A little too much iron in Special K, Corn Frosts

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A little too much iron in Special K, Corn Frosts

Consumers found assembly line pieces, both metal and plastic, in three brands of Nongshim-Kellogg’s cereals, and the Korea Food and Drug Administration said on Thursday it ordered the manufacturer to recall over 12,000 boxes of cereal.

The two brands being recalled are Special K and Corn Frost cereals with expiration dates of Jan. 17, 2010, and March 17, 2011 respectively.

According to the state-run food regulator, it launched an investigation after customers complained they found metal and plastic pieces in three brands of cereals. A 22-centimeter-long (8.7-inch-long) metal stick was found in a box of Corn Frosts and a metal lattice measuring 4.5 centimeters by 5 centimeters was found in a box of Special K. The metal stick was part of a machine that discharges air while packaging the product and the lattice was used for separating products.

A official with the KFDA, however, said the regulator decided not to recall boxes of Chocolate Chex with an expiration date of March 24, 2011, because the industrial item found in one box “poses little risk for damaging teeth.” A box of Chocolate Chex contained a plastic piece measuring 4 centimeters by 4 centimeters. The KFDA said it was part of a plastic tool that moves products on the factory line.

The regulator also requested administrative government agencies to order Nongshim-Kellogg’s to improve its manufacturing procedures.

Lee Ju-won, a public relations worker at Nongshim Kellogg’s, admitted there were some flaws with machines during manufacturing. “The company has recalled all boxes of cereals that are believed to contain metal pieces,” Lee said.

The recall follows the KFDA’s announcement Monday that it ordered the nation’s largest discount store, E-mart, to recall 1,080 bags of bread crumbs after it received a complaint from a customer on April 27 that she found what appeared to be a dead mouse in the product. The bread crumbs (expiration date Sept. 16, 2010) are sold under the E-mart brand and manufactured by Samyang Milmax’s Asan plant. The KFDA is conducting an inspection of the plant. Other products made in the plant have been banned from sale.

“It is expected to take about a week to determine how the substance ended up in the product,” said Lee Jae-rim, an official with the agency.

By Kim Mi-ju, Park Tae-kyun [mijukim@joongang.co.kr]
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