Rodent Infestation Causes a Massive Recall at 404 Family Dollar Stores

The FDA says that a rodent "infestation" at a Family Dollar distribution center was so bad that drugs, medical supplies, food, and more are being recalled.

family dollar recall 2022
Photo by Tupungato/Shutterstock

Family Dollar stores in six states are recalling an unknown number of items due to rodents, lots of rodents. The discount company has closed more than 400 stores in response, reports the New York Times.

The company's voluntary recall, shared by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), calls it a "retail level product recall of certain products." Though, the notice does not list all of the items that are impacted. The 404 stores involved in the recall received items that were stored and shipped from Family Dollar Distribution Center 202 in West Memphis, Arkansas. That facility was home to a rodent infestation that could have contaminated all the products stored there.

The FDA inspection, which was triggered by a consumer complaint, found, "live rodents, dead rodents in various states of decay, rodent feces and urine, evidence of gnawing, nesting and rodent odors throughout the facility, dead birds and bird droppings, and products stored in conditions that did not protect against contamination. More than 1,100 dead rodents were recovered from the facility following a fumigation at the facility in January 2022. Additionally, a review of the company’s internal records also indicated the collection of more than 2,300 rodents between March 29 and September 17, 2021, demonstrating a history of infestation."

The recall includes all drugs, medical devices, cosmetics, dietary supplements, and human or pet food sold since January 1 of this year. Though, the recall does not include anything shipped directly to the stores. That includes frozen and refrigerated food. The potentially contaminated product was distributed to the stores in this list, which includes locations in Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, and Tennessee.

In its notice, Family Dollar, which exists under the parent company Dollar Tree, says that no illnesses have been reported. Though, when we're talking about a rodent problem so bad that it's causing a massive recall, that might not be much comfort to anyone who has purchased these items. 

The FDA warning issued prior to the recall came with a statement from Judith McMeekin, Associate Commissioner for Regulatory Affairs, who noted that families rely on the Family Dollar for food and medicine. "They deserve products that are safe," they said. "No one should be subjected to products stored in the kind of unacceptable conditions that we found in this Family Dollar distribution facility. These conditions appear to be violations of federal law that could put families’ health at risk."

The store says that customers may return products under recall to Family Dollar locations even if you no longer have a receipt.

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Dustin Nelson is a Senior Staff Writer at Thrillist. Follow Dustin Nelson on Twitter.