Recall Review Mondelēz Global LLC Conducts Voluntary Recall Due to Undeclared Peanut Allergen

Recall Review

July 3, 2023

Mondelēz Global LLC Conducts Voluntary Recall of Two Varieties of belVita Breakfast Sandwich Products Sold in the United States Due to Undeclared Peanut Allergen

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

EAST HANOVER, NJ – July 3, 2023 – Mondelēz Global LLC announced today a voluntary recall of two varieties of belVita Breakfast Sandwich products, manufactured in the United States and sold nationwide, due to the possibility that the products may contain undeclared peanut resulting from cross-contact on a single manufacturing line. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to peanut may risk serious or life-threatening allergic reactions by consuming these products.

This recall is limited exclusively to the belVita Breakfast Sandwich products listed in the grid below, available at retail stores nationwide. No other belVita products, Mondelēz Global LLC products, or markets outside the United States are included in or affected by this recall.

Review and Recommendations

Undeclared allergens, such as peanuts, are life-threatening; even the smallest amount can trigger a fatal reaction.

The details listed in the write-up indicate the source is from cross-contact on a single manufacturing line.

Without all of the specifics, I will assume that this line produces products with and without allergens, with a full cleaning in between products.

If that is the case, I suspect that there is an inspection after cleaning and before the start of production, including a visual inspection and allergenic swabs, etc. and that everything passed.

I have been involved in a similar situation, and all inspection steps had passed, however, much later in the production run, nuts were identified, and the entire lot was suspected and therefore destroyed.  Thankfully in our case, the product was on a positive release, and the nuts were identified before the product was shipped into the marketplace.

Possible Root Causes of Cross-Contamination of Undeclared Products Within an Operation

There are a number of factors that can cause the introduction of undeclared ingredients.

  1. Contaminated ingredients
  2. Using incorrect ingredients
  3. Using incorrect utensils and equipment
  4. Using incorrect packaging
  5. Cross-contamination from employees
  6. Ineffective cleaning of utensils and equipment
  7. Improper post-cleaning and pre-production inspections
  8. Failure to follow GMPs
  9. Failure to escalate and report findings
  10. Cross-contamination from tools or equipment during mechanical repairs/changeovers
  11. Improper training

How can you keep yourself, your employees, and your company safe?

  1. Review the company’s receiving and ingredient storage policies and practices.
  2. Provide detailed training on allergens and allergen management. Be sure to explain how critical it is and provide statistics on the ramifications of undeclared allergens.
  3. Explain how current Good Manufacturing Procedures (GMPs) can safeguard the cross-contamination of allergens.
  4. Conduct a detailed review of your cleaning and inspection processes to ensure they are effective and identify all of the potential contamination/harborage areas.
  5. Review all of the SOPs that pertain to allergen control and management.
  6. Ensure all team members are aware of the escalation policy.

Together we can all do our part to be advocates for prevention and drive out recalls worldwide!

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