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Arnica Mislabeled as Spice is Recalled

A New Jersey spice company is recalling arnica products saying the label states “use to enhance the flavor of your favorite dish” when it should have read “recommended for external use only.”

NAC Foods Corporation of Palisades Park announced its voluntary recall of Mi Pepito Arnica Flower and Stem Arnica on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website.

According to that statement, the packer of spices and chiles “has been informed” that arnica, if taken in large quantities, can be harmful. It said the recall was initiated, in cooperation with the FDA, after the company received word from a key account that a customer had raised concerns regarding the product label and usage information.

To date, no illnesses related to the arnica have been reported. 

No other NAC Foods products are affected by this recall, and NAC Foods said it decided, as of March 1, that it will no longer pack or distribute arnica.

Arnica, related to the sunflower, has long been used as an herbal remedy, although its effectiveness has not been demonstrated. Arnica preparations, used both topically and internally, are widely marketed as anti-inflammatories to treat bruising and sprains.  However, Arnica contains the toxin helenalin, so if it is taken in significant quantities it can cause severe gastroenteritis and digestive tract bleeding. 

The NAC Foods’ product was distributed to retail outlets in Rhode Island, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey. 

The recalled products are: 

Arnica Flower with UPC 707425900334, item number #508, net weight .25 oz  and 

Stem Arnica UPC 707425900655, item number #630, net weight .5 oz

Consumers who have purchased the Mi Pepito Arnica Flower or the Mi Pepito Stem Arnica are urged to return the product to the store it was purchased immediately for a full refund or call NAC Foods.

Consumers can contact the company at 201-592-8920 Monday through Friday between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET.

© Food Safety News