FDA orders withdrawal from market of gin brand on high methanol levels

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THE Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has ordered the recall of all Cosmic Carabao Gin products from the market, after finding that the product contains high levels of methanol.

The FDA issued Advisory 2019-188 on Tuesday which that all Cosmic Carabao Gin still on store shelves are subject to confiscation, and banned further sales.

“In the interest of public protection, the Field Regulatory Operations Office inspectors and Regulatory Enforcement Unit Officers of FDA shall seize and/or confiscate all Cosmic Carabao Gin products in the market. All Local Government Units and Law Enforcement Agencies are requested to ensure that this product is not sold or made available in their localities or areas of jurisdiction,” according to the advisory.

The order follows reports of two women who were hospitalized for alleged methanol poisoning after consuming the drink, which resulted in the death of one of them.

According to the FDA, non-toxic levels of methanol are usually found in both alcoholic and non-alcoholic fermented drinks as a result of natural fermentation. Methanol is also used in household products and gasoline.

“Higher concentrations of methanol in alcoholic drinks can happen when methanol is deliberately added to alcoholic drinks. Signs and symptoms of methanol poisoning include headaches, vomiting, abdominal pain, hyperventilation, and a feeling of breathlessness. Blindness can also happen in severe cases,” according to the advisory, which was signed by FDA Officer-in-Charge Rolando Enrique D. Domingo.

The brand does not have an FDA registration. The FDA warned consumers to avoid purchasing food and drink products that are not FDA approved. — Gillian M. Cortez