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Eight Pine-Sol cleaners recalled over infection-causing bacteria

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said Pseudomonas aeruginosa was found in some of the products. It can be resistant to antibiotics.

Eight Pine-Sol cleaning products are being recalled over fears they may contain infection-causing bacteria, the Consumer Product Safety Commission announced Tuesday.

The Pine-Sol Scented Multi-Surface Cleaners, CloroxPro Pine-Sol All Purpose Cleaners, and Clorox Professional Pine-Sol Lemon Fresh Cleaners produced at a plant in Forest Park, Georgia, may contain the natural bacterium Pseudomonas aeruginosa, which can cause infections in those with compromised immune systems, the commission said in a statement.

"In an abundance of caution, Clorox is recalling all of the above-described products manufactured at its Forest Park, Georgia facility through September 2022," the commission said.

Clorox, the parent company of the Pine-Sol brand, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Testing found the bacterium in the products made since January 2021, it said.

The germ can cause blood and lung infections, particularly after surgery, when it can spread from surfaces and hands to medical equipment, according to a white paper by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The commission said that while the bacterium is unlikely to affect people with healthy immune systems, those with compromised systems should beware.

"The bacteria can enter the body if inhaled, through the eyes, or through a break in the skin," it said.

Those at particular risk for infection include patients who use ventilators, as was common during the Covid-19 pandemic, as well as those who need catheters or have wounds from surgery or burns, the CDC said.

The germ has displayed resistance to antibiotic drugs, it said. "These germs can become multidrug-resistant," the CDC said.

Disinfectant cleaners boomed in demand at the beginning of the pandemic in 2020, when scientists feared Covid-19 could be transmitted easily by surviving on surfaces and transferring to humans through hands' contact with the face.

Researchers, however, largely discounted contact with everyday surfaces as a common mode of Covid-19 transmission.

Tuesday's recall applies to about 37 million individual products made since the start of 2021, the commission said.

Included are the Lavender Clean, Sparkling Wave and Lemon Fresh scents of Pine-Sol Scented Multi-Surface Cleaners; the Lavender Clean, Sparkling Wave, Lemon Fresh and Orange Energy scents of CloroxPro Pine-Sol All Purpose Cleaners; and Clorox Professional Pine-Sol Lemon Fresh Cleaners, the commission said.

Original Pine-Sol, which comes in pine scent, is not a part of the recall, it said.

Covered products have date codes beginning with "A4" followed by a five-digit number less than 22249, the commission said. Sizes range from 28 fluid ounces to 175.

The products were sold by Amazon, Walmart, Sam’s Club, Dollar General, Target, Home Depot, BJ’s, Kroger, Dollar Tree, Lowe’s, Publix and major retailers, the commission said.

Clorox will refund the purchase price with a receipt or the manufacturer's suggested price without one; proof of purchase that includes a photo of the product's 12-digit UPC code and the date code is required, the commission said.

The company's recall information page has more details.

After photographing the UPC and date code information, consumers should simply throw out any products covered by the recall, the commission said, bottle, liquid and all.