One lot of Ferrero’s Kinder chocolate is being recalled in Lithuania because of a soapy aftertaste and smell.

The State Food and Veterinary Service of Lithuania (VMVT) said action was prompted by a consumer complaint about the chocolate from Poland having a foreign odor and taste. It advised consumers who had bought the implicated batch to return it to the place of purchase.

VMVT officials said a check was done on Kinder chocolate with lot number LO87HG-1A in packs of 12 with expiry date Nov. 8, 2018, at Eugesta – an international distribution company. Testing on a sample revealed unusual organoleptic characteristics of the chocolate.

A total of 14,400 packs were received from Poland by the distributor for the Lithuanian market.

Eugesta said it is currently investigating and taking all the actions required by national authorities as well as informing Ferrero Group about the issue.

Ferrero Poland told Food Safety News that no problems occurred during production of the batch in Germany by Ferrero oHG mBH.

“As Ferrero, we checked our internal records related to the involved product and, upon further analysis by SGS – Institut Fresenius, we can confirm that no quality or safety issue occurred at production time,” said a spokesman.

“Moreover, SGS also analyzed some samples of the product marketed in Lithuania and found the presence of some molecules commonly used as food flavoring components (e.g. eucalyptus oil, limonene, etc.) that affected the usual taste and smell of the product. According to scientific studies, this organoleptic deviation does not pose any concern from a food safety and human health point of view.”

SGS is an inspection, verification, testing and certification company with more than 95,000 employees and a network of more than 2,400 offices and laboratories worldwide.

The Ferrero spokesman said the occurrence was probably due to incorrect storage or handling of the product with non-food items during one of the last steps of the delivery chain in Lithuania.

“We have not been informed about similar complaints in any other country. We are currently working closely with the Lithuanian distributor to support it in its investigation on the reported case as well as on all necessary actions required by local authorities,” he said.

“As a responsible manufacturer, we would like to reiterate our full commitment to supply safe and high quality products to our consumers as per our usual Ferrero standards and in full compliance with local applicable legislations.”

Earlier this year, the Ferrero Group acquired the U.S. confectionery business of Nestlé for $2.8 billion in cash to become the third-largest confectionery firm in the U.S. market.

Ferrero brands in the U.S. include Tic Tac breath mints, Ferrero Rocher pralines, Nutella hazelnut spreads, Fannie May and Harry London chocolate.

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