schnucks, WanaBana, and Weis. WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Puree was found to contain lead levels at 2.18 parts per million, roughly 200 times greater than the action level the FDA proposed in the agency’s draft guidance for baby foods.

The letter closes by urging the FDA to take swift action by finalizing industry guidance for heavy metals in baby food, including food puree pouches like those recently recalled.  

November 2, 2023: In a groundbreaking move, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a new law that mandates baby food manufacturers to conduct rigorous testing for dangerous heavy metals and make the results public on their websites. The law, which is the first of its kind in the nation, aims to safeguard infants and toddlers from the detrimental effects of toxic levels of heavy metals found in commonly used baby food products. Starting in 2024, baby food manufacturers will be required to conduct monthly tests on a representative sample of each product for arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury. If the FDA establishes an action level limit for any of these toxic elements, the test results must also be disclosed through a QR code on the product's label starting in 2025.

While the FDA's Close to Zero Initiative sets action levels for these heavy metals, it currently neglects to demand final product testing to ensure manufacturers' compliance with these limits. Moreover, companies are not required to inform consumers about their test results. With the new law, California will lead the way when it comes to protecting children from toxic metals. 

Research indicates that even minimal exposure to heavy metals, especially lead, during infancy, can heighten the risk of numerous health issues such as lowered IQ and behavior problems, as well as conditions like autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. According to a 2018 study published in Lancet Public Health, low levels of lead from various sources, including food, contributed to over 400,000 deaths annually.

October 2, 2023: Lawmakers in California recently passed a bill that would require baby food companies that sell their products in the state to “test a representative sample of each production aggregate of the manufacturer’s final baby food product” for mercury, arsenic, lead, and cadmium each month. The bill (AB 899) would also require baby food companies to label their products with QR codes for consumers to scan and view heavy metals testing results. If signed into law, California would become the first U.S. state to enact baby food testing requirements aimed at protecting children from toxic metals. 

The monthly heavy metals testing requirement in the bill could take effect as soon as January 2024 with the QR code requirement following in 2025.

September 19, 2023: We are undeterred by a recent ruling in the Cantabrana baby food case (details below), and are actively litigating and plan to take a case to trial in the coming months. Our firm remains committed to accepting cases on behalf of children diagnosed with autism and/or ADHD after consuming foods from Gerber, Earth’s Best Organic, Walmart, and others. 

We recently published a blog (How to File a Baby Food Lawsuit) to help parents understand their legal rights. It answers the most common questions related to this litigation, such as who qualifies for a lawsuit, diagnosis criteria, and more. If you still have questions, you can always call our offices. We will be happy to assist you.

September 1, 2023: Last week, the judge overseeing our California baby food case set for trial on October 4, 2023, decided to exclude the opinion of one of the plaintiff’s experts, which was relied on by another expert. The decision effectively put an end to the Cantabrana family's case, though it will not directly impact the baby food litigation as a whole. 

While this is clearly not the result we anticipated, the judge did allow our general causation expert opinions, i.e., that heavy metals in baby foods could cause autism and ADHD. The judge, who referred to our experts as “stunningly qualified” and called them “very impressive people of science[,]” believes the vast majority of the opinions should be sent to a jury. 

We represent more than 3,500 children diagnosed with autism and/or ADHD after consuming baby food contaminated with egregiously high levels of arsenic, lead, and mercury. The viability of these cases has been established by the science and we very much look forward to getting a baby food case to trial. We plan to file another case quickly and seek a preference trial under the California statute, which allows for a trial date within four months. 

August 1, 2023: Consumer Reports published another troubling analysis on heavy metals in baby food. CR's report found that brands like Gerber, Earth's Best Organic, and others still test high for arsenic, lead, and mercury. These heavy metals have been associated with developmental disorders such as autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Per the CR report, the products with the highest levels of toxic heavy metals were snack foods, as well as those containing rice and sweet potatoes. Despite claims by baby food companies that they are addressing the problem, the latest baby food report suggests that the industry is still not doing enough to protect children from harm. Read more about the latest baby food report in our blog.

