Gel cups recalled from 25 countries because of choking risk

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Mini jelly cups from Taiwan have been recalled from more than 25 countries because they may pose a choking risk.

ABC jelly fruit cup sweets are subject to recall because of the presence of gel-forming food additive ingredients. The additives are E407 (carrageenan) and E410 (carob or locust bean gum). E numbers are codes for food additives used in the European Union.

All batch codes and dates of Girl Jelly Fruity Bites; Boy Jelly Fruity Bites; Fruitery Jelly Assorted Jar; Fruitery Jelly Assorted Bag; Jelly Straws; Pentagon Cup Jelly Snacks Bag; Pentagon Cup Taro Bag; Pentagon Cup Taro Jar; and Assorted Jelly Snacks are affected. None of the alerts mentioned any reported injuries linked to the products as of the posting of the recall.

The jelly cups have a fruity taste such as strawberry, grape, pineapple and apple.

Manufacturer and importer
Danish authorities first raised the alarm about the flavored gel products because the size of the product posed a risk of suffocation for young children if they try to swallow it whole. Authorities advised consumers to discard the confectionery.

A notice from Icelandic officials has Tsang Lin Industries Ltd. as the manufacturer and country of production as Taiwan. It was imported into Europe by Asia Express Food BV, based in the Netherlands, according to a Croatian recall alert.

Presence of the additives does not represent a danger to health but can be a risk in food that has jelly like consistency because it makes the products more solid and can cause suffocation, mostly in children. Risk of choking is mainly because of the size, shape and firm consistency of the gel.

A Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF) notification lists Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United Kingdom as receiving the implicated products.

Earlier this month, Rong Shing Trading Ny Inc. of Brooklyn, NY, recalled XI Zhi Liang fruit jelly cups in the United States because of potential choking hazards.

The issue was found during a routine inspection by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, Food Safety and Inspection. The gel cups were distributed nationwide in retail store in the United States.

Small jelly cups containing konjac powder have been implicated in choking deaths of children. These products are subject to an import alert and are not permitted for entry into the country. Konjac is listed under E425 in Europe.

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