Sinister switch: Flour for formula

Tampering with formula is a federal crime. Somebody tampered with formula in Hot Springs.

HOT SPRINGS (KATV) - A Hot Springs mom says she paid $40.00 for a can of baby formula. Instead...she suspects she got a can of flour.

She noticed the difference before mixing up a bottle.

Eating raw flour can make you sick so thankfully this alert mom noticed and her child did not become an unintended victim of what was likely a refund scam.

Two-month old Sawyer is fortunate that even when his mom is sleepy-eyed and even when it might wake him up, she turns on a light when mixing his formula.

"My concern was that...daycares,” says Heather Nichols. “And dads that don't make bottles on a regular basis. Or moms that get up at 3:00 am to make a bottle that don't turn the light on. It was a sealed container. It could happen to anyone."

Nichols of Hot Springs says she bought a can of formula at a Neighborhood Market Walmart store.

Wednesday morning when she opened it she noticed it looked and smelled different.

"It smelled like flour,” says Nichols. “That's exactly what it smelled like. You kind of pinched in in your hand and it felt like flour. I mean that is what I think it was."

Last year a Tucson woman was convicted of switching formula for flour in a refund scam.

Tampering with formula is considered a federal crime.

Nichols brought the can back and says that Walmart exchanged it without question.

"The general manager was very polite, very nice,” says Nichols. “Told me he was going to contact the company and make a report himself."

We have tried without success to reach Walmart about this incident. In the past following similar incidents Walmart spokespersons have said that while the company does accept returned cans of formula it does not restock them on store shelves.

When this same thing happened to a Portland mom back in December the FDA opened an investigation.

Air date: August 15th, 2018

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