Product recall attorneys at Pintas & Mullins report that Kellogg recently issued a voluntary recall of 36,000 packages of its Special K Red Berries cereal in three sizes, because they may be contaminated with glass. This is the second recall for food contaminated with glass particles this month.
Kellogg's is requesting consumers to check any Special K Red Berries products in 11-ounce, 22-ounce, and 37-ounce packages. Information on the affected lot numbers can be found here. Kellogg's is offering replacement coupons to all consumers with affected products, and may also request to retrieve the cereal for additional evaluation.
Just a few weeks ago, Nestle recalled Lean Cuisine frozen meals for the same reason. All Mushroom Mezzaluna Ravioli entrees were affected by the recall, although most lots had been consumed before the recall was announced. This was not the first incident of Lean Cuisines being contaminated with foreign objects.
In early 2011, more than 10,000 pounds of Lean Cuisine's spaghetti with meatballs were recalled after consumers in many states reported finding pieces of hard red plastic in their meals. Just a few years earlier, in 2008, more than 900,000 pounds of the frozen dinners were recalled, again because of pieces of plastic in the entrees. At least one person reported an injury from this, rendering it a Class I recall, which applies only to those products that have reasonable potential of causing serious adverse health effects or death.
Ingesting a foreign object, even something as small as a particle of glass or plastic, can have many implications in the human body. Some people simply pass the object through their system with only minor discomfort. In others, the particles may become embedded in the digestive tract, causing symptoms such as vomiting, pain, abnormal bowel movements, and signs of infection. Small, elongated, and sharp objects - such as glass - are more likely to get stuck in areas where the intestines narrow, like at the appendix or bowels.
If the object becomes lodged in the appendix, you can experience sudden appendicitis, which requires immediate surgery. There have even been reports of appendicitis developing in the months and years after initial ingestion. It is more likely, however, for sharp objects to induce appendiceal or bowel perforation or inflammation, which causes significant internal injury.
Plastic and glass are not the only objects contaminating mass-produced foods, however. In 2012, Kellogg issued a similar recall because its Frosted Mini-Wheats Bite Size Original and Mini-Wheats Unfrosted Bite-Size cereals were contaminated with flexible metal mesh fragments. This recall sparked anger amongst consumers, some of whom posted videos online of them running an earth magnet through a plate of the recalled Mini-Wheats. A substantial amount of cereal was picked up by the magnet.
After nearly 3 million boxes were recalled, the ordeal ended up costing Kellogg's between $20 and $30 million in earnings. Additionally, in 2010, certain lots of the company's Fruit Loops, Corn Pops, Honey Smacks, and Apple Jacks cereals had to be recalled because of strange smells and flavors. The unusual scent and taste was later attributed to defective packaging.
In 2009, Kellogg recalled lots of its Famous Amos, Keebler cookies, and Austin and Keebler peanut butter sandwiches for potential Salmonella poisoning. Kellogg later admitted that it cut too many jobs in recent years, which significantly contributed to the abundance of manufacturing problems that led to the recalls.
Food contamination lawyers at Pintas & Mullins urge anyone injured or sickened by the Kellogg cereals to report their injuries immediately and contact an experienced product liability lawyer who can help you obtain maximum compensation for you injuries.