Some Jermuk mineral water may contain arsenic

Sat, 03/10/2007 - 3:28pm
By: The Citizen

Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Tommy Irvin warns consumers to the possibility of arsenic found in some bottles of Armenian mineral water.

Both the Georgia Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are warning consumers not to drink certain brands of mineral water imported from Armenia.

If consumed, there is a risk of exposure to arsenic, a toxic substance and known cause of cancer in humans.

Distributed nationally, the following products are being recalled: Zetlian Bakery, Inc., Pico Rivera, CA is recalling product with labels that read: “Jermuk Original Sparkling Natural Mineral Water Fortified With Natural Gas From The Spring”. The product is additionally labeled as “2006 Jermuk Mayr Gortsaran CJSC” and “Imported by: Zetlian Bakery Inc.”

Importers Direct Wholesale Company Los Angeles, CA is recalling the product with labels that read: “Jermuk Sodium Calcium Bicarbonate and Sulphate Mineral Water”.

The product is additionally labeled as “Bottled by ARPI Plant, Republic of Armenia” and “Exclusive US importer and distributor: Importers Direct Wholesale Co., Los Angeles, CA”.

Kradjian Importing Company, Glendale, CA is recalling the product with labels that read: “Jermuk, Natural Mineral Water Sparkling”. The product is additionally labeled as “Bottled by Jermuk Group CJSC” and “Sale Agent Kradjian Importing Co. Inc.” in Glendale, CA

The contamination was found when the FDA sampled 500 milliliter green glass bottles and detected arsenic. Scientists found 500 – 600 micrograms of arsenic per liter in tested samples. The federal standard of quality bottled water allows no more than 10 micrograms per liter.

Symptoms of acute arsenic exposure usually occur within several hours of consumption. The most likely effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain. Over the period of a few days to weeks, the kidneys, liver, skin, and cardiovascular and nervous systems could be affected. Extended exposure could lead to cancer and death. ###

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