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Prepackaged chocolate pies may contain allergen (almonds)
     A spokesman for the Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department today (March 19) said that a batch of prepackaged chocolate pies manufactured in Korea might contain an allergen, tree nuts (almonds), but it was not declared on the product's food label. Consumers who are allergic to almonds are advised not to eat the affected batch of the product. The trade should also stop using or selling the product concerned immediately.
     Product details are as follows:
Product name: Choco Pie Banana
Brand: Lotte
Place of origin: Korea
Manufacturer: Lotte Confectionery Co. Ltd.
Importer: Four Seas Mercantile Limited
Net weight: 336 grams/11.85 ounces per box
UPC: 8 45502 06140 7
Best-before-date: June 14, 2018 and October 23, 2018
     "The CFS, through its Food Incident Surveillance System, noted a notice issued by the Canadian authorities that several kinds of Lotte products are under recall because they may contain an allergen, almond, which is not declared on the food label," the spokesman said.
     Upon learning of the incident, the CFS immediately followed up with major local importers and retailers. Preliminary investigation revealed that the above importer has imported a total of 120 cartons of the abovementioned product, which were all distributed to a chain supermarket for sale. The affected product has been removed from shelves and is no longer on sale, and the importer has also initiated a recall according to CFS' instructions. Members of the public may call its hotline at 3473 0323 during office hours for enquiries about the recall.
     "Tree nuts (almonds) are a known food allergen. Those who are allergic to it may develop symptoms like vomiting, diarrhoea, asthma and rash upon consumption. In severe cases anaphylactic shock may even develop," the spokesman said.
     The spokesman advised consumers who are allergic to almonds not to consume the product concerned. Those who feel unwell after consuming it should seek medical treatment.
     The Food and Drugs (Composition and Labelling) Regulations (Cap 132W) require that all prepackaged food for sale in Hong Kong should list out the food's ingredients in its label. The maximum penalty upon conviction is a fine of $50,000 and six months' imprisonment.
     The CFS will alert the trade, continue to follow up on the incident and take appropriate action. Investigation is on-going. 
Ends/Monday, March 19, 2018
Issued at HKT 20:57
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