Australia recalls gummies because of a link to hospitalizations

A warning has been issued in Australia following several people falling ill after eating a type of gummy.

People are being urged not to consume Uncle Frog’s Mushroom Gummies after several people went to hospitals across the country with symptoms of toxicity. All cases recovered and were discharged from the hospital.

Food Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) posted a recall for Uncle Frog’s Mushroom Gummies of the Cordyceps and Lion’s Mane varieties sold online.

The agency said food products containing unapproved novel ingredients, such as Lion’s Mane and Cordyceps, may cause adverse symptoms if consumed. Oz Brands Pty has recalled all best-before dates and batch codes of the gummies, which come in a 36-gram bag.

State warnings

New South Wales (NSW) Health reported at least five people had been treated in hospitals after ingesting the gummies since April.

Western Australia (WA) Health said one person in the state had recently been to hospital.

Dr. Paul Armstrong, WA Health’s acting chief health officer, said people who have purchased these products should dispose of them safely, away from children and pets, to avoid accidental consumption.

Victorian health officials revealed there had been “several” hospital presentations linked to consumption of the gummies.

“People have reported becoming unwell after consuming even a small amount of these products. Investigations are underway to try and determine what is contained in these products that may be making people unwell,” said Dr. Evelyn Wong, acting chief health officer.

In South Australia, a teenage male was found in an unresponsive state earlier this month after eating several of the gummies. He was given treatment and has now recovered. 

Dr Kimberly Humphrey, public health medical consultant, said the noted effects of the gummies are alarming.

Reported signs and symptoms of toxicity include nausea and/or persistent vomiting; seizure-like activity and involuntary movement; anxiety; disturbing hallucinations; drowsiness or loss of consciousness; dizziness or lightheadedness; and a racing heart or pulse.

It is not yet clear what may be causing the toxicity; it may relate to cannabinoids or other substances. Product packaging lists the contents of gummies, including non-psychoactive mushrooms (cordyceps or lion’s mane) and hemp-derived extract. On some packaging, hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) or cannabidiol (CBD) is listed.

“Customers shouldn’t eat or open this product and should dispose of it safely or return it back to us. Any consumers concerned about their health should seek medical advice,” said a statement from the company.

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