The FDA has found that recalled “Real Water,” which is linked to a hepatitis outbreak, is still being sold online. The agency is urging the public to not drink the water and to report any entity selling it.
A notice today from the Food and Drug Administration says the agency is working to locate any remaining products to ensure they are no longer available to consumers. The public is requested to report any product being offered for sale to the FDA Consumer Complaint Coordinator in their region.
“In addition, the FDA is conducting an audit to gauge the effectiveness of the voluntary recall initiated by Real Water Inc. As of March 31, 2021, the audit has found that, prior to contact by FDA, a number of distributors had not received notification directly from the firm about the recall. Additionally, as of March 31, 2021, Real Water Inc. is still promoting the product via social media despite issuing a recall announcement,” according to the FDA’s updated public warning.
“Therefore, the FDA is reiterating that it is crucial that consumers, restaurants, distributors, and retailers not drink, cook with, sell, or serve “Real Water” alkaline water.”
The FDA is also recommending that the water not be given to pets.
“Five children were hospitalized in late 2020 in Clark County, but all of them have recovered,” according to a Southern Nevada Health District investigation report. The health district, based in Las Vegas, received initial reports of the five cases of acute non-viral hepatitis in November 2020.
“The patients lived in four different households. Six additional people have reported experiencing less severe symptoms that include vomiting, nausea, loss of appetite, and fatigue. These patients include three adults and three children,” the health district reported.
The agency reported in recent days that the company, which has facilities in Henderson, NV, and Mesa, AZ, had not been cooperating with the outbreak investigation into several cases of non-viral, acute hepatitis. The only common denominator between the patients is the consumption of Real Water products.
“FDA investigators have been unable to complete investigations at the ‘Real Water’ Inc. facilities in Henderson, NV and Mesa, AZ and have not been provided with requested records. As a result, on March 23 and on March 25, FDA issued a Demand for Records under section 414 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act,” the FDA reiterated today.
The implicated products include but are not limited to 5-gallon and 3-gallon containers sold through home delivery/subscription, bottles of various sizes sold on-line and in stores, and the “Real Water” concentrate sold on-line. The firm’s press release also includes 1.5 liter, 1 liter, 500 ml, and 1-gallon ready-to-drink alkaline water bottles and the 4 oz. concentrate.
According to theReal Water press release, the recalled alkaline water products are available nationwide, however, the 5-gallon containers were distributed to the following areas: greater Las Vegas area, central California coastal region North of Los Angeles, CA, and South from Santa Barbara, CA, and Phoenix, AZ.
Anyone who has consumed any of the implicated water and developed symptoms of hepatitis should seek medical attention.
Symptoms of all types of hepatitis, including non-viral hepatitis, are similar and can include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, dark urine, clay or gray-colored bowel movements, joint pain, yellow eyes, and jaundice. Those experiencing these symptoms should contact their doctor.
(To sign up for a free subscription to Food Safety News, click here.)