The parents of an Indiana toddler have sued the makers of Veggie Booty, claiming the recalled snack poisoned their child.
The lawsuit, filed in federal court in New York by David and Ashlee Allen, of Valparaiso, Ind., says their 18-month-old son, Xavier, ate a bag of Veggie Booty on May 20. It alleges that three days later, he had a bout of "severe, bloody diarrhea," and was diagnosed at a hospital with salmonella poisoning.
Robert's American Gourmet Inc. had a duty to make food "that was fit for human consumption ... and that was free of pathogenic bacteria," said the suit, which seeks unspecified damages. "The defendant breached this duty."
A telephone message left Friday with the company, based in Sea Cliff on Long Island, was not immediately returned.
The company recalled its Veggie Booty Snack Food last week after it was associated with 54 cases of salmonella poisoning in 17 states. Many of those sickened reported eating Veggie Booty.
The recall was expanded on Monday to include Super Veggie Tings Crunchy Corn Sticks Snack Food, since it uses the same seasoning. A company official said a spray-on seasoning made with imported Chinese ingredients that was used on both baked products had tested positive for bacteria.
The recall is only the latest in a growing series to involve Chinese-made products found to be tainted, defective or otherwise dangerous. In recent weeks, there have been recalls of Chinese tires, toy trains and toothpaste. The government also is blocking some Chinese farmed seafood imports because of widespread contamination by antibiotics and other drugs.
Salmonella can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections, especially in young children, frail or elderly people and others with weakened immune systems. Symptoms include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain.