Natural Foods Merchandiser

Retailers serve as front line in Hyland's Teething Tablets recall

From Whole Foods Market to Pangaea Naturals, retailers feel impact of voluntary product recall.

Standard Homeopathic Co.’s voluntary recall of its Hyland’s Teething Tablets is affecting more than just parents and their teething tots. Retailers both big and small must also deal with the impact of this large-scale recall.

At the retail level, customers are likely to ask why the product has been recalled and when a replacement supply will be available. When answering this question, retailers should be sure to focus on the facts, said Daniel Fabricant, vice president of global government and scientific affairs for the Washington, D.C.-based Natural Products Association. “The recall is precautionary in nature to protect public health,” Fabricant said.

In its October 23 warning, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said its analysis and testing of Hyland’s Teething Tablets found inconsistent amounts of belladonna, which in its herbal form is potentially toxic at high amounts. Standard Homeopathic Co. responded to the warning by voluntarily recalling all of its Hyland’s Teething Tablets products “in an abundance of caution,” the company said. In working with the FDA, Standard Homeopathic Co. said it had identified ways to improve its Teething Tablets manufacturing processes to ensure uniformity in dosage.

The company is providing a refund or coupon for a replacement product to consumers. Fabricant also suggested that retailers keep in contact with their distributor and the manufacturer for further instructions and information on new product delivery.

The front line to consumers
Hyland’s Teething Tablets are widely distributed in both the natural & specialty and the mass market channels. Whole Foods Market immediately removed all of its Teething Tablets products nationwide following the Oct. 25 recall.

At Pangaea Naturals, a natural products store in Manahawkin, New Jersey, owner Mike Greenblatt said his internal recall procedure included swiftly pulling all Hyland’s Teething Tablets from the shelves and pinning a notice on the store bulletin board to notify customers of the event. “Of course, we will also discuss it with any customers we know,” Greenblatt said.  Although the teething product is not a big seller for Greenblatt, he plans to contact any customers who may have bought it from his store.“We’ll [also] check our customer database and let any recent purchasers know of the recall,” Greenblatt said.

To keep up-to-date on future product recalls and product safety, natural products retailers can subscribe to the FDA’s MedWatch Safety Alerts. Fabricant also recommends that retailers join a trade association such as the Natural Products Association, which sends out recall-related information from the FDA and other sources.

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