We write a lot about raising successful kids, and the most important part of that is probably keeping them physically safe.
That's why a lot of parents are reacting with alarm today, after the news that the makers of Ritz Crackers and Goldfish have announced a voluntary product recall due to a salmonella scare.
If you're the parent of a toddler (as I am), chances are your child eats a lot of crackers and Goldfish. They're kind of the go-to snack for a lot of 2 and 3 year olds. So, you might also be nervous if you've realized that they'd eaten any of these products in the last few days.
With that in mind, here are the details of the recall, and what to do if your children ate some of the affected products.
The good news
First, these are voluntary recalls, and so far there have been no reported illnesses as a result of eating any of the affected products. As Pepperidge Farm, which makes Goldfish reported on Twitter:
"After being notified by one of our ingredient suppliers that a whey powder in a seasoning that is applied to these crackers has been the subject of a recall due to the potential presence of Salmonella, this decision was made out of an abundance of caution."
Additionally, as you'll see below the product list has a few favorites on it, but it doesn't include the plain varieties of either Goldfish or Ritz Crackers. That means if your toddler has a typically bland palate, you're probably more likely to be safe.
Salmonella: a primer
The short version of what to do if your child has eaten one of the snacks on the list, is to keep a close eye on them, and check with their doctor.
The Mayo Clinic says that , "[t]ypically, people with salmonella infection have no symptoms. Others develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps within eight to 72 hours. Most healthy people recover within a few days without specific treatment."
That said, the symptoms when they do manifest sound pretty unpleasant--and they can lead to serious health issues or even death in some cases:
In some cases, the diarrhea associated with salmonella infection can be so dehydrating as to require prompt medical attention. Life-threatening complications also may develop if the infection spreads beyond your intestines.
Salmonella infection usually isn't life-threatening. However, in certain people -- especially infants and young children, older adults, transplant recipients, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems -- the development of complications can be dangerous.
If you don't know where else to turn, Mondelez Global, which makes Ritz Crackers, has set up an information line at 1-844-366-1171. However, I dialed the number while writing the story--and gave up after 18 minutes on hold.
The list of products
Again, it's not every Ritz Cracker or Goldfish product; instead it's the products on the list below. If you've bought any of these, you should throw them out. You can also return them to the store if you'd like for a refund.
(I suspect a lot of parents might react like we did in the Murphy household, however, and just throw out everything from either brand.)
- Flavor Blasted Xtra Cheddar
- Flavor Blasted Sour Cream & Onion
- Goldfish Baked with Whole Grain Xtra Cheddar
- Goldfish Mix Xtra Cheddar + Pretzel
2. Ritz Crackers
Mondelez International actually goes so far as to identify particular packaging and production dates that are being recalled. You can find that information here (opens pdf link).
- Ritz Bits Cheese
- Ritz Bacon Cracker Sandwiches with Cheese
- Ritz Cheese Cracker Sandwiches
- Ritz Bacon Cracker Sandwiches With Cheese
- Ritz Whole Wheat Cracker Sandwiches With White Cheddar Cheese
- Ritz Whole Wheat Cracker Sandwiches With Cream Cheese
- Ritz Mixed Cookie Cracker Variety