Today saw the release of the ExpertRECALL Index, a compilation of the various recalls that have taken place throughout the first quarter of the year. The trends contained therein are important to understand, as they can help regulators take steps to protect consumers, food companies eliminate circumstances which typically lead to a recall, and consumers themselves become more aware of injurious conditions.
In regards to food recalls, which for the first time included Department of Agriculture data about things like meat and poultry, a whopping 73.4% of recalls involved a company that announced more than one recall. The reason has to do with one defective ingredient typically being found in more than one product.
Food recalls most often had their genesis with the presence of foreign materials, with 28% of food recalls stemming from that issue. The second most common reason for a recall was the presence of an undeclared allergen.
Recalls of consumer products (which can be found on the website of the Consumer Product Safety Commission) were down even as the number of units affected went up. More than 6 million units in this category were recalled, but it’s important to note that one particular recall accounted for 2.3 million items.
Drug recalls are also on the rise, with the number of recalls issued by compounders increasing dramatically thanks to increased attention from the Food and Drug Administration after a widespread outbreak last year.