‘Sustagen’, ‘Alactagrow’ safe, assures Mead Johnson
September 22, 2010 10:09 am
By Joel C. Atencio
MANILA, Sept. 21 – Mead Johnson Nutrition Philippines, maker of Sustagen and Alactagrow-brand baby's milk, said on Tuesday that its two products are safe for public consumption amid a recall order by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
An official of Mead Johnson Nutrition, the manufacturer of Sustagen Junior Milk Drink Powder Vanilla Flavor (for toddlers 1-3 year old) and Alactagrow Bibo Trio Milk Supplement, told reporters these products are safe for consumption.
"All the products of Mead Johnson passed FDA healthy requirement and considered to be safe for consumption and of high quality," said Janryll Fernandez of Mead Johnson Philippines (MJP) in a luncheon press briefing at the Makati Shangri La Hotel in Makati City.
Fernandez said the two milk products were earlier recalled by FDA for fat level content that were allegedly non-compliant with FDA standards.
The FDA said the standard required for fat is between three and six grams per 100 calories.
FDA reported that Sustagen Junior Milk Drink Powder Vanilla Flavor contained only 1.5 gram fat per 100 calories.
The Alactagrow Bibo Trio Milk Supplement, on the other hand, has fat content of 1.34 gram per 100 calories.
Fernandez said the findings of the FDA was merely a technical compliance issue since a new Code of Standards was released.
"We have a certificate approved by FDA. We have passed all health requirements, it is just that the new code is implemented," Fernandez said.
According to Fernandez, Mead Johnson will be accepting "recalled" products, in cooperation with its distributors and retailers as mandated by FDA.
MJP is set to resolve issues with FDA as they will launch new formulation this week.
MJP downplayed the FDA's recall orders for Sustagen Junior and Alactagrow, saying these were based on non-compliance with certain technicalities and not with safety requirements.
"Safety is Mead Johnson's highest priority and the company spares no effort to comply with the laws of all the countries in which it operates," Fernandez told reporters.
Last Sept. 16, the FDA issued recall orders for the two products after finding their fat content to be below standard.
"Continuous distribution of the said product(s) presents gross deception to the consuming public and may even present risk of illness or injury to the consuming sector of the public, the young children," the FDA said in Advisories 2010-009 and 2010-010.
Acting FDA director Nazarita Tacandong appealed to consumers who had bought the products to return them to Mead Johnson Nutrition Philippines or its licensed distributors.
But according to MJN, “The Philippine FDA has issued a Class III order, the lowest level, which is used for products that have technical compliance issues."
The classification means that the use of the product "is not likely to cause adverse health consequences," Fernandez said. (PNA) RMA/JCA