We have an update regarding Daily Harvest’s French Lentil + Leek Crumbles recall. In cooperation with the FDA, prepared vegan meal delivery service Daily Harvest has recalled their French Lentil + Leek Crumbles after receiving reports of gastrointestinal illness and liver damage from consumers that had eaten the product.
Around 28,000 bags of the French Lentil + Leek Crumbles were distributed between April 2 and June 17, 2022 to consumers and PR influencers like Abby Silverman. Consumers report issues including high fevers, dark urine, itching and hives, abnormally high levels of liver enzymes, abdominal pain, and other symptoms that generally coincide with gastrointestinal distress and injury. CNN reports that at least two consumers’ reactions to the product led to a gallbladder removal surgery.
Daily Harvest is cooperating with the FDA in addressing the issue, although all toxicology and pathogen results haven’t pointed to a definite cause of the crumble-related illnesses. Drori notes that testing has been negative for Listeria, E.Coli, Salmonella, Staphylococcus Aureus (Staph), B.Cereus, and Clostridium Species. Testing has been initiated for mycotoxins, including aflatoxins We initiated testing for a wide range of toxins known as mycotoxins, including aflatoxins. These tests have also not produced any results. Drori assures consumers that other DH products are unaffected and reiterated the company’s commitment to QC and product and ingredient tracing.
Launched on April 28, the crumbles product was created from lentils, quinoa, hemp seeds, butternut squash, and crimini mushrooms. Daily Harvest advised consumers on June 17 to toss the product and issued store credits to purchasers. While initially posting a link in bio for their advisory and potentially laying the fault on consumers for not fully heating the product (lentils and other legumes should be fully cooked to avoid toxic reactions to lectin, a protein that can bind to the digestive tract), Daily Harvest is now unambiguously recalling the Lentil crumbles.
Here’s the full announcement:
Updated as of July 19, 2022 at 3:45PM ET
An update about our French Lentil + Leek Crumbles investigation from founder + CEO, Rachel Drori.
Hi, it’s Rachel. I started Daily Harvest in 2015 with the mission to make it easier to eat more sustainable fruits and vegetables every day that make you and our planet healthier.
Since then, we’ve served over 120 million pounds of organic whole fruits and vegetables across 140+ delicious and nutrient-rich dishes to millions of customers. It is a privilege to create a better system of food by offering convenient, sustainable and nourishing options to you and your family. I’ve never taken this lightly. And it’s why I’m reaching out today with the current results of the investigation into our recent recall.
On June 17th we initiated a voluntary recall of French Lentil + Leek Crumbles. At the same time, we launched an investigation into what could have caused this problem. We have been working closely with the FDA, the CDC as well as top doctors, microbiologists, toxicologists and three independent labs to find the answer. We considered all possibilities, including processing issues or infection, and have ruled all of them out: Hepatitis A, Norovirus, a range of mycotoxins, including aflatoxins, food-borne pathogens including Listeria, E.Coli, Salmonella, Staphylococcus Aureus (Staph), B.Cereus, and Clostridium Species and major allergens including egg, soy, milk, and gluten. Testing also confirmed there are no pesticides or the presence of heavy metal levels that would have caused the reported adverse effects.
At this time, we have identified tara flour as the cause of the issue. Our extensive investigation has involved many experts analyzing data from all sources. We have only used this ingredient in French Lentil + Leek Crumbles and we are no longer sourcing from this producer who does not provide any ingredients for our 140+ other items. This was the first and only time we’ve used tara flour, which has been available and used in the North American market as a plant-based source of protein prior to our use. Our investigation team will continue working with the FDA, the tara flour producer and others to help determine what specifically made people sick.
As we’ve continued our testing sequencing over the past four weeks and reviewed consumer reports and medical records (including analysis by medical toxicologists and food safety experts), the data has repeatedly indicated that the issue is isolated to French Lentil + Leek Crumbles. The testing process and investigation also validated the safety of our supply chain and manufacturing processes. We are confident that we continue to uphold the highest standards for quality and safety. You can safely enjoy the rest of our 140+ items with confidence.
I appreciate the trust you put in Daily Harvest every time you feed your family. What you put on your table is what we put on ours, and your health and safety are our top priority. I want to personally apologize to anyone who has been impacted as well as reaffirm my commitment to making sure this experience provides lessons we can implement. We’re also working with those who experienced adverse reactions to help them.
Anyone with additional questions or concerns should contact [email protected]. It is a privilege to serve you and your family, and we are committed to continuing to nourish you with safe and nutritious food.