June 14, 2023: A new study published in the journal Food and Chemical Toxicologyconcluded that exposure to toxic heavy metals during the critical stage of brain development can be harmful, even at low dosages. According to the authors, exposure to lead, cadmium, and mercury “decreased the density of memory—and learning-related dendritic spines in the hippocampus during the critical period of brain development, resulting in hippocampus-dependent spatial memory deficits.

May 18, 2023: As we prepare for our upcoming baby food trial in October, more and more research is coming out showing high levels of toxic heavy metals in foods and beverages consumed by young children. A new study published in the Journal of Food Composition and Analysis concluded that many popular fruit juices and soft drinks contain high levels of toxic heavy metals linked to autism and ADHD. The researchers analyzed 60 widely available fruit juices, sodas, and soft drinks. According to the study, more than half of the products contained at least one toxic metal that exceeded the allowable limits for drinking water.

March 16, 2023: The Cantabrana baby food trial, which was scheduled to begin in May, has been moved to October 4, 2023. This will likely be the first baby food autism lawsuit to go before a jury in California state court.

More and more parents throughout the country are filing lawsuits against Gerber, Hain (Earth’s Best Organic), Walmart, and other baby food companies alleging exposure to heavy metals in certain baby foods caused their children to develop autism or ADHD. As of March 2023, Wisner Baum represents over 3,000 clients in the toxic baby food litigation.       

January 5, 2023: Bloomberg Law interviewed Wisner Baum baby food lawyer Pedram Esfandiary and client Melissa Cantabrana about the upcoming trial in May 2023. It will be the first baby food autism lawsuit to go before a jury. According to Esfandiary, baby food companies like Gerber, Earth’s Best Organic, Happy Family Organics, and others need to be taken to court to force change in the industry. “I really want justice for my son, for my family,” Melissa Cantabrana said in the article. “I want them to pull the baby foods off the shelves.”

GERBER, HAPPY BABY, AND OTHER COMPANIES NAMED IN BABY FOOD AUTISM LAWSUITS

A U.S. Congressional Subcommittee reported that numerous popular baby food products, including infant rice cereal, teething biscuits, purees, rice cakes, and others, contain “dangerously high levels” of arsenic, mercury, lead, and cadmium. Shockingly, Happy Family Organics, Gerber, Hain Celestial (Earth’s Best Organic), Beech-Nut, Plum Organics, Walmart (Parent’s Choice), and Sprout Organic Food knowingly sold tainted baby food to unsuspecting parents, according to the report.

Numerous studies have linked toxic heavy metal exposure to behavioral impairments. The link is especially pronounced among babies and young children, whose brains are still developing. Even at low levels, exposure to heavy metals can cause severe and irreversible damage to neurological development in children. As one recent study observed:

“[t]he implications of heavy metals with regards to children’s health have been noted to be more severe compared to adults. The elements’ harmful consequences on children’s health include mental retardation, neurocognitive disorders, behavioral disorders, respiratory problems, cancer and cardiovascular diseases. Much attention should be given to heavy metals because of their high toxicity potential, widespread use, and prevalence.”

The Wisner Baum law firm is filing baby food lawsuits that accuse Gerber, Hain Celestial, Walmart, Plum Organics, and other companies of knowingly selling baby foods with dangerously high levels of arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury. These metals are severe neurotoxins capable of substantially contributing to lifelong brain damage and neurodevelopmental disorders in children.

If your child developed autism after consuming substantial amounts of rice cereal, puffs, purees, or other baby foods from the companies listed above, you may be eligible to pursue justice and compensation in a baby food lawsuit. Filing a legal claim against these companies can help pay for health care costs and expensive therapy sessions associated with your child’s diagnosis.

