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Chobani Pulls Yogurt Cups, Says No Recall

UPDATE (9/3, 10:00 Pacific): Chobani has told Food Safety News that the affected product bears the code 16-012, with expiration dates ranging from 9/11/2013 to 10/7/2013. The article has been updated to reflect this information.

Greek-style yogurt maker Chobani has reportedly asked various grocery retailers in the U.S. to pull its yogurt cups from shelves over “isolated quality concerns” stemming from customer reports of foul-smelling, sour yogurt, which some customers have alleged sickened them.

The company has not issued a formal recall and has not made clear which of its products are affected by the quality concerns. (Update: the affected product bears the code 16-012, with expiration dates ranging from 9/11/2013 to 10/7/2013.)

“We have not issued a recall, but rather are working closing with select retailers to replace product that does not meet our rigid quality standards,” Chobani wrote on its Facebook page.

Chobani said the affected product does not pose a food safety concern.

When products are deemed defective but do not pose a safety risk to consumers, they may be removed from store shelves as a market withdrawal. Recalls are issued when the product could cause harm.

Food Safety News reader wishing to remain anonymous wrote in to say they had purchased a number of Chobani cups from a Safeway store in Oakland, Calif., and found several problems, including bloated cups and punctured foil covers. One cup, pictured above, had a punctured cover with contents bubbling out the top.

A manager at that Safeway store told Food Safety News they removed all of their Chobani products from shelves on the morning of September 1. The reader said they purchased yogurt there on August 24.

Commenting on a Chobani blog post titled “Our Promise to You,” a man claiming to work for Publix Supermarkets said his store removed Chobani products with best-by dates between September 7 and October 7.

A spokesman for Walmart said that Chobani asked their stores to remove specific products late last week, but said Chobani would have to tell media the exact product information involved.

A corporate customer support representative from Safeway said on Monday that he had not heard of any Chobani recall or request for removal of products from Safeway stores. A customer support representative for Target stores similarly had not heard of any problems.

Representatives for other Chobani retailers, including Walgreens and Kroger, have not immediately responded to inquiries.

Numerous customers have written on Chobani’s Facebook page and blog complaining of bloated containers and yogurt that tasted foul or was bubbling out of the foil cover. The company is asking dissatisfied customers to write into its online contact form or contact the company directly at care@chobani.com.

The FSN reader supplied an additional photo of a bloated yogurt container:

© Food Safety News
  • crs

    Hope these weren’t sealed under vaccuum.

  • Sandra

    I eat this brand everyday and have never found any of these problems. It’s a good product and I believe the company will make sure it stays this way!

  • Nikki

    I purchased the blended lime 4-pack from Safeway last week. One cup was bloated, and the yogurt was watery. I threw the whole pack out. This is not the first time I’ve had problems with chobani products.

  • Brenda Woodard

    My whole family eats the plain Chobani yougurt in the large tub and have never, ever had a problem!

  • Chris

    If you read their Facebook page you will find numerous reports of illness caused by the bad yogurt. This should be a full recall. Chobani is in denial of the danger foul diary can cause.

  • ruggybearla

    I have 5 out of 8 in various flavors that have gone puffy this weekend, and they are a couple weeks from expiration date, purchased in Los Angeles. May be time for the FDA to look into this.

  • Sherry

    I have 6 different cups in various flavors purchased on two different date with exp date of 9/20 and 9/25 that are all almost ready to burst. I eat this brand daily and have never had a problem before. I hope they fix it soon.

  • Ali K

    About 2 weeks ago I bought a 4 pack of vanilla plain chobani. All 4 were extremely bloated after I brought them home. I called chobani to report this. At that time, it didn’t seem like it was a real issue. The guy stated that if somehow the yogurt was heated up during transportation and then cooled again that this would happen. He asked for the the store name, expiration dates and time made. They also will be sending me a refund (have not received it yet). I have also not purchased any more…

  • Prisfiles

    Just ate (oops) a Blackberry cup that was slightly bloated. Gas is a product of fermentation and yogurt is a fermented product so I ate it anyway. It was delicious. I hope it remains so! Bought in TX (Galveston). Expiration date 9-28.

  • Franklin7777

    I’ve had about 6 of these explode in my fridge in the past few days.

  • Imatd

    We LOVE Chobani, but have also had problems in the last few batches of pineapple flavor we have bought. The tops were very rigid and about to burst do to something growing in there that shouldn’t have been. All of ours also had expiration dates between 9/20 and 9/25. My husband was convinced they were fine and tried eating one. Once he hit the fruit he knew they were bad. He was pretty sure there was a problem with the fruit.

  • me

    mine blew up after sitting on my desk for an hour. tasted like yeast, threw it out, no big deal.

  • Ynorecall?

