In an article published on March 10, 2017 the non-profit organization Foodwatch informed that the Belgian Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC) has recalled several Dutch waffles due to contamination with mineral oils. The recall was published on March 8, 2017 after the FASFC was alerted by the European Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF). People who have consumed any affected products and feel ill were advised to consult a doctor. Foodwatch contacted the Dutch Food Safety Authority (NVWA) and learned that the contaminated waffles were also sold in the Netherlands. The NVWA took the affected products off the market but did not make the recall public and refused to disclose the points of sale, Foodwatch reported. Foodwatch deemed it inacceptable that consumers were not informed about the contamination and highlighted its petition against mineral oils in food (FPF reported).
In an article published on March 15, 2017 by news provider Bakery and Snacks, editor Jenny Eagle provided a list of all the waffle products affected by the recall. The list comprises savory waffles (e.g. cheese, pesto) packaged in either plastic or cardboard. According to the RASFF, mineral oil aromatic hydrocarbons (MOAH) were found in the waffles at up to 190 parts per million (ppm, i.e. mg/kg) and mineral oil saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH) were found at concentrations exceeding 1,000 ppm.
The source of the mineral oil contamination was not discussed in either of the two articles. Mineral oil contamination in food can have different sources, such as transportation and production processes, food packaging made from recycled paper and board, or mineral-oil-based printing inks.
Foodwatch (March 10, 2017). “Recall vanwege vervuiling Nederlandse wafels met minerale olie.” (in Dutch)
Jenny Eagle (March 15, 2017). “Dutch waffles and cheese biscuits recalled for mineral oil contamination.” Bakery and Snacks