JOIN THE LAWSUIT AGAINST GERBER AND OTHER BABY FOOD COMPANIES

Los Angeles attorneys from the Wisner Baum law firm are in active litigation against several major baby food companies that knowingly sell products with dangerous amounts of heavy metals. We are outraged by the recklessness these companies demonstrate by continuing to sell tainted foods and intend to hold them accountable in lawsuits.

If you purchased the baby foods from Happy Family Organics, Happy Baby, Gerber, Earth’s Best Organic, Beech-Nut, Plum Organics, Parent’s Choice, Walmart, or Sprout Organic Foods and your child later was later diagnosed with autism, our firm is interested in pursuing justice and maximum compensation on your behalf.

“The level of exposure to heavy metals known to be safe for babies is literally zero. These companies knew their products were toxic and they knew that if they told parents the truth, no one would ever buy tainted baby food. Concealing the known dangers of your products and profiting at the expense of your customers is already reprehensible. When you consider the customers in this case are kids, it doesn’t get much worse than that.” Attorney Pedram Esfandiary

Watch “The Empower Hour” with Noah Cantabrana’s mother, Melissa, her attorney Pedram Esfandiary, and Moms Across America Founder Zen Honeycutt, discuss heavy metals in baby food and autism.

HEAVY METALS IN BABY FOOD

Heavy metals—including lead, cadmium, mercury, and arsenic—are toxic environmental pollutants that enter our food supply chain via contamination of soil, water, and air; improper waste disposal; chemical fertilizer; pesticides; and the use of other materials.

Heavy metals in foods pose a threat to public health, especially for vulnerable young children because they consume more food in relation to their body weight and absorb metals more readily than adults. According to Linda McCauley, who studies environmental health effects as Dean of the Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing at Emory University, “[n]o level of exposure to these metals has been shown to be safe in vulnerable infants.” McCauley adds that exposure from several sources of toxic heavy metals can cause cumulative effects that are particularly dangerous for babies.

Heavy Metals Side Effects

  • Arsenic: Linked to bladder and lung cancer; damage to the central nervous system, brain development, and cognitive development; immunological effects; IQ deficit (specifically verbal, performance and memory); ASD; decrease in global motor, gross motor, and fine motor.
  • Cadmium: Linked to decreases in IQ; development of ASD and ADHD.
  • Lead: Linked to behavioral problems; ASD; decreased cognitive performance; delayed puberty; reduced postnatal growth; damage to central nervous system and brain development; adverse effect on academic achievement; with lower reading and math scores; significant association with ADHD.
  • Mercury: Linked to adverse subsequent neuro-development; ASD; poorer estimated IQ; positively associated with autistic behaviors among preschool children.

US Government Finds “Dangerous Amounts” of Heavy Metals Mercury, Cadmium, Lead, and Arsenic in Baby Food

The U.S. House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy has issued multiple shocking reports on heavy metals in baby food. The first report from the Subcommittee, ‘Baby Foods Are Tainted with Dangerous Levels of Arsenic, Lead, Cadmium, and Mercury’, detailed staggering levels of toxic metals in baby foods.

According to the government report, Nurture (Happy Family Organics and HappyBABY), Beech-Nut, Hain Celestial Group (Earth’s Best Organic), Plum Organics, Walmart (Parent’s Choice), Sprout Foods, and Gerber knowingly sell baby foods containing as much as 180 parts per billion (ppb) inorganic arsenic, 6441 ppb lead, 10 ppb mercury, and manufacture their products using ingredients containing as much as 913.4 ppb arsenic, 886.9 ppb lead, and 344.55 ppb cadmium, far eclipsing domestic and international regulatory standards.

To put this in perspective, here are the maximum allowable limits that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) set for arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury are:

The FDA allows a maximum level of 5 parts per billion (ppb) lead in bottled water.

The government report found 177 times more than the acceptable level of lead in baby food products.

The FDA allows a maximum level of 10 ppb arsenic in bottled water.

The government report found 91 times more than the acceptable level of arsenic in baby food products.