    We had several from Costco and Safeway that were bloated and/or oozy. My husband ate one and had horrible diarrhea for 2 days

  • BTW

    Chobani always smells sour. That’s why I don’t buy them. Yuck.

  • Amelia

    I only had problems with black cherry, and recently bought a case from Costco. They’re in the freezer, and I’m defrosting them one at a time. When I tried the swollen black cherry yogurt it tasted disgusting and I tossed it and the other swollen one.

  • CD

    I have one in my possession and need to return it to the Walmart in Orange County. It looks just like the pic above.

  • BCO

    I purchased 6 of these of various kinds with exp dates of 9/26 & 9/27 and have thrown out 4 so far due to a bulging container–opening one that exploded into the sink. I have never had a problem either, and love this yogurt.

  • IveBeenThinking

    Thank you for this information. My fridge is FULL of Chobani yogurts. 2 of the Cherry flavored were bloated w air. When I opened, they popped. I threw them out.

  • konadawg

    I love Chobani but we have found approximately 20 bad cups of various flavors over the past 10 days. I called Chobani last week, and they are sending us coupons to replace those. Then yesterday one of the two large 32oz containers of plain we had in our fridge exploded… they both were bad.. guess I’ll be back on the phone to Chobani because those large containers cost almost $6/each. I don’t even remember what a ‘good’ Chobani yogurt smells like anymore.

  • Carlo Silvestr

    And why hasn’t Chobani issued a formal recall? Do they just want to keep their record clear and let the consumers suffer the consequences? If that’s the case that’s not right!

  • lpate

    I had to toss 11 containers due to swelling, frothiness, curdling and bad taste. I am in Anchorage, Alaska. There definitely should be a recall.

  • James

    Last week, I had a Chobani that was slightly bulging. I opened it, ate a few spoonfuls and noted that it tasted like alcohol. The expiration date was late September. A quick Google search revealed that a lot of people have had the bulging package issue with Chobani for quite a while.

    It’s caused by the yogurt reaching a low enough temperature that the yeast is activated, and starts giving off gas, causing the package to bulge and indeed turning the contents to alcohol. That night I had cramps.

    Today – after the long holiday weekend, I retrieved a Chobani from the employee refrigerator that was EXTREMELY bulging. I held it up to show a colleague when BOOM – the lid blew open and sprayed yogurt all over my black suit. The expiration date was October 1.

    My guess is that some of their recipes are fragile enough, that the yogurt cannot survive the non-refrigerated trip home. I think that’s a fundamental flaw, so I’m switching brands until Chobani provides a lot more details and some assurances.

    • val proven

      I have just decided to search recalls on yogurts because I have been eating chobani for the past week or more and just realized every time I eat it I get headaches after I eat it. So this morning I did my search and discarded the rest of my yogurt. And will never eat chobani again. I just hope it does not affect my health in anyway.

  • wesley perkins

    chobani sucks anyway i dnt see y any1 would buy it this jst makes it worse then what it already is

  • scottrose

    I ate a Chobani yogurt today, it had no problems and I am fine.

  • mick

    I had some of the effected yogurt and it tasted funny. I have purchased more this weekend and found it to be fine. throw out the bad stuff or take it back and replace it. Common sense people

  • Randal

    I had a Cherry yogurt that had all the issues reported here, but the product code is 15-012. I would feel safer if Chobani just came clean and told us what the problem was. As it is, I will avoid these for the near future.

  • Mcmd

    My family eats Chobani almost every day – I’ve had problems with the “flip” products and the tubes almost exploding. Ate the key lime flip and it was bad.

  • Jenni

    I got a couple of bloated ones too, at a Walgreens in San Francisco. I buy tons of these, and usually don’t have any trouble – just a couple of random ones. But seriously, people, if something smells or tastes funny, stop eating it!

  • lucyricardanon

    I realize that the bloating, oozing, exploding, and yeastiness are issues, but is sour yogurt really a problem? Isn’t yogurt supposed to be sour?

  • NCNana2389

    OK, I have a container that falls within those dates but I don’t see that code within the numbers on the foil lid. It’s not bulging but is cold. What do I do? Keep or toss? Not worth getting sick over but I like my Chobani.Would hate to throw away OK food for any reason. Advice?

    • Julie

      If it does not have that plant num16-012, it is considered safe.

  • Max

    It’s just fermentation, folks. Calm down. If you drink beer, you have no reason to complain. It just tastes funky.

    • Tom Menino

      Naw. I had a 4 pack of affected product and popped one and took a small bite and it wasnt just aggressive fermentation. It was nasty and almost stinging like something funky fell into the vat while it was cooking. Smelled like babys diapers. Called them and got a few coupons.

  • Joan

    Single cups purchased at either Safeway or Raley’s in Fremont were bloated and ready to blow after we checked them out today. Matched the date/# given in this article.

