Warning over Kinder products widened amid ‘extensive’ salmonella outbreak

15 cases of salmonellosis have been identified in Ireland to date, primarily in children
Warning over Kinder products widened amid ‘extensive’ salmonella outbreak

Sarah Mooney

A food safety warning over Kinder chocolate products in Ireland has been widened amid an “extensive” salmonella outbreak spanning multiple countries.

The HSE’s Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) on Friday urged all parents and carers of young children to ensure that they do not have any Kinder egg products at home, regardless of their best by date.

The Food Safety Authority of Ireland (FSAI) had previously recalled Kinder Surprise 20g and 20g x 3 products with best before dates between July 11th and October 7th, 2022.

However, a new food alert extending the recall to further Kinder products was issued by the FSAI today, advising consumers that these products should not be consumed and recalling all products irrespective of best by date.

The new products affected by the recall are as follows:

  • Kinder Mini Eggs 75g with best before dates between April 20th and August 21st 2022
  • Kinder Egg Hunt Kit 150g with best before dates between April 20th and August 21st 2022
  • Kinder Surprise 100g with best before dates between April 20th and August 21st 2022
  • Kinder Schokobons 200g with best before dates between April 20th and August 21st 2022

15 cases of salmonellosis, which form part of the outbreak associated with the products, have been identified in Ireland to date, primarily in children. The most recent Irish cases became unwell in mid-March.

Maker of the products, Italian confectionery group Ferrero, said on Friday it had suspended operations at its plant in Arlon, Belgium, after Europe's health agency began an investigation into the dozens of cases of salmonella.

Further cases

Irish health authorities said they have been working with UK authorities to investigate the outbreak of Salmonella Typhimurium, with the “great majority” of people who have become ill having reported eating Kinder products in the days before.

“Evidence gathered during the outbreak in Ireland, and in other countries, has been used to direct investigations to identify products that may be associated with this outbreak,” a statement said.

“As a result of the evidence provided by outbreak investigations, Ferrero has instituted an EU-wide withdrawal and recall of a range of products. In Ireland, the latest recall involves certain Kinder products produced since 1/6/21.”

Dr Paul McKeown, a specialist in Public Health Medicine at the HSE-HPSC, said that while there has been “a speedy recall” of the products, further cases of illness associated with the outbreak may still be seen.

Only a very small percentage of children who have eaten this product over the last few weeks has developed salmonella infection

“However, the likelihood of any individual child becoming sick as a result of eating this product is extremely low. Only a very small percentage of children who have eaten this product over the last few weeks has developed salmonella infection,” he said.

“The symptoms of salmonella infection in children (nausea and vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhoea) are mild in the majority of cases, and can be managed at home.”

Dr McKeown advised parents and carers to seek medical advice from a GP “if your child develops more worrying symptoms such as a lot of diarrhoea, diarrhoea with blood in it, a lot of vomiting, a high temperature or a nasty headache.”

“It is important to remember that the majority of children who develop vomiting and diarrhoea are unlikely to have salmonella infection, and are more likely to have a simple viral tummy upset, which can be treated simply with paracetamol and fluids by mouth,” he added.

Images of the affected products are available on the FSAI's website. "If you have bought any of these products, do not eat them, and do not give them as Easter presents," the HPSC said. Instead, contact the Ferrero consumer careline on +44 (0)330 053 8943 or email consumers.ireland@ferrero.com.

This article was amended at 8.25pm on 8/4/22.

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