The FDA allows a maximum level of 5 ppb cadmium in bottled water.

The government report found 69 times more than the acceptable level of cadmium in baby food products.

The EPA allows a maximum of 2 ppb mercury in drinking water.

The government report found 5 times more than the acceptable level of mercury in baby food products.

WHICH BABY FOODS ARE HIGH IN HEAVY METALS?

Multiple government reports and testing from consumer advocacy organizations found that the following products and ingredients from Beech-Nut, Earth’s Best Organic, Gerber, Nurture (Happy BABY), Parent’s Choice, Plum Organics, and Sprout Foods contain heavy metals.

Beech-Nut Heavy Metals

  • Classics Mixed Vegetables Stage 2
  • Classics Sweet Carrots
  • Classics Sweet Potatoes Stage 2
  • Oatmeal Whole Grain Baby Cereal
  • Organics Just Carrots
  • Rice Single Grain Baby Cereal

Beech-Nut Ingredients Heavy Metals

  • Alpha Amylase (Enzyme)
  • Amylase (Enzyme)
  • Apricot
  • Ascorbic Acid
  • BAN 800 (Enzyme)
  • Blueberry
  • Carrots
  • Cinnamon
  • Coarse Oat Flour
  • Cumin
  • Dehydrated Potato
  • Mango
  • Oat Flour
  • Oregano
  • Organic Cinnamon
  • Organic Coriander
  • Organic Cumin
  • Organic Garlic
  • Organic Lemon
  • Organic Oat Flour
  • Organic Pears
  • Organic Prune
  • Organic Rice
  • Organic Rice Flour
  • Organic Turmeric
  • Prune
  • Prune Puree
  • Quinoa Flour
  • Rice
  • Rice Flour
  • Sebamyl 100 (Enzyme)
  • Sunflower Lecithin
  • Sweet Potato
  • Turmeric
  • Vitamin Mix

Gerber Heavy Metals

  • Arrowroot Biscuits
  • Barley Single Grain Cereal
  • Carrot Sitter 2nd Food
  • Carrot Supported Sitter 1st Goods
  • Diced Carrots Veggie Pickups
  • Fruit & Veggie Melts Truly Tropical Blend Free
  • Multigrain Cereal
  • Oatmeal Single Grain Cereal
  • Rice Single Grain Cereal
  • Sweet Potato Sitter 2nd Foods
  • Sweet Potato Supported Sitter 1st Foods Tub
  • Whole Wheat Whole Grain Cereal

Gerber Ingredients Heavy Metals

  • Conventional Carrots
  • Conventional Sweet Potatoes
  • Flour Rice Long Grain
  • Grape Juice White
  • Organic Sweet Potatoes

Earth’s Best Organic Heavy Metals

  • Sensitivity DHR/ARA Infant Formula with Iron
  • Sesame Street Peanut Butter Baked Corn Puffs
  • Spinach and Potato Baby Food 6 months
  • Whole Grain Rice Cereal

Earth’s Best Organic Ingredients Heavy Metals

  • Medium Grain Whole Rice
  • Organic Barley Flour
  • Organic Barley Malt Extract
  • Organic Blueberry Puree
  • Organic Brown Flax Milled
  • Organic Brown Rice Flour
  • Organic Butternut Squash Puree
  • Organic Cinnamon Powder
  • Organic Date Paste
  • Organic Green Lentil Flour
  • Organic Kamut Flour
  • Organic Quick Oats
  • Organic Soft White Wheat Flour
  • Organic Spelt Flour
  • Organic Yellow Split Pea Powder
  • Vitamin Pre-Mix
  • Whole Raisins

