By Nita Johnson
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — A local food distributor is recalling 1.77 million pounds of food due to an undeclared allergen.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently announced that products from Truitt Brothers Inc. in East Bernstadt, Ky., is recalling products formulated with hydrolyzed soy protein and dried soy sauce, which are known to produce allergic reactions in some people. The soy-based ingredients were inadvertently not listed on the label of some products. The products include self-stable pasta and ground beef products and 3.3 pound cases that contain six 9-ounce microwavable containers of Kraft Velveeta Cheesy Skillet Singles - Ultimate Cheeseburger Mac with a “Used By/Sell By” date of 02 MARCH 2014 - 23 OCT 2014.
The UPC Codes on the package is 2100004329 and identifying case codes are 00210000432900, 00210000432910, 00210000432925, 00210000464000 and 00210000465100.
These products were produced between May 6, 2013 and January 16, 2014 and shipped to Kraft Food distribution centers and retail locations nationwide. No other Velveeta or Kraft products are impacted by this recall.
The problem was discovered during a recent routine quality check by Truitt Brothers Inc., which then contacted the Food Safety and Inspection Service. The company believes the problem began when a label supplier mixed labels with incorrect ingredients with the labels listing the soy-based products.
As of yet, the company has not received any reports of any allergic reactions from anyone who might have consumed the products. Anyone who has experienced a reaction should contact their physician.
The FSIS conducts periodic recall effectiveness checks to verify firms to notify their customers in the event of similar situations, and to ensure that proper channels are being followed to recall the product. When available, the retail distribution list(s) will be posted on the FSIS website at www.fsis.usda.gov/recalls.
Joyce E. Hodel, media relations for Kraft Corporate Affairs, said consumers have several options if they discover they have purchased the specific items of the recall.
“Consumers who have questions about the products can contact the Consumer Relations number specific to the recall — 1-800-396-5512 — for assistance. Consumers can either take the item to the store where it was purchased or discard it. Kraft will be happy to send reimbursement and consumers should call the 800 number,” Hodel said.
Hodel did say that persons who are not allergic or sensitive to soy should not be affected if they do consume the items.
Consumers with food safety questions can “Ask Karen,” the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours per day at AskKaren.gov or via smartphone at m.askkaren.gov. “Ask Karen” live chat services are available Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern Time. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline number is 1-888-674-6854 and is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (eastern time) Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours per day.