The Following OU Kosher Advisories and Alerts were released by the Orthodox Union's Kosher Division on the date indicated.
Please remember to always check the label before purchasing any item that needs kosher certification!
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Products: White Cranberry Strawberry Juice Cocktail UPC: 1116607461
Company: Supervalu Inc. - Eden Prairie, MN
This label mistakenly bears an unauthorized OU and is not kosher. Consumers who see these products with an OU should please contact 212-613-8344. The product is being withdrawn from the market.
Products: Gummy Bears and Gummy Worms
Company: Diamond Foods - Fishers, IN
This product is not OU certified. A small quantity of these products have been distributed with an OU symbol on the outer box. The boxes are being re-labeled. Consumers who see these products with an OU should please contact 212-613-8344.
There is an issue that has been observed (so far exclusively) in Gefen sardines from Portugal canned in 5769 and 5770. Several other brands from other countries have been checked and found to be clean. We have yet to observe the following concern in any other OU sardine products.
OU Mashgichim checking the gut cavities of sardines have recently discovered small white worms around the internal organs of some sardines (not IN the stomachs, which is a separate issue regarding krill in the stomach of some sardines from Canada). These worms can be distinguished from various sardine blood vessels and sinews in that the worms maintain their shape fairly rigidly, even when agitated in water. They can be curled up or spread out, found most commonly on the underside of the ovaries. The Shulchan Aruch differentiates between parasites found in the flesh of fish (which are permitted) and those found in the stomach, head, behind the ears, etc (which are forbidden).
Due to the difficulty involved in removing the parasitic worms found in the abdominal cavity of sardines, consumers are advised to return unopened cans of Gefen sardines from Portugal to their store of purchase, for a full refund.
In addition, skinless and boneless sardine products are free from this issue.
The Orthodox Union continues to research the issue, and will advise further should we discover this issue in any other products.
Products: Suillus Luteus Mushrooms (in jar) Mixed Mushrooms (in jar) Champignon Mushrooms (in jar)
Company: Prime Foods USA LLC - Philadelphia PA
These products mistakenly bear an unauthorized OU, and do not meet OU kosher standards. The company is implementing corrective measures. Consumers who see this product with an OU should please call 212-613-8344.
Products: Flavors for Coffee - Mocha
Company: McNeil Nutritionals - Fort Washington, PA
This product erroneously bears the OU-Pareve symbol although it contains a dairy ingredient. All future cartons will be printed with the correct OU-D designation.
Products: Corn Pops - 8 ounce
Company: Better Made
This product which is available in OH and MI is labeled with an OU, however, it contains non-certified ingredients. It is being recalled, and corrective measures are being implemented.
Products: Frozen Gravlax Smoked Salmon
Company: 7 Seas Company - British Columbia, Canada
Consumers of OU products are advised not to consume 7 Seas Gravlax Smoked Salmon, as it appears that a non kosher ingredient was used in that product. Consumers that see the product in the market should please contact the Orthodox Union at 212-613-8344.
Products: 24 Hour Thermogenics Choco Lettes
Company: Health Management Care a.k.a. Diet Center
This product bears an unauthorized OU-P mark. This product is not certified by the Orthodox Union, and is not kosher for Passover. Corrective measures are being implemented. Consumers who see this product should please call the Orthodox Union at 212-613-8344.
Products: Hickory Smoked Almonds
Company: Suntree LLC - Orosi, CA
This certified product contains dairy ingredients as listed on the ingredient panel but the dairy designation has been inadvertently omitted. Future packaging will be revised.
We have been contacted by a number of consumers noticing the presence of “shrimp” in sardines. This is actually krill, a small shrimp-like crustacean, which is a common source of feed for sardines. Krill is normally digested prior to processing and should not be found in canned sardines, even sardines which contain the stomach. This year, many factors (e.g., size of fish, warmer water temperatures, methods of fishing, etc.) combined to create a very unusual fishing year and an increase in sardines containing undigested krill in their stomachs.
This issue is not one of quality, species substitution or adulteration of any sort: rather an unexpected and previously unforeseen occurrence, which now requires our attention.
While the presence of undigested krill is a rare occurrence, and fluctuates seasonally, the stomachs of all sardines should be removed to eliminate any concern. Skinless and boneless sardines are not affected, as their stomachs have been removed.