Supermarket giant Coles has apologised after admitting that some chocolate blocks marketed to vegans actually contained milk.
The New South Wales Food Authority issued a statement stating Coles is conducting a national recall of Coles Sugar Free Dark Chocolate (100g) and Coles Sugar Free Dark Chocolate with Almond & Cranberry (100g) due to the presence of an undeclared allergen – milk.
The products were available to buy nationally, from Coles supermarket and online, from 30 March 2018.
The recall encompasses the full batch, with Coles stating that all blocks, no matter what date code, could be contaminated with dairy.
The dairy allergen was not specified on the product’s ingredients label, which advised that the chocolate was “suitable for vegans”.
Coles has a small range of products directly targeting vegan shoppers, including its vegan bliss balls and vegan chicken-style nuggets.
Unlike vegetarians, who can eat some animal derived products, vegans have a diet that is strictly animal free.
“We apologise to our customers for any inconvenience,” Coles said.
Consumers with a milk allergy or intolerance may have a reaction to the product and thus are being told to not consume it. If you are concerned about your health, the statement from the NSW Food Authority advises to seek medical advice.
Consumers can return the product to the place of purchase for a full cash refund, while Coles Online customers can contact the Coles Online call centre on 1800 455 400 to arrange a credit.
Coles is conducting a recall of Coles Sugar Free Dark Chocolate 100g and Coles Sugar Free Dark Chocolate with Almond & Cranberry 100g from Coles Supermarkets and Coles Online nationally, due to the presence of undeclared allergen – milk https://t.co/EUB2QEXu1Z pic.twitter.com/8sSUelgh2h
— NSW Food Authority (@NSWFoodAuth) April 22, 2018
Recent Coles Recalls
Coles has been in the headlines for a few other recalled products lately, including Creative Gourmet Pomegranate Arils. The 180g packets imported from Egypt with the best before date up to and including 21/03/20 were recalled due to hepatitis A fears. Earlier this month, Coles also withdrew all rockmelons because of a spike in listeriosis cases.
Additionally, its Coles Potato Salad was recalled due to the presence of undeclared gluten. Coles suppliers were blamed for the recall, with Coles stating “our suppliers inadvertently filled a number of Coles Potato Salad 250g containers with Coles Pasta Salad from the same range. As a result, some Coles Potato Salad 250g products contain the incorrect product, which also contains a higher quantity of gluten than indicated on the label”.