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Food safety: some coconut milk drinks have undeclared dairy

Food safety warning for some coconut milk drinks

Date: 23 Sep 2015

MPI is warning people with milk allergies or intolerances to avoid drinking some imported coconut milk drinks.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) is warning people with milk allergies or intolerances to avoid drinking some imported coconut milk drinks that may contain milk or milk products as these allergens are not declared on the label. Under Australian and New Zealand food legislation, products which contain a presence of milk or milk products, must state that on the label.

MPI’s Chief Executive has issued a statement under the Food Act 2014 warning people with milk allergies or intolerances to avoid the products which are itemised in the statement.

MPI's Chief Executive statement issued under the Food Act 2014

MPI Manager Compliance Operations, Gary Orr says Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has notified MPI that these products have been recalled in Australia.

“There have been two reported cases in Australia of severe allergic (anaphylactic) reactions associated with the consumption of coconut milk drinks. At this time, there have been no reported cases associated with drinking these products in New Zealand,” says Mr Orr.

“There is a possibility some of these products are still on shelves in New Zealand. They are stocked in various retailers such as dairies, ethic food stores and specialist sports stores.”

In addition to issuing the warning to consumers, MPI is working with importers to stop the sale of the products concerned, until they are labelled correctly.

MPI is working closely with Australian authorities on product testing and is waiting on further test results which may result in further warning statements and recalls.

Find out more

Food Smart website

• call MPI’s consumer helpline on 0800 693 721.

If you have any health concerns seek medical advice, see your GP or call Healthline 0800 611 116.

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