Please note: This post is from 2010 and does not reflect a response from the most recent news coverage from November 2014 about another mold finding that was videoed and shared on Facebook 80K+ times.
After the outcry of questions, demands, and worry from consumers, Kraft has posted a Capri Sun FAQ on their website to offer some answers.
Here is a copy of the FAQ text. You can also visit the Kraft Capri Sun FAQ page.
We appreciate that our Facebook followers are so engaged and willing to share their point of view. Whenever you have questions about one of our products, it’s important that you’re in the know about what we know. It’s also important that you have the most accurate and up-to-date information from us. You can find answers below to some of your most pressing questions. Let’s keep the lines of communication open.
— Vinay Sharma, Director, Capri Sun Beverages
Why have you been so slow to respond?
We take every consumer contact seriously and responded immediately to the consumer. As soon as we received their sample, our quality experts began their initial testing. They confirmed that it is mold and quickly shared those results with the consumer and our Facebook followers. However, out of an abundance of caution, we are also working with an independent lab for additional analysis of the sample. It will take some time to get those results. Unfortunately, scientific analysis is slower than the pace of communication today.
Are you taking a chance in waiting so long and not issuing a recall?
No. An issue with a single pouch does not indicate a broader problem, particularly because we were told from the start it was a leaking package and this product is preservative free. When a leak occurs, a preservative free beverage can spoil and mold can grow. We believe that is what happened here. Because this can happen, we include a message on the carton that consumers should discard any leaking or damaged packages.
How does Kraft Foods know the mold is not harmful?
While unpleasant, it is more of a quality rather than a safety issue. However, we take consumer concerns very seriously and have sent the sample to an independent lab for additional analysis. Because this product contains no preservatives, when a leak occurs, the beverage can spoil and mold can grow. That’s why discarding leaking or damaged packages is the right step. In fact, we include a message on the carton encouraging people to do this.
So, this is a common occurrence?
No, but it does happen from time to time because the product is preservative free. And that’s exactly why we include a message on the carton that consumers should discard any leaking or damaged packages.
Does the mold form more often in warm weather?
The weather or humidity has little or no effect on whether mold forms. Given that there are no preservatives in the product, even from a microscopic hole can introduce air and mold can begin to form.
What can you do to prevent this?
Adding preservatives would be one option but we know that consumers appreciate that Capri Sun is preservative free. Through the years, we have made adjustments to minimize leaks. However, there’s just no way to guarantee a pouch is never cut or punctured. That’s why there’s a statement on the carton, recommending consumers discard any leaky pouches.
Was cost the only consideration in not issuing a recall?
Not at all. The safety of our products and the well-being of our consumers are our highest priorities. Based on some previous incidents, we were reasonably certain the problem was mold, which is more of a quality issue related to leaking packages than a food safety issue.
Is Capri Sun made in China?
No. Every Capri Sun that is sold in the United States is produced in the United States. U.S. labeling laws require that we reference the country of origin (in this case China) on the package when apple juice concentrate is sourced from there. We source as much of this ingredient as we can from the United States, but there’s not enough available here to meet our needs. Please be assured that regardless of origin, all ingredients we use in Kraft Foods products comply with our rigorous food safety standards, which meet, and in many cases exceed, the government’s requirements.
Who are Claire and Anne-Marie? Are they real Kraft Foods corporate employees?
Yes, Anne-Marie and Claire are Kraft Foods employees and moderate this Facebook page. They’re here to answer your questions. http://www.facebook.com/KraftFoods?v=app_17037175766
Does Kraft Foods understand why I am worried?
Absolutely. We regret this situation and understand that it is unpleasant. Many of us are parents, too, so we care about what our kids and your kids drink. The safety of our food and the well being of our consumers are critically important to us. And we’re doing everything we can to address the situation as quickly as possible.