FDA recalls chewing tobacco products


The Office of the Attorney General announced Friday a recall by the U.S. Food & Drug Administration of chewing tobacco products manufactured by U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. due to consumer complaints of foreign metal objects found in select cans.

In a notice on Friday, the OAG informed and cautioned Commonwealth consumers and businesses (both wholesalers and retailers) about the recall affecting these well-known brands: Copenhagen, Skoal, Cope, and Husky.

“This massive recall may impact Commonwealth consumers who purchase these products as well as Commonwealth businesses who sell these products. I want to make sure that consumers who typically purchase these brands of chewing tobacco exercise extra caution to ensure their safety,” said Attorney General Edward Manibusan.

“I would also like to emphasize that all Commonwealth businesses selling chewing tobacco need to exercise the highest level of corporate responsibility by exactly following the instructions in the FDA announcement in order to best prevent consumer injuries,” Manibusan added.

Consumer counsel Michael J. Cyganek said: “It is very important that both retail businesses—businesses that sell directly to the consumer—and wholesaler businesses—businesses that sell to retail businesses that in turn sell to consumers—both follow the manufacturer’s instructions to segregate the recalled products from their respective inventories. Commonwealth businesses need to know that the manufacturer of the recalled chewing tobacco products has expressed a willingness to help businesses return any impacted products for a refund.”

Cyganek advised that “if you as a consumer purchased one or more of the products identified in the FDA announcement, you should first off not use or even open the product, and secondarily if you want a refund you should contact the manufacturer by phone at 1-866-201-9136.”

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration announcement states: “U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company is voluntarily recalling certain of its smokeless tobacco products, listed in the chart below, manufactured at USSTC’s facility in Franklin Park, IL.

“USSTC has notified the U.S. Food and Drug Administration of the recall and is working with federal authorities on this matter.

“USSTC initiated the recall after receiving eight consumer complaints of foreign metal objects, including sharp metal objects, found in select cans. In each case, the object was visible to the consumer and there have been no reports of consumer injury. Complaints have been received from consumers in Indiana, Texas, North Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin, and Ohio.

“The products at issue were manufactured solely in USSTC’s Franklin Park, IL facility and distributed nationally. The majority of USSTC’s cans are not affected, including Copenhagen Fine Cut in a fiberboard can, Copenhagen Long Cut in a fiberboard can and Copenhagen Long Cut Wintergreen in a plastic can.

“USSTC is instructing wholesalers and retailers to segregate the recalled products from their inventories. USSTC’s sales representatives will assist wholesalers and retailers in returning the product.

“A consumer who has any of the products listed in the table below should not open or use the product. Consumers should contact USSTC at 1-866-201-9136 to return the product for a refund.” (OAG)

Press Release
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