Recall on General Mills UK Green Giant Brand Sweetcorn: Potential Fear of Botulism
Parent company General Mills, of the UK, has issued a recall on Green Giant branded sweetcorn. The recall was initiated on April 30, 2020, citing safety concerns due to faulty seams in the cans that have the potential to allow air to enter the sealed product. The affected product is Green Giant Original Sweetcorn 198g with best before date of 07/2023 and batch codes 293 1s1, 294 1s1, and 295 1s1. Consumers should not ingest the product and are advised to contact General Mills at (UK) 0800 897 777 and (ROI) 1800 535 115 for a refund with no receipt necessary.
Though General Mills UK did not state what the dangers are behind faulty seams, the most common risk associated with canned foods is botulism. When cans are dented, they become at risk for botulism because the tiny openings in cans allows for the toxic bacteria to quickly develop under the combination of moisture and air. The risk of contracting botulism increases as the size of the dent increases. Specifically, if the dent is on the seems of the can, whether it be on the top, bottom, or side seems of the can, it is more likely the can contains the botulism bacteria. Deep dents typically have sharp edges and are deep enough for ones finger to fit inside said divot. If a can seems misshapen, being shallow or bulging from its normal state, this could be a sign that the can is at risk for botulism contamination.
Botulism is caused by bacteria, mainly Clostridium botulinum, Clostridium butyricum, and Clostridium baratii. As the toxin attacks the nervous system, those infected with botulism experience difficulty breathing, vision problems, and muscle spasms; botulism is often misdiagnosed due to the similarity in symptoms with Guillain-Barre Syndrome. Symptoms of botulism typically begin 18 to 36 hours after ingestion of the bacteria, and if not treated properly, botulism can be deadly. Botulism is treated with antitoxin, a drug that prevents further damage by the toxic bacteria. However, antitoxin cannot heal the nerve damage. If you suspect you have the symptoms for botulism, immediately seek treatment.