What started out as a small spice recall aimed at peanut allergy suffers is now being called the most “widespread series of allergy-related recalls” in allergy labeling history. The U.S. Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA) went into effect in 2006, requiring all products to disclose potential allergens, such as peanuts, on product labels.
At the end of last year, Adams Flavors, Foods, and Ingredients issued a voluntary recall of some of its spices and products, because a supplier informed the company that its cumin contained peanut proteins that had not been declared. That same mishap now has been found to affect hundreds of products commonly found on grocers’ shelves nationwide.
According to Allergic Living, besides for the spices listed in the original recall, a variety of common products from hummus to seasoned meats are being pulled from the shelves due to the peanut allergy recalls. In fact, 350,000 pounds of beef, chicken, and pork products are included in the recalls over the cumin contaminated with peanut proteins.
“We were notified by our supplier, after theirs notified them,” Jim English, president of Campos Foods, one of the many companies set back in the series of recalls over peanut contamination, told Allergic Living.
Peanut allergy sufferers need to be aware of all products listed in the series of recalls, and stay updated as more products are being added as manufacturers are notified of the contaminated cumin. To add to the fears of peanut allergy sufferers, under United States labeling law, spices do not need to be declared, so if a product does not list cumin, it does not necessarily mean that it does not contain it.
Interestingly, not all of the cumin products being recalled for peanut contamination appear to be from the same source, according to Allergic Living, but most seem to have been sold near then end of 2014 and early this year. The contamination appears to have occurred overseas during cumin processing. So far, no deaths have been reported due to products involved in the recalls.
Products already participating in the growing series of recalls over peanut-contaminate cumin include Morningstar Farms’ black bean burgers, U.S. Foods’ beef fajita strips, certain hummus products, Adams Flavors, Foods, and Ingredients’ breadcrumbs, Campos Foods’ chicken, Garcia Foods’ pork sausage, Franklin Farms’ veggie burgers, Ortega taco products, and a couple of Private Selection products. It also includes a list of products sold at Target and Fresh Market nationwide.
Kids With Food Allergies stated that it will be updating any additional peanut allergy recalls related to the cumin contamination on the community blog.
In other peanut allergy news, Australian researchers recently reported groundbreaking new treatment for peanut allergy sufferers. The researchers hope to discover a cure for peanut allergies, because they have the potential to be so serious. With news of the series of recalls over peanut contamination in the cumin, a cure for this dangerous allergy can’t come soon enough.