Breakfast sausages sold at Trader Joe's grocery stores have been recalled for failing to properly disclose allergens in the product.
Chicken breakfast sausage produced and packaged by DiLuigi Foods and sold under the Trader Joe's label is currently under active recall for its failure to properly disclose allergens in the product, the USDA announced according to AZCentral.
The sausages contain the allergen soy lecithin but did not have it listed on the package. The mistake was discovered during a routine label verification process, according to an official release.
Nearly 3,500 pounds of chicken sausage are affected by the recall, and all packages prepared and shipped Aug. 10-24 have the misleading labeling. Affected packages were sold across New England and the East Coast.
Soy lecithin is a common additive to help the consistency of food by allowing water and oil to mix more easily, according to Refinery29. Products including mayonnaise, chocolate and other oil-rich foods typically contain soy lecithin.
Because soy lecithin contains soy proteins, and the USDA classified it as a major allergen to protect those with severe soy allergies. Recent studies have shown there is generally not enough soy within soy lecithin to trigger an allergic reaction for those who have an allergy to soy.
The release from the USDA's Food Safety and Inspection Service said it had not yet found any cases of an allergic reaction due to the mislabeled sausages. USDA classified the recall as Class II, its middle tier for recalls, stating: "This is a health hazard situation where there is a remote probability of adverse health consequences from the use of the product."
Class I recalls from the USDA are the most severe, and consumption of a Class I recalled product could reasonably cause "serious, adverse health consequences or death." Class III recalls are the least severe and generally come with no health warnings.
Trader Joe's has a standing statement on its website about recalls, pledging to keep food safety and quality paramount in its code of conduct.
"While there are aspects of our product supply-chain beyond our direct control, we will never leave to chance the safety of the products we offer," reads the statement on the chain's website. "We err on the side of caution and are proactive in addressing issues. We take action quickly, aggressively investigating potential problems and removing product from sale if there is any doubt about its safety or quality."
According to its website, Trader Joe's has issued recalls on nine occasions in 2017.
Those who have bought the sausages should discard them or return them to a Trader Joe's store for a full refund.