FDA Warns of Arsenic in Jermuk Mineral Water

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has alerted consumers to a recall of Jermuk brand mineral water due to high levels of arsenic in the product. Arsenic is a known carcinogen, and overexposure to arsenic can lead to short-term symptoms including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain. Prolonged exposure can lead to kidney, liver, skin, cardiovascular, and nervous-systems problems and possibly cancer and death.

At this point, three different products are subject to the recall: Jermuk Original Sparkling Natural Mineral Water Fortified with Natural Gas from the Spring (sold in the U.S. by Zetlian Bakery, Inc.); Jermuk Sodium Calcium Bicarbonate and Sulphate Mineral Water (sold by Importers Direct Wholesale Co.); and Jermuk, Natural Mineral Water Sparkling (sold by Kradjian Importing Company).

Jermuk’s products are imported from Armenia, and no accounts of serious illness have been reported so far. However, the FDA said that their testing of the product found arsenic levels to be at 500 to 600 micrograms per liter, or at least 50 times higher than the FDA’s standard of 10 micrograms per liter. The FDA tested Jermuk’s 500 milliliter green glass bottles and discovered the problem, but they are still investigating whether other product types or sizes are affected.

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