HAPPY BABY HEAVY METALS

  • Apple & Broccoli Puffs
  • Banana & Pumpkin Puffs
  • Blueberry Beet Rice Cakes
  • Kale & Spinach Puffs
  • Multi-Grain Cereal
  • Organic Baby Cereal, Clearly Crafted Whole Grains
  • Organic Oats & Quinoa Baby Cereal Whole Grains with Iron
  • Organic Rice Cakes Puffed Rice Snack
  • Organic Simple Combos Apples, Spinach & Kale
  • Pea Spinach Teether Biscuit
  • Purple Carrot & Blueberry Puffs
  • Strawberry & Beet Puffs
  • Superfood Puffs - Sweet Potato & Carrot Organic Snack
  • Superfoods Puffs - Apple & Broccoli Organic Snack
  • Sweet Potato & Carrot Puffs

Plum Organics Heavy Metals

  • Grow Well Muscle
  • Grow Well Tummy
  • Little Teethers Blueberry
  • Mighty Morning Bar Blueberry Lemon
  • Mighty Snack Bars Strawberry
  • Mighty Sticks Apple Carrot
  • Super Puffs Apple with Spinach
  • Super Puffs Blueberry with Purple Sweet Potato
  • Super Puffs Mango with Sweet Potato
  • Super Puffs Strawberry with Beet
  • Teensy Snacks Berry

Sprout Organic Food Heavy Metals

The U.S. House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy issued a second government report on baby foods in September of 2021. In the report, the Subcommittee noted that Sprout Foods’ practices “appear to be the most reckless among baby foods sellers on the market…The handful of documents that Sprout provided displayed a lax approach to testing for toxic heavy metals in its baby foods.”

Parent’s Choice (WALMART) HEAVY METALS

The second government report on baby foods found that Walmart (Parent’s Choice) “does not appear to conduct any testing of its baby food products for toxic heavy metals. Instead, it sets maximum toxic heavy metal levels and asks the manufacturer of Walmart’s private label to self-certify that products meet those levels.”

Other testing has found the following Walmart baby food products contain heavy metals:

  • Carrot Stage 2, 6 months (Parent's Choice)
  • Little Hearts Strawberry Yogurt Cereal Snacks Stage 3 (Parent's Choice)
  • Organic Strawberry Rice Rusks (Parent's Choice)

Baby Food Recall Announcements

Despite being called out in multiple baby food heavy metals reports, Gerber, Plum’s Organic, and other manufacturers have failed to recall products tainted with dangerous amounts of arsenic, lead, cadmium, and mercury. Below we profile some of the baby food recall announcements. We will update this list as the FDA issues new baby food recall alerts.

Beech Nut Baby Food Recall

On June 8, 2021, Beech Nut issued a voluntary recall for its infant rice cereal because levels of arsenic in baby food products surpassed the FDA’s maximum allowable limit of 100 part per billion. In addition, Beech Nut announced that it will no longer sell infant rice cereal.

The implicated product in the 2021 Beech Nut recall is the Single Grain Rice Cereal item (UPC 52200034705) which carries the expiration date 01MAY2022 and product codes 103470XXXX and 093470XXXX. The product codes and expiration dates can be found at the bottom of Beech Nut Single Grain Rice Cereal product containers.

According to Happy Babies Bright Futures, this was the first ever recall of infant rice cereal due to high levels of arsenic.

Beech Nut’s baby food recall announcement came just a day after the Attorney General for New Mexico filed a lawsuit against Beech Nut and other companies. Like a previous complaint filed in April by Washington D.C.’s Attorney General Karl Racine, the lawsuit accuses the defendants of marketing and selling baby foods contaminated with high levels of arsenic, cadmium, lead, and mercury. The lawsuits seek restitution and other legal remedies for failing to warn consumers about the dangerous levels of heavy metals in baby foods.

