Ferrero does not remember an isolated case: How safe is food?

Berlin. This recall affected many families. Shortly before Easter, Ferrero had to remember several chocolate products after children who once loved sweets fell ill. surprise egg Or eat candy chocolate.

the reason: salmonella In the Belgian factory of the manufacturer. According to the European Union’s Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), this bacterium has so far caused about 190 infections across Europe, 14 of which are in Germany. More diseases can be prevented by mass recall.

Incidents like this bother consumers again and again and raise the question: How safe is our food? In Germany, authorities had to warn about 93 products by mid-April this year or withdraw them from the market due to defects – 81 of them food.

That was nearly a third more complaints than it was in the same period last year when 65 products “” It has been reported, the Federal Bureau of Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) reports to this editorial team.

Recalls: Salmonella and Listeria are often the cause

The most common cause of complaints was microbiological contamination (16 cases) – such as salmonella or listeria – as well as Impurities By foreign objects (16 cases) such as broken glass or plastic. All product categories were affected – from sausages, meat, fish, cereals and baked goods to ice cream and chocolate.

The latest cases are on the portal Warnings vor einem französischen Ziegenkäse, der mit Bakterien verseucht sein könnten, ein Pflanzenextrakt, in dem Salmonellen nachgewiesen wurden, sowie eine „erneute Ausweitung” für diverse Schokoladen dieprodukte” Mark Zon mit„ Ferramge e brine s der mäng stand up.

In the case of Ferrero, a salmonella infection was detected in production in the area of ​​two raw materials tanks at the Belgian factory in Arlon It was first observed on December 15, 2021. The official recall of Ferrero products took place in Germany on April 5 through Ferrero and on the portal “”, operated by the federal states and the BVL.

background: Ferrero remind: these products are affected

Ferrero recall: Affected plant closed

The consequences for the consumer were only extracted when “further investigations” revealed that the salmonella detected in the Belgian plant “a genetic match with salmonella from several salmonellas.” disease cases in many European countries, including Germany,” says Ferrero.

“When we realized, working with food safety authorities, that there was a link between Arlon’s findings and cases of salmonella, we acted immediately,” Ferrero At the request of this editor. Within a week, there was a “complete recall” of all Kinder products manufactured in Arlon.

Ferrero said the Arlon plant had been closed and would not reopen until “it has been approved by the local authority”.. Affected products were traded from sales rack It has been removed, and the price of purchased products is refundable. Ferrero also advised anyone who has ever purchased such a product to “not consume it”.

Also interesting: Recall Ferrero: photos of damaged products

Recalls: BVL chief calls for better data sharing

Consumer advocates Criticism that information about contamination was passed on with delay. “While the authority in Great Britain recalled products on April 2, there were only recalls in Germany on April 5,” the consumer organization Foodwatch criticizes.

Additionally, “Both Ferrero and monitoring authorities Salmonella has been found since December 2021 — but only now, almost five months later, there have been public recalls,” Andreas Winkler of Foodwatch criticizes: “If something like this happens, residents should be warned immediately. “

The consumer organization is convinced: “Individual controls and personal responsibility on the part of manufacturers are not enough. We need Transparency commitments To the authorities, even cases like Ferrero are announced immediately. After all, it is about avoiding harm to health.

In Germany, the companies themselves are primarily responsible for food safety self control Responsible. “Once a company determines that the food it produces poses a health risk, it is legally obligated to inform the responsible food control authority as soon as possible” (BVLK), says Anja Tittes, Federal President of the Federal Association of Food Inspectors in Germany.

Recalls: The companies themselves are responsible for the information

In addition, there are random risk-oriented checks by authorities to determine if companies are complying with the Duty of Care. But in principle, the system of self-regulation is effective, Titus believes. “We have a high level in Germany level in food safety.”

However, there is also from the point of view of the authorities need improvement. Friedel Kramer, head of the Federal Bureau of Consumer Protection and Food Safety, demands that “transparency must be increased in protecting consumer health through better data sharing.”

“To do this, as the coordinating federal authority, we must obtain not only data from product samples from the federal states, but also from operational controls All data from official controls in Germany must be centrally available and must be accessible to the relevant government and federal authorities for evaluation.

“Related to food disease outbreak In order to remove it and stop it faster, we also require a systematic recording of disease-causing germs,” says Kramer. “This is important in order to identify the foods responsible for a cause in an outbreak situation and conduct epidemiological investigations.”

There is still much to improve for the benefit of consumers. Because all experts are sure: the following food scandal It will definitely come.

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