Kinder Surprise chocolate eggs are a classic treat come Easter, but if you see less of them on the shelves this year, this could be why.
Ferrero International S.A., the multinational manufacturer of branded chocolate and confectionery products, is recalling Kinder Surprise eggs from global retailers due to a potential contamination with salmonella bacteria - including products available in New Zealand.
There have been several cases of illness overseas reportedly linked to the product - which is manufactured in a Belgian factory - but there has yet to be a confirmed case related to the consumption of a Kinder Surprise in Aotearoa, according to the Ministry for Primary Industries.
Currently the Kinder Surprise Maxi 100g (Natoons variety) with batch number L298R03UNB and a best before date of August 23, 2022 has been recalled from New Zealand retailers and is confirmed to be affected by the potential contamination.
The following types of products have been recalled overseas and may also be in New Zealand:
- Kinder Surprise
- Kinder Surprise Maxi
- Kinder Mini Eggs
- Kinder Schokobon
- Kinder Egg Hunt
- Kinder Mix
- Kinder Maxi Mix
- Kinder Happy Moment.
People who have Kinder Surprise eggs at home are encouraged to check the label to ensure it is not affected by the recall, New Zealand Food Safety's deputy director general, Vincent Arbuckle, said on Thursday.
"If you are in any doubt please return the product to the place of purchase. It is important to note that more details regarding the specific batches affected by the recall will be published shortly on our recall page. We encourage people to visit the page for ongoing updates," he said.
"Kinder products are made in a number of countries and affected product comes from only one Belgian manufacturer, so we encourage people to carefully check batch numbers.
"Anyone with [an] affected product at home should not eat it. It should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase.
"We know these products, which contain small toys, are particularly popular with children, so we urge people to take every precaution. The effects of salmonella infection can be serious, particularly in children younger than five years, adults 65 and over, and people with weakened immune systems.
"If you or a family member has eaten product affected by the recall and have concerns for your health, seek medical advice.
"Most people infected with Salmonella develop diarrhoea, fever, and stomach cramps six hours to six days after being exposed to the bacteria. The illness usually lasts four to seven days, and most healthy adults recover without treatment."
New Zealand Food Safety will provide more details on the recall on its website shortly.