Kraft Heinz Issues Voluntary Recall of Select Kraft Singles American Processed Cheese Slices

Kraft Heinz Issues Voluntary Recall of Select Kraft Singles American Processed Cheese Slices

When a company announces a recall, market withdrawal, or safety alert, the FDA posts the company’s announcement as a public service. FDA does not endorse either the product or the company.

Company Announcement

Kraft Heinz is announcing a voluntary recall of approximately 83,800 cases of individually-wrapped Kraft Singles American processed cheese slices that were shipped to a limited number of customers.

The voluntary recall comes as a precaution after a temporary issue developed on one of our wrapping machines, making it possible that a thin strip of the individual film may remain on the slice after the wrapper has been removed. If the film sticks to the slice and is not removed, it could be unpleasant and potentially cause a gagging or choking hazard.

Only Kraft Singles American processed cheese slices with the case/package information below are affected. No other varieties or sizes are included in the recall.

The issue was discovered after we received several consumer complaints about finding the plastic stuck to a slice, including six complaints of consumers saying they choked or gagged in connection with the issue. No injuries or serious health issues have been reported.

Kraft Heinz has fixed the machine that wrapped the affected slices and all other processing machines have been thoroughly inspected.

Review and Recommendations

Since the issue may have developed after normal running conditions, over an extended period of time, after an operator adjustment, a change in packaging materials, or from a maintenance activity, there are some steps you could put in place to minimize a similar failure.

  • Ensure employees are trained, SOPs and Operator Checks are provided, and verification steps are established.
  • Have recommended baseline settings available for reference.
  • Establish a layered testing program that various departments execute, and verification checks are conducted. Departments/Staff should include operations, quality, maintenance, shift leads, supervisors, and managers.
  • Set criteria for QA sampling and ensure critical tests are conducted.
  • Verify all system alarms and notifications are working properly.
  • Verify all inspection systems are operating as designed and system checks are being conducted at the appropriate frequencies.
  • Establish increased testing and monitoring frequencies following specific events, i.e., a mechanical intervention, packaging change, or system failure.
  • Make sure paperwork and electronic documents are filled out properly and reviewed per the company’s requirements and prior to the shipment of products.
  • Have an escalation plan established to communicate any process deviations or system failures.
  • Ensure that products are dispositioned properly and that there is no chance of products being accidentally shipped prior to your organization’s release protocols.
  • Verify that your company has a pre-shipment procedure to inspect finished products for damage, ensuring product packaging systems (wrap, container seals, etc.) function as designed.
  • Have a process that secures or removes substandard products immediately so they cannot be accidentally shipped.
  • Test your hold, release, and shipping systems to ensure they function as designed.
  • Communicate and enforce your organization’s Management of Change procedures for mechanical and programming changes.
  • Have a “Product Showing / Review” conducted daily by top management to review what was produced in the last 24 hours.

As you review these areas, look for gaps where you could have an area of opportunity or risk and address it immediately.

By Focusing on Key Areas Within the Operation, Together We can Drive out Recalls Worldwide!

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