Stericycle releases an analysis of food recalls in the U.S

10 Sep 2020

As a result of the limited regulatory oversight activities by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture during the pandemic, food recalls dropped 44% in the second quarter, according to a report from the Stericycle. At the same time, the U.S. experienced its first-ever nationwide recall of onions and peaches by the FDA.

In the second quarter of 2020, there were 79 recalls from the FDA affecting 7.8 million units of consumer packaged food. Overall, 44.4% of those events involved poultry products, and milk represented one-third of the undeclared allergens identified in recalls. This past quarter represented the 12th consecutive quarter where undeclared allergens were a top cause for recalls - 43% of the units that were recalled had undeclared allergens.

Stericycle releases an analysis of food recalls in the U.S

Bacterial contamination was the cause of 13 recalls at the FDA, and Stericycle said this number represented the fewest number of bacterial recalls in more than a decade. Other sources of recalls included mislabeling, contamination by foreign objects and issues with quality.

FDA recalls remained on a downward trend in July but are expected to rise through the rest of the year, per the report. At the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), recalls inched up in July.

Quarterly recall activity at the USDA was due mainly to the presence of foreign material in products or lack of inspection, which accounted for one-third of recalls each. Poultry products were the most heavily affected category with 44.4% of all recall events attributable to this segment.

While recalls are down across the board, consumer concern with health and safety is up thanks to the ongoing threat presented by the coronavirus. In the U.S. the proliferation of this disease resulted in the closure of dozens of meat processing plants across the country, which put a strain on supply chains and caused animal protein prices to jump during the second quarter of the year.

At a regulatory level, there were also changes to the food safety environment. The FDA relaxed food labeling requirements multiple times in light of COVID-19 with the intention of assisting companies needing to make minor formulation and ingredient changes in response to issues of scarcity or supply chain constraints.

While the FDA was relaxing labeling requirements it was also in the process of releasing its “New Era of Smarter Food Safety: Blueprint for the Future” after months of COVID-19- related delays. This food safety blueprint offers guidelines to enable technology frameworks in traceability to facilitate foodborne illness response and prevention. It is not yet implemented.

With efforts to modernize food safety in the works, the U.S. government is working toward reducing the overall number of recalls, albeit due to a reduction in need rather than oversight.

Related news

Nestlé buys Freshly for $950M

Nestlé buys Freshly for $950M

20 Nov 2020

Nestlé acquired Freshly, a startup that provides home delivery of healthy meals, for $950 million at the end of October. The acquisition comes with the option for additional payouts of $550 million that is contingent on the successful growth of the bus...

Read more 
Beyond Meat unveils the next generation of its Beyond Burger

Beyond Meat unveils the next generation of its Beyond Burger

18 Nov 2020

Beyond Meat will release two new versions of its Beyond Burger: one with increased juiciness and the other with an improved nutritional profile. Both burgers will launch across the U.S. in 2021.

Read more 
Plant-based brand No Evil Foods pledges become plastic negative

Plant-based brand No Evil Foods pledges become plastic negative

17 Nov 2020

No Evil Foods is the latest company to establish a laudable and aspirational sustainability goal, committing to become plastic negative by remove two pounds of plastic for every one pound they generate through a partnership with rePurpose Global. The b...

Read more 
Plant-based energy shots experience buzz in the market

Plant-based energy shots experience buzz in the market

16 Nov 2020

Plant-based options are making inroads into a variety of categories within the food and beverage market. Go Big and Proper Wild are two new entrants into the space that are taking aim at a small category that has yet to experience significant innovatio...

Read more 
Innova identifies transparency as the top trend for 2021

Innova identifies transparency as the top trend for 2021

13 Nov 2020

As 2020 prepares to turn to 2021, Innova Market Insights released its industry trend analysis for the upcoming year to help manufacturers align products with consumer demands in food and beverage.

Read more 
Israeli cell-based meat company Meat Tech 3D files for U.S. IPO

Israeli cell-based meat company Meat Tech 3D files for U.S. IPO

12 Nov 2020

Israeli cell-based meat company, Meat-Tech 3D, is a relative newcomer to the industry but is making up for lost time with a flurry of activity. Most recently, the company filed its paperwork with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to begin the...

Read more 
Coca-Cola reveals its new paper bottle prototype

Coca-Cola reveals its new paper bottle prototype

11 Nov 2020

Atlanta-based beverage company Coca-Cola announced that it is testing a paper bottle prototype this month for both still and carbonated beverages. While this prototype will be tested in limited markets, Coca-Cola said that it is “too early” to specific...

Read more 
Plant-based food maker Alpha Foods launches DTC platform

Plant-based food maker Alpha Foods launches DTC platform

10 Nov 2020

California-based Alpha Foods launched its direct-to-consumer (DTC) platform in the U.S. to take advantage of the growing market for plant-based and e-commerce delivery options. The company's products will also continue to be sold at brick and mortar re...

Read more 
Whole Foods releases Top 10 food trends for 2021

Whole Foods releases Top 10 food trends for 2021

9 Nov 2020

This year marks the sixth year that Whole Foods has released its annual trend predictions for food and beverage. While some trends look familiar and are an extension of years past, 2021’s list of up-and-coming products has also been heavily influenced ...

Read more 
Higher egg intake linked to lower stroke risk in Asia, but not North America and Europe

Higher egg intake linked to lower stroke risk in Asia, but not North America and Europe

6 Nov 2020

A new study published in the Frontiers in Nutrition journal found that egg consumption is linked to a lower risk of stroke. However, when researchers broke this correlation out between global regions, they found that this trend held true in Asia, but n...

Read more