The Justice Department is investigating conduct at Abbott Laboratories’ infant formula plant in Sturgis, Michigan, in reference to a contamination investigation that closed the plant final yr, a supply conversant in the matter instructed ABC News.
The monthslong shutdown of the plant amid a investigation helped set off a nationwide formula scarcity.
An Abbott spokesperson instructed ABC News, “DOJ has knowledgeable us of its investigation and we’re cooperating absolutely.”
The DOJ didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.
The Consumer Protection department of the DOJ is conducting the prison investigation, the supply acquainted mentioned.
The discovery of Cronobacter sakazakii micro organism inside Abbott’s Sturgis plant prompted a massive voluntary formula recall in February, after 4 infants who had consumed Abbott’s formula contracted a Cronobacter an infection.
Two of the infants subsequently died, though Abbott maintains there has not been conclusive proof that its formula induced the infant sicknesses, since not one of the Cronobacter strains discovered at their plant matched the 2 samples genetically sequenced from the sickened infants.
Food and Drug Administration officers mentioned the investigation stays ongoing.
Ultimately, it was the mixed findings of Cronobacter inside Abbott’s plant — together with a sample of significant operational deficiencies and shopper complaints — which led to the plant’s closure.
The plant reopened in June and restarted manufacturing of its largest formula Similac in August.