Here’s the full notice:
Updated as of June 27, 2022 at 3:30PM ET
A message from our Founder and CEO Rachel Drori
Hi. It’s Rachel.
I’m reaching out today to update you on everything that we are doing to get to the root cause of the issues that have been reported with our French Lentil + Leek Crumbles. We are working 24 hours a day, seven days a week on this. You deserve answers.
We have spent the past ten days working with the FDA, state agencies and multiple independent labs, as well as experts in microbiology, food safety and toxicology to conduct testing. These tests cover common food-borne pathogens, toxins, and allergens. Results thus far have all come back negative. At this point, despite consulting with numerous experts, cooperating with FDA’s investigation, working with our supply chain, and conducting extensive testing, we have not yet identified a cause. I also want to reassure you that this issue is limited to our French Lentil + Leek Crumbles and does not impact any of our other 100+ menu items.
I recognize this is so frustrating. I am incredibly frustrated. In the absence of a definitive answer at this time, I would like to keep you updated on our process:
When we initiated our voluntary recall, we immediately began a thorough, top-to-bottom investigation of our manufacturing facilities, food and supply chain:
The FDA and the state Department of Agriculture have each inspected the facility where the French Lentil + Leek Crumbles were manufactured.
Testing is being conducted in partnership with ISO 17025 certified 3rd party laboratories on French Lentil + Leek Crumbles as well as the ingredients used in them.
So far, testing has come back negative for food-borne pathogens including Listeria, E.Coli, Salmonella, Staphylococcus Aureus (Staph), B.Cereus, and Clostridium Species. Testing on major allergens including egg, soy, milk, and gluten have also so far come back negative.
We initiated testing for a wide range of toxins known as mycotoxins, including aflatoxins. The first round of testing on the most common have come back negative but we continue to cast a wider net to ensure we are not missing anything.
As the investigation has not yet identified a root cause, we are expanding our testing regimen to explore other potential, albeit less common, sources of contamination as well as protein and amino acid profiling.
While some of these tests can be completed within 24-72 hours, many take up to 7 days or more to produce results. We are working as fast as possible to get you the answers that you need and deserve.
We are confident this issue is limited to our French Lentil + Leek Crumbles and does not impact any of our other 100+ menu items. We are still eating and feeding our families all of our other products and they are safe for you to do the same. Daily Harvest has always held ourselves and our suppliers to the highest food safety and quality standards throughout our supply chain. We have a robust best-in-class testing protocol designed to ensure your safety:
The ingredients that go into our food are rigorously tested prior to preparation, and our manufacturing partners adhere to strict quality, food safety and sanitation guidelines.
We have a thorough tracing process in place to ensure we can follow our ingredients throughout the supply chain.
We perform quality control testing on every batch of food we produce to ensure it meets our rigorous standards.
If you purchased French Lentil + Leek Crumbles, you’ve likely heard from us already a few times in the past week. If you have ordered Crumbles for an upcoming box, it’s been removed. We’re working to collect as much information as possible to find an answer.
We’ll continue to share more information as it becomes available. You can expect to hear from us as soon as we know more.
Published June 23, 2022 at 6:10PM ET
Daily Harvest has voluntarily recalled all French Lentil + Leek Crumbles due to consumer reports of gastrointestinal illness and potential liver function issues.
From April 28 to June 17, 2022, approximately 28,000 units of the recalled product were distributed to consumers in the continental United States through online sales and direct delivery, as well as through retail sales at the Daily Harvest store in Chicago, IL and a “pop-up” store in Los Angeles, CA. Samples were also provided to a small number of consumers. Daily Harvest directly notified by email those consumers who were shipped the affected product, and other consumers for whom the company had contact information, and consumers were issued a credit for the recalled product.
Consumers who may still have the recalled product in their freezers should immediately dispose of it.
French Lentil + Leek Crumbles is a frozen product packaged in a 12oz white pouch with the words “Daily Harvest” at the top, a large “CRUMBLES” immediately below the top and the words “French Lentil + Leek” in bold, as shown below. All lot codes of the French Lentil + Leek Crumbles are affected. No other Daily Harvest products are affected or part of this recall.
To date, the company has received approximately 470 reports of illness or adverse reactions. Consumer safety is our highest priority, and we have taken immediate steps to stop production and distribution of the product and conduct a root cause investigation, which is ongoing.
This recall is being made in cooperation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Consumers who have questions or would like to report adverse reactions should contact Daily Harvest by email at [email protected] or by visiting https://www.daily-harvest.com/content/french-lentil-leek-crumbles-advisory# or by calling 1-888-302-0305 9am – 9pm Eastern Time, 7 days a week.