1.8 Million Bottles of Water Impacted by FDA Recall Notice Pose ‘No Health’ Risk, Company Says

About 1.9 million bottles of Fiji Water have been recalled across the United States in recent months.
1.8 Million Bottles of Water Impacted by FDA Recall Notice Pose ‘No Health’ Risk, Company Says
Fiji Water at Film Independent Spirit Awards Nominee Brunch at Hotel Casa del Mar in Santa Monica, Calif., on Jan. 6, 2024. (Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images for Film Independent Spirit Awards Nominee Brunch)
Jack Phillips

About 1.9 million bottles of Fiji Water have been recalled across the United States after testing found a mineral and three types of bacteria, according to a notice posted on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) website last week, although the company later said that it poses “no health or safety risk.”

Natural Waters of Viti Limited recalled 78,533 cases, which amounts to about 1.88 million bottles, of Fiji Water. Testing found manganese and “three bacterial genera,” said the FDA on May 23, although the types of bacteria were not disclosed.
The FDA indicated that the recall is now under a Class III categorization, which means it is “a situation in which use of, or exposure to, a violative product is not likely to cause adverse health consequences.”
Several weeks ago, the company said in a statement on social media that the lots of Fiji Water that are under recall were sold via Amazon.com. “FIJI Water remains safe to buy and consume,” it said at the time after Amazon issued an alert about the water.

“We understand the frustration” and the alert “sent by Amazon does not accurately reflect the issue,” the company also said.

In response to the recall update last week, Fiji said in a statement to multiple news outlets that the FDA classification that was announced “relates to a matter from several months ago that never posed any health or safety risk.”

“It affected products that were sold through only one distributor, and 99 percent of all those affected bottles were reclaimed with the remainder in warehouses to be returned. There is no higher priority to us than the safety and quality of Fiji Water,” the statement said. “There is no health or safety risk posed from manganese or bacteria in the recalled lots of FIJI Water. Moreover, FIJI Water conducts regular testing to ensure consumers enjoy the soft, smooth taste of FIJI Water that they expect and love.”

The cases contained 24 bottles each, according to the notice, and the cases have a UPC Code of 6 32565 00004 3, while the bottle has a code of 6 32565 00001 2. The production dates are Nov. 11, 2023; Nov. 12, 2023; Nov. 13, 2023; Nov. 24, 2023; and Nov. 25, 2023.

The affected bottles of Fiji Water were sold between Feb. 1 and March 3, 2024, the firm said in its statement.

The Epoch Times contacted Fiji for comment on Sunday.  The return policy for Fiji Water can be located on the firm’s website.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) says manganese is a naturally occurring mineral that is found in water, soil, and air, and it notes that overexposure can lead to health issues affecting the memory, motor skills, and attention.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says on it website that people who have consumed water with high levels of manganese for a lengthy period of time can suffer nervous system problems and brain development issues, among other health concerns.
“Although not all individuals develop identical signs, the most common are a slow and clumsy gait, speech disturbances, a masklike face, and tremors. The neurological symptoms may improve when exposure ceases; however, in most cases, the symptoms are found to persist for many years post-exposure,” says a report from the CDC.
The mineral, however, is important for multiple functions in the human body, described as an “essential trace element” that is available in a number of foods and in dietary supplements, according to the National Institutes of Heath.

“Manganese is a cofactor for many enzymes, including manganese superoxide dismutase, arginase, and pyruvate carboxylase,” it said, adding that it is “involved in amino acid, cholesterol, glucose, and carbohydrate metabolism; reactive oxygen species scavenging; bone formation; reproduction; and immune response.

“Manganese also plays a role in blood clotting and hemostasis in conjunction with vitamin K.”

Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter with 15 years experience who started as a local New York City reporter. Having joined The Epoch Times' news team in 2009, Jack was born and raised near Modesto in California's Central Valley. Follow him on X: https://twitter.com/jackphillips5