Kraft Heinz, one of the world’s leading food conglomerates, issued a recall for more than 83,000 cases of its Kraft Singles American cheese slices. The recall was announced on September 20, following concerns that parts of the wrapper could remain on the cheese, posing a potential choking hazard.
The company, which is headquartered in Chicago and Pittsburgh, stated the recall was a precautionary measure.
This was initiated after it was discovered a faulty wrapping machine caused a thin strip of the individual film to remain on the slice even after the wrapper was removed. If this film sticks to the slice and is not removed, it could potentially cause gagging or choking, the company warned.
Kraft Heinz is recalling more than 83,000 cases of individually-wrapped Kraft Singles American processed cheese slices because part of the wrapper can stick to the slice and become a choking hazard. https://t.co/7V77gqQbTR
— The Associated Press (@AP) September 20, 2023
The recall affects a limited number of customers in the United States who purchased the 16-ounce Kraft Singles American Pasteurized Prepared Cheese Product with a ‘Best When Used By’ date between January 10, 2024, and January 27, 2024.
In addition, the company is also recalling the product’s 3-pound multipacks with a ‘Best When Used By’ date between January 9, 2024, and January 13, 2024.
Kraft Heinz has since fixed the faulty machine, but advised customers who have purchased the affected products not to consume them. Instead, they are asked to return them to the store where they were purchased for an exchange or a refund.
Customers who are concerned their purchased products might be part of the recall can also contact Kraft Heinz directly to request a refund.
The company was alerted to the issue after receiving complaints about finding plastic stuck to the cheese slices. Six customers reported that they choked or gagged as a result.
In response to these complaints, Kraft Heinz announced in May it was redesigning the packaging of its Kraft Singles with ‘easier to open individual wrapping’ and a refreshed logo.
Food company Kraft Heinz has issued a voluntary recall after nearly 84,000 slices of processed individually-wrapped American cheese were deemed to potentially contain choking hazards. https://t.co/uFeZDLz470
— ABC News (@ABC) September 20, 2023
The new packaging, which features a redesigned flap that is thicker and can be opened without tearing, is expected to be rolled out in late 2023. It remains unclear whether the latest problems with Kraft Singles are related to the new or old packaging.
Kraft Singles, first introduced in 1950, are reportedly purchased by some forty percent of US households. However, sales have been flat in recent years.
The company is trying to reinvigorate both the reputation and look of its staple products, including Kraft Singles, as part of an effort to boost sales.