The number of children affected by extremely high levels of lead in cinnamon applesauce pouches continues to grow.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are now reporting a total of 287 patients, up from its count on Dec. 22 when 251 patients from 34 states had been reported to the agency.

The Food and Drug Administration had received reports of 82 reports of children with lead poisoning as of Dec. 26. The agencies use different reporting methods so their numbers may overlap in some cases and should therefore not be added for a total.

The outbreak has been traced to three brands of cinnamon applesauce, Wanabana, Schnucks and Weis. All three were produced by Astrofoods in Ecuador and all three used cinnamon from the supplier Negasmart. The recalled cinnamon applesauce pouches were made with cinnamon containing as much as 2,000 times the recommended amount of lead. These products have a long shelf life. Consumers should check their homes and discard these products.

The cinnamon in the applesauce has been found to be the problem by U.S. and Ecuadorian officials. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is testing other products and only the recalled cinnamon applesauce is showing elevated levels of lead. 

Recalled products still on store shelves
WanaBana apple cinnamon fruit puree pouches are sold nationally individually and in three-packs and have been available through multiple retailers, including Amazon and other online outlets, as well as Dollar Tree and Family Dollar/Dollar Tree combination stores.

The FDA found, as of Dec. 13, recalled WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Puree products still on the shelves at several Dollar Tree stores in multiple states. 

As of Dec. 19, the FDA also received a report that recalled WanaBana Apple Cinnamon Puree products may still be on shelves at Family Dollar/Dollar Tree combination stores. Consumers should not purchase these products.

Schnucks-brand cinnamon-flavored applesauce pouches and variety packs were sold at Schnucks and Eatwell Markets grocery stores. They have been removed from store shelves

Weis-brand cinnamon applesauce pouches are sold at Weis grocery stores and have been removed from store shelves.

About lead poisoning
Parents and caretakers should consult a healthcare provider and ask for blood tests if they suspect a child may have been exposed to the recalled cinnamon applesauce products. 

Short-term exposure to lead could result in the following symptoms: headache, abdominal pain/colic, vomiting, and anemia. 

Longer-term exposure could result in additional symptoms: irritability, lethargy, fatigue, muscle aches or muscle prickling/burning, constipation, difficulty concentrating/muscular weakness, tremors, and weight loss. 

Permanent consequences can lead to developmental delays and brain damage.

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