A bottled water recall has now spread to 14 different brands amid fears of E. coli contamination, but the bottling company at the center of the incident is standing by its process.
This week, Niagara Bottling issued a voluntary recall of bottled water produced at two Pennsylvania plants, noting that the operator of a contracted spring had failed to notify the company that there was evidence of E. coli in the source of the water.
The recall affected water bottled between June 10 and June 18, company officials noted.
“This affects a regional level. Over the eight days, this bottled water was shipped to over 11 states,” said company spokesman Stan Bratskeir in a FOXBusiness.com interview.
Niagara Bottling officials noted that the bottled water recall affects stores in Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Vermont, Virginia, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania.
Though the company itself may have had no control over the possible E. coli contamination, Niagara Bottling defended its own practice and noted that it had safeguards that would have kept contaminated water from reaching the public.
“Niagara Bottling performs extensive testing on both incoming spring water as well as finished products. We have confirmed there have been no issues or E. coli contamination of any kind detected in our finished products or in the spring water that was delivered to our bottling facility.
“Even if it had been present in the incoming spring water, we utilize quality systems and disinfection technology that would ensure that our product is free from contamination. Despite this, once we were informed of the potential presence of E. coli at the spring source, we immediately shut down our operations, disinfected our bottling lines and initiated a voluntary recall in an abundance of caution and in the interests of consumer safety.”
E. coli contamination can have serious side effects, especially among the very young and very old and those with compromised immune systems. Symptoms include diarrhea, cramps, nausea, and headaches. In the most serious cases, it can lead to death.
Water can be affected by E. coli when it is contaminated by human or animal waste.
Niagara Bottling noted that there have been no reports of illnesses from the water. The company added that it completed product testing and found no contamination of any sort in the water.
A full list of stores affected by the bottled water recall can be found here.
[Image via The Citizen]