Walmart Baby Food Recall

On October 8, 2021, Maple Island, Inc., which manufactures Parent’s Choice Rice Baby Cereal for Walmart, issued a recall on three lots. The Parent’s Choice Rice Baby Cereal 8 oz lots subject to the recall were sold after April 5, 2021.The products listed in the October 2021 Walmart recall include:

  • Lot 21083 | UPC Code #00681131082907 | Best if Used by Date: JUN 24, 2022
  • Lot 21084 | UPC Code #00681131082907 | Best if Used by Date: JUN 25, 2022
  • Lot 21242 | UPC Code #00681131082907 | Best if Used by Date: NOV 30, 2022

Gerber Baby Food Recall

As of May 2023, Gerber has failed to issue a recall over toxic metals in the company’s baby food products. Gerber’s unwillingness to issue a recall is particularly concerning because the government baby food report issued in September of 2021 said Gerber “should recall two infant rice cereal product codes and consider discontinuing sales of its rice cereal.”

The FDA posted a Gerber recall alert on May 14, 2023 due to the potential presence of a bacteria capable of causing harm. This announcement was not related to heavy metals, however.

According to the FDA announcement, certain batches of Gerber Good Start SootheProTM Powdered Infant Formula manufactured in the U.S. were recalled out of an abundance of caution due to the potential presence of Cronobacter sakazakii.

Cronobacter sakazakii can be harmful, particularly to premature infants, infants under 2 months of age, or infants with weakened immune systems, as they may experience fever, poor feeding, excessive crying or low energy as well as other serious symptoms.

Below are the affected Lots and “Use By” dates for the recalled products:

Gerber Good Start Infant Formula SootheProTM 12.4 oz:

  • 300357651Z – USE BY 04JUL2024
  • 300457651Z – USE BY 05JUL2024
  • 300557651Z – USE BY 06JUL2024
  • 300557652Z – USE BY 06JUL2024
  • 300757651Z – USE BY 08JUL2024
  • 300857651Z – USE BY 09JUL2024
  • 301057651Z – USE BY 11JUL2024
  • 301057652Z – USE BY 11JUL2024
  • 301157651Z – USE BY 12JUL2024

Baby Food Lawyer Videos

This video series includes media interviews with Wisner Baum attorney Pedram Esfandiary, where he provides background on the toxic baby food litigation and answers common questions, including, “What are heavy metals and why are they in baby food?” and “Why are parents filing lawsuits over heavy metals in baby foods?

View Series

Read Wisner Baum’s Public Comment to the FDA on Heavy Metals in Baby Food

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IS THERE A BABY FOOD CLASS ACTION LAWSUIT?

There have been multiple baby food class action lawsuits filed against multiple companies. Lawyers filed a baby food class action lawsuit against Plum Organics alleging the manufacturer misled consumers by marketing its line of baby food products as “made from the best ingredients.”

Plum Organics was not one of the companies that cooperated with the House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Policy report. Nevertheless, Plum Organics was cited in a Healthy Babies Bright Futures report, which found many of the same toxic chemicals listed in the government report.

According to the baby food class action against Plum Organics, the company failed to disclose that its food products are at risk of containing “any level of heavy metals or other undesirable toxins or contaminants."

In 2021, attorneys filed a Walmart class action lawsuit alleging the same harm involving toxic metals in Parent’s Choice products. In 2022, a judge ruled that the Walmart class action over heavy metals in baby foods could proceed. 

Sprout Organic Foods has also been named in a class action. However, a judge dismissed the case in 2022.  A Gerber class action lawsuit was also dismissed in 2022. 

Baby food attorneys from the law firm of Wisner Baum are not involved in the class action litigation. Our firm is mounting individual baby food lawsuit cases on behalf of parents with children diagnosed with neurodevelopmental disorders.

CALL OUR BABY FOOD LAWYER TEAM TO SEE IF YOU QUALIFY FOR A LAWSUIT

If your child was harmed by baby food products from Happy Family Organics (including the Happy BABY line), Gerber, Beech-Nut, Earth’s Best Organic, Parent’s Choice, Plum Organics, or Sprout Organic Food, our lawyers are interested in representing you in a baby food heavy metals lawsuit.

Our attorneys have earned more than $4 billion in verdicts and settlements. We take pride in our approach to representing families who have suffered hardships as a result of negligence or wrongdoing. Our firm will always do what is needed to get the best resolution possible for our clients.