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Flour recall hits major US brands

Knock-on effect: US flour recall sifts through industry

By Kacey Culliney, 26-Feb-2013

Related topics: Food Outbreaks

A US flour and grain blend recall has hit major brands including Frito-Lay and Mondelez and forced widespread precautionary recalls on snacks, cereal and biscuit products.

Dakota Speciality Milling issued a voluntary recall on a selection of its speciality flours and grain blends on February 14 due to the possible presence of thin metal wire fragments from a defective screen.

The flour and grain ingredients supplier said the recall was initiated as a precaution and all affected customers had been notified with recall instructions.

One week later Frito-Lay issued a recall on two varieties of its SunChips brand and Mondelez announced a nationwide recall on two belVita breakfast biscuit varieites.

Both Frito-Lay and Mondelez have confirmed to that the action was related to the Dakota Speciality Milling recall.

In the same week Bimbo Bakeries USA also issued an extensive voluntary recall on a number of its brands due to the possible presence of flexible wire caused by a faulty screen at a third party flour mill. Bimbo has yet to link the recall to any particular supplier.

‘Food safety is our highest priority’

Speaking exclusively to this site, vice-president of sales and marketing at Dakota, Wayne Flood insisted that food safety is the company’s highest priority.

“We’ve never been involved in a recall in 44 years,” Flood said.

“We identified the problem immediately and there is now an investigation underway. It’s a case of process and equipment improvement,” he said.

In a statement, Dakota said: "The company is committed to product safety and is allocating its full resources to resolving this incident and to ensuring that all preventive measures are in place for the future."

While the vice-president of sales and marketing would not discuss clients affected, he said that the recall had not impacted international business.

Products pulled as a result

Frito-Lay issued a voluntary recall on all dates of its SunChips 6 grain medley 9oz packs in Creamy Roasted Garlic and Parmesan & Herb flavors.

Mondelez issued a voluntary recall on its Apple Cinnamon and Chocolate varieties of its belVita breakfast biscuits in the US and Puerto Rico.

Bimbo made a voluntary recall on a number of its brands – Arnold, Brownberry, EarthGrains, Farm, Harmons, L’Oven Fresh, Stroehmann and Sara Lee.

Other products impacted by the Dakota recall include two Heartland granola cereal varieties and a number of Wegmans bread varieties including wholegrain, white rolls and pita products.