A brand of almond milk linked to potentially life-threatening botulism is being recalled in New South Wales.
Woolworths in New South Wales has launched Inside Out unsweetened almond milk with an expiration date of March 1st.
Initial studies have confirmed the presence of botulinum toxin in milk samples, according to NSW Health.
The contamination was discovered after a person who experienced severe symptoms of botulism after drinking the product was taken to a hospital, where he is still receiving treatment.
NSW Health has advised that the recalled product is not safe to consume and is urging people to check their refrigerators and cupboards and dispose of the milk or return it to the supermarket for a refund.
NSW Health’s Keira Glasgow said foodborne botulism is very rare in Australia, but the toxin is extremely dangerous and can even be life-threatening.
Early symptoms of food poisoning include weakness, fatigue, and dizziness.
“This is usually followed by blurred vision, dry mouth and difficulty swallowing,” says Glasgow. “Nausea and vomiting may also occur. “These symptoms can lead to paralysis of the arm muscles, which can spread throughout the body to the trunk and legs, and paralysis of the respiratory muscles can be fatal.
People with symptoms are advised to seek immediate medical attention.
“If diagnosed and treated early, most cases recover,” said Glasgow.
Symptoms begin hours to days after consuming the contaminated product.
Details of affected products can be found on his website for Food Standards Australia New Zealand.
What is Botulism?
Botulism is a rare but serious illness caused by the toxin produced by the bacterium Clostridium botulinum. Botulinum toxin affects the nervous system and can cause symptoms that range from mild to severe, including:
- Muscle weakness, which can start in the face and spread to other parts of the body
- Double vision, blurred vision, or drooping eyelids
- Difficulty speaking, swallowing, or breathing
- Dry mouth
- Nausea, vomiting, or constipation
In severe cases, botulism can cause paralysis and even be life-threatening, particularly if the muscles that control breathing become affected. If you suspect you or someone you know may have botulism, seek medical attention immediately.
It’s important to note that botulism is rare, and most cases in the United States are associated with improperly canned or preserved food, particularly home-canned goods. Commercially produced foods that have been properly processed and packaged are generally safe, but there have been occasional outbreaks associated with commercially produced foods as well.
How to cure it ?
Botulism is a serious illness that requires prompt medical treatment. If you suspect you or someone you know may have botulism, it’s important to seek medical attention immediately. Treatment may involve hospitalization and supportive care, such as assistance with breathing and feeding, as well as administration of botulism antitoxin, which can help neutralize the toxin in the body.
In addition to seeking medical treatment, it’s important to identify and avoid any potential sources of botulism, such as improperly canned or preserved food, which can harbor the bacteria that produce the toxin. Home canning or preserving should always be done following proper techniques to prevent the growth of Clostridium botulinum. It’s also important to follow food safety guidelines when handling and preparing food to reduce the risk of contamination. Commercially produced foods that have been properly processed and packaged are generally safe, but it’s important to follow any food safety warnings or recall notices issued by relevant health authorities.