  • mam

    I actually ate some of the bloated ones over the last few weeks, but I have eaten my last one.

  • starletsb

    I noticed several of my cartons blooting with an expiration Date of 9/25/13. I definately will complain directly to the company. I love this brand so much!

  • Lori

    Wish this information was on our local news. As I was checking out our yogurt, I had the large plain one out and it popped the seal. So glad our daughter text me the information!!!

  • annie

    One exploded in my face when I took off the kids. The other three I had were puffy on the top. I brought them to the store where I bought them for a refund and they laughed. So much for Chobani. I suggest to all that you do the same.

  • annie

    They are not posting negative comments.What does that tell you.

  • Haggie

    This is not a one-time problem. I have had bulging containers from Chobani before. I’ve always just thrown them out and not thought much of it.

  • Janel

    I had 2 with mold in them even tho they weren’t expired last year

  • luvsracing55

    I have eaten Chobani every day for months. I ate at least 6 to 8 of the containers being cited in this “recall” in the last week. On saturday, I became very sick. I had SEVERE stomach cramps, nausea and the other wonderful “things” that come with them. I missed work yesterday and the whole holiday weekend was miserable. I went to work today, not knowing of the recall. I ate another, yes, another container with this lot number before a co-worker told me about the “recall”. I had NO idea what made me soooo sick but this is too much of a coincidence. I went to the store on the way home because I was out of yogurt AND I DID NOT NOT NOT buy Chobani…by the way, my stomach STILL hurts…..just wrong!

  • Nic

    This is not an isolated incident. This has happened to me repeatedly for the last 3 years. I open a container, taste the product and discover it’s sour and “fizzy.” I’ve called Chobani multiple times. They always blame the store and say the store isn’t properly refrigerating the product. Good to know it’s been Chobani the whole time. I had the yogurt yesterday with the expired date. I was violently ill afterwards. I chalked it up to being pregnant although I’m already 3rd trimester and haven’t had morning sickness in months. Now I know that Chobani essentially poisoned their consumers and won’t own up to it. I will never purchase this brand again!

  • KandyKate

    I went out last night about bought 6 Okiois instead of Chobani

  • KandyKate

    Danvill Illinois?? Isnt that where Rob Petrie is from?

  • KandyKate

    yeah,,power puking is NO fun

  • Erika

    Does anyone know if the Chobani Flips are also bad, they do say 16-012 ?!

    • Aubrey

      Yes. They are. You can find a whole list on the FDA website.

  • http://www.foodsafetynews.com/ Food Safety News Information

    Food Safety News will continue coverage of this issue as information becomes available. The company issued a recall today. The FDA announcement can be found here: http://www.fda.gov/Safety/Recalls/ucm367298.htm

  • Anon

    I just opened a Chobani Flip that had the 16-012 code on it. It had a lot of liquid on top of the yogurt, and even after stirring it well, it was clumpy like cottage cheese. It went straight in the trash …bummer :(

    • http://www.themodchik.com modchik

      good thing, mine looked the same but I gave it a good stir instead. 10 days later, my stomach and lower GI are beginning to feel OK. I had no idea I thought it was a parasite but now I get it. I had the code and the right date, all of it pitched. You can get them replaced by filing a request on their site.

  • Brenda

    I am so disappointed, and concerned, to learn of this most recent incident with Chobani yogurt.
    Upon returning to work today, a colleague mentioned this news to me, knowing I eat Chobani every morning, and, the fact I had to miss work yesterday for nausea and vomiting for no known attributable reason. I have actually experienced opening cups of Chobani yogurt, foil seal intact, two to three weeks before expiration date, only to find definite green and black mold on the surface of the yogurt. This first occurred back in 2011. I have also encountered cups with the lid bulging. Though my local grocer cheerfully exchanged my various inedible yogurt cups, I communicated these experiences directly to Chobani out of concern for the quality and safety of their product. An apology and a 50 cent coupon is not acceptable. My health, and losing time at work is too important. At this point in time, I have decided to explore other Greek yogurt options. I regret this situation for all the Chobani yogurt fans, but I cannot trust eating this product any time soon.

  • debbieh

    I live in Maryland and I just checked all of my containers and found a bloated peachy pistachio flip cup that I tossed. The rest have different codes and seem to be fine.

  • Linda Hanscom

    My daughter is currently ill after ingesting the recalled yogurt of which tasted different and had bulging lids. She has been sick with severe vomiting, diarrhea ,dizziness and weakness for the past 4 days. Chobani company needs to be accountable for this health issue and not undermining
    it with just replacement products and refunds. This is a serious issue!

    • Guest

      Yep, my husband ate one of the recalled yogurts (before knowing about the recall) and is extremely ill with flu-like or Montezuma’s Revenge symptons. Going on day 3 now. Not good!

