• A company voluntarily recalled hand sanitizers that resembled food and beverage pouches
  • The pouches also had children's characters on them
  • Ingesting hand sanitizer is not safe, especially for children
  • The confusing packaging could lead to accidental hand sanitizer ingestion

A company has voluntarily recalled several of its hand sanitizer products with packages that look rather like food or drink pouches. Such products may lead to accidental ingestion, which is potentially harmful to health.

On Oct. 2, the FDA released a company announcement from Ashtel Studios voluntarily recalling several 25-milliliter containers of hand sanitizers that are packaged in what looks like food or beverage pouches and, even have children's characters displayed on them.

The recall affects the following products, all of which are packaged in 25 ml pouches:

  • PAW Patrol Hand Sanitizer (NDC 70108-042-01 )
  • JoJo Siwa Hand Sanitizer (NDC 70108-044-01 )
  • Hot Wheels Hand Sanitizer (NDC 70108-045-01 )
  • Barbie Hand Sanitizer (NDC 70108-046-01 )
  • Trolls Hand Sanitizer (NDC 70108-047-01 )
  • Minions Hand Sanitizer (NDC 70108-043-01 )

Photos of the affected products, which were distributed in various retailers in the U.S. and Canada, are available at the FDA website. The company has since notified the retailers about the recall and is advising anyone who may have purchased the said products to immediately destroy them.

The danger in these products lies in the possibility that people may accidentally ingest the hand sanitizers since they are packed like food or beverages. This is particularly problematic in children, who may easily mistake the packaging for food and experience adverse effects even after ingesting just a small amount of hand sanitizer.

"Symptoms of alcohol toxicity may range from lack of coordination, slowed or slurred speech, drowsiness to coma, which can be fatal," the FDA recall notes.

Back in August, the FDA warned the public against buying such products, including those that have food flavors, because they may lead to serious injury if accidentally ingested. At the time, there were already reports of a hand sanitizer being mistaken for a drinking water bottle and others that were packed rather like children's snacks.

"These products could confuse consumers into accidentally ingesting a potentially deadly product," FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D. said in the August news release. "It's dangerous to add scents with food flavors to hand sanitizers which children could think smells like food, eat and get alcohol poisoning."

The company has not received any reports of adverse effects related to the products but anyone who experiences any problems with them may report to the FDA online or via mail or fax. Those with questions about the recall may contact Ashtel Studios at 866-Ashtel-1 or 909-434-0911 (international).

hand sanitizer packaging
A representational photo of hand sanitizer. Harvey Boyd - Pixabay