Child Receives Pharmaceutical Powder in Shipping Mishap

An 11 year old in Minnesota received a package of white powder instead of clothes her mom ordered.

Kristen Kazarian, Managing Editor

May 3, 2023

1 Min Read
pharmaceuticals shipping
A shipping mishap brought nearly 14 pounds of a white pharmaceutical powder to the doorstep of a family with a child expecting to receive clothes that were ordered online.Image courtesy of Kondor83 / The Image Bank / Getty Images Plus

In Grand Marais, MN, Matt and Maria Conlan's 11-year-old daughter was excited to get the clothes her mom ordered online a week prior.

But instead of fashion, the family received not clothes, but a drum containing nearly 14 pounds of white powder in plastic bags on Sunday, local Fox News 9 reported.

A packing list detailed it wasn't illegal drugs, but 5-fluorocytosine, a powerful pharmaceutical used to treat fungal infections.

Potentially deadly if ingested, the shipment from China was addressed to Conlan's daughter but was meant to go to a lab in Iowa.

"If she had placed her hand in it and then got it in her mouth and ingested any, she more than likely would have died," said Maria.

Lab technicians in Iowa got a surprise as well when they received Conlan's clothes.

"From what I found online, 250 mg of this would cost $966, and we have over 13 pounds that was delivered to our daughter," said Conlan.

FOX 9 reached out to DHL, the shipping company in charge of sending the items, who sent this statement to the television station:

"We can confirm that shipments were delivered to two addresses incorrectly after the shipping labels were mistakenly swapped at a processing facility. We have addressed this issue to prevent a similar error in future and are arranging for the shipments to be collected and routed to the correct recipients. We apologize to the recipients for any inconvenience."

That explanation is not good enough for the Conlans, who want to see more done to make sure this doesn't happen to any other families in the future.

"No warnings on the barrel, and our kids open packages all the time," said Matt.

About the Author(s)

Kristen Kazarian

Managing Editor

Kristen Kazarian has been a writer and editor for more than three decades. She has worked at several consumer magazines and B2B publications in the fields of food and beverage, packaging, processing, women's interest, local news, health and nutrition, fashion and beauty, automotive, and computers.

Sign up for the Powder & Bulk Solids Weekly newsletter.

You May Also Like