  • Doda

    I had the same thing happen. I eat it daily, the first batch was watery I asked my coworkers if that was ok, they did not know. So I ate them 4 total. Then, this week I noticed my yogurt cup (the little bite containers) was bulging at lunch. I took two bites, told my coworker it tasted bad and I was afraid to eat more. I have been sick for 2 weeks now. So, I am wondering if the pre bulging containers were first watery ones maybe that was really too much for a human to bear.. I have been miserable and plan on seeing my doctor next week. A little worried here.

  • flowerchild77777 .

    I eat the 3.5 bite cups one a day. Two weeks ago I noticed that the yogurt had liquid, runny. I tasted it, it seemed fine so I ate 4 little cups that week. The next week, I was so sick that I had to go on a liquid diet for 4 days. On the 5th day I decided to have the last cup of yogurt before it expired. Wham, Then on Tuesday 9/3/13 I opened my cup of yogurt which was swollen took 2 bites and tossed it. My co worker that I had lunch with came in Thursday and informed me that their was a recall on that yogurt. . So, I have been sick with, diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, stomach pain, sleeping problems and weak for the last 3 weeks since the first cup of runny yogurt.. I am a little concerned about this. I am going to see my doctor next week.

  • csisenor

    I just finished eating one of these, it was bloated and the codes match the ones mentioned here. Is this a danger to my health? I wrote Chobani, but it is Sunday and they are all on the golfcourse so nobody is available by phone until Tomorrow.
    After I ate it, I found on the internet that it is recalled. This stinks.

  • CJ

    Just – had the same problem did a google search and what do you think – yep code 16-012 they need to recall even if we all ate it got sick or we threw it away – how about a refund and some customer service

  • Julie Vargas

    I have gotten sick two times originally the product code did not include the small yougart bite cups when I checked the web site. I kept eating it just within the last few days I thought it started tasting like fermentation, like it had a bite to it, and the top was bloating. I had gone to the doctor not knowing why I was feeling sick and having a low grade fever and stomach cramps lasting 1-2 days. I have a mold allergy and a compromised immune system this is not good for me at at all. Not a happy camper and this was my favorite yougart.

  • Bita Kay
  • Yvonne

    Wow, I am amazed at the number of people that think that there is nothing wrong with yogurt tops bloating and still eat a product like this. The yogurt fizzes and you think that is normal? I make my own yogurt and it keeps easily for a week (not that it lasts that long anyway) without any of this funky stuff. If you want good greek yogurt without all that sugar and other stuff in it, make it yourself. Easier than pie.

  • Lydia Deaver Hendrix

    I opened three individual size Chobani cups of yogurt this evening, two pineapple, one blueberry, with the expiration dates of 10/20 and 10/18. I eat both of these flavors regularly and love them. However, tonight they were so sour, even after adding 3 packets of sweetener, I could not eat the yogurt. I have thrown them away. Could something be wrong with batches other than the ones listed in the recall?

  • Nacho Nacho man

    Last week I ate my last expired one and unfortunately died. We should not take this recall lightly.

  • Kay Dee

    Voluntary recall doesn’t mean what most people think – it doesn’t mean it’s optional. Voluntary recall only means that the company initated the recall without having to be taken to court or otherwise legally compelled to do a recall, not that the recall may be ignored if you or your grocery store feel like.

  • Kay Dee

    How sad is it in this day and age that you have to tell people not to eat bulging product? Food products spoil, and temperatures matter.

  • treelady56

    I purchased a Chobani 18-pack of 6 oz. cups of Peach, Blueberry & Strawberry from Costco in Parker, CO. I have the same issues … leaky lids, bloated cups, fizzy texture & sour taste. All the
    websites that have listed affected states have not mentioned Colorado.

    More importantly … my product has a different code number & expiration date. The code on the
    top of the lids is: Oct 08 13 03:14 L7 36 8216.
    I plan to switch to another brand until Chobani resolves these ongoing issues & I’d recommend everyone to do the same. I’m concerned that Chobani has downplayed this situation & it’s more extensive that we know.
    I have a medical condition & eating yogurt helps with my ability to digest my meals. Anyone heard anything negative about Dannon Oikos Greek Yogurt & Dips? Thank you!

    • MM

      I bought a Dannon 1.5% 16 pack last week (expiry date Nov. 21) in Toronto. We have been eating them for the last few days. I noticed the one I picked yesterday had a buldging top. It tasted funny, so I threw that away. When I examined the others found one more with a buldging top. Rest is fine. Non-buldging ones tasted normal.

  • val proven

    I have been eating Chobani yogurt for a week and realized it has been making me sick. And I looked closer and realized the texture is different. Does anyone know if it can cause harm to my heath?