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14/06/17: Bread crumb supplier blames cross-contact for massive recalls

logo-Newly-Weds-FoodsThe multi-national corporation that produced cracker and bread crumbs implicated in massive food recalls in the U.S. and Canada says the problem wasn’t a labeling issue, but a “cross-contact” situation.

Newly Weds Foods Inc. is the ingredient supplier referenced but not named in multiple recalls posted in recent days on the FDA and USDA websites. The recalls involve fresh, perishable foods such as chicken salad as well as frozen meat and poultry products that have very long shelf lives.

“Out of an abundance of caution, Newly Weds Foods Inc. — NWF — voluntarily recalled specific lot codes of cracker meals and blended bread coatings due to the potential presence of undeclared milk from cross-contact during the manufacturing process,” a Newly Weds Foods spokesman told Food Safety News on Tuesday.

“Some specific non-dairy NWF cracker meal products made in the Watertown, MA, facility were discovered to have a small amount of dairy present. The root cause has been identified and corrective actions have been implemented. …The company continues to cooperate fully with all regulatory authorities.”

The spokesman declined to provide information about the total volume of cracker and bread crumbs Newly Wed Foods has recalled. He also would not say what percentage of the company’s annual production is under recall.

More than 3 million pounds of food was implicated in the recalls as of Tuesday. All of the recalls cite labels that fail to declare milk as an ingredient and allergen.

Both the Food and Drug Administration and the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection service have provisions that allow for recalled food to be relabeled and resold under some circumstances, which could include some of the food recalled because of the cracker and bread crumbs.

The spokesman for Newly Wed Foods said Tuesday the company did not have any information to release on the fate of its unused recalled bread crumbs or of the recalled products that contain them.

Three companies posted recalls Tuesday because of the bread crumbs with the undeclared milk ingredient. Click on the company names to read the full recall notices.

Joseph Seviroli Foods of Garden City, NY, is recalling 114,409 pounds of beef ravioli products produced from Jan. 9 to May 10. Brands covered in the recall are Lowes, Big Y, Seviroli, Best Yet and V’s.

Les Aliments Excel S.E.C. of Quebec, Canada, is recalling an unspecified volume of chicken bites. They are packaged under the La Cage brand.

Giant Eagle Inc. is recalling an unspecified volume of tilapia and chicken breasts sold in the fresh seafood and prepared foods departments, respectively, of its stores. Only the Market District branded toasted crumb tilapia, Giant Eagle brand toasted crumb tilapia, and Giant Eagle brand breaded chicken breast products are included in the recall.

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