Another Melamine Recall: Three Cocoa Products

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) just announced another recall of a another food product over <"">melamine contamination. This time, Dorsey Marketing Inc. (DMI) of Ville St. Laurent, Quebec, Canada has voluntarily recalled three of its G&J Gourmet Market Cocoa Products:

  • G&J Hot Cocoa Stuffer Item 120144 is a hot coca product, contains UPC 061361201444, and was sold in small green and blue boxes with a backer card, candy cane, and marshmallows.
  • G&J His and Hers Hot Cocoa Set Item 120129 is a cocoa product, contains UPC 489702201296, and was sold with two ceramic mugs in a brown box.
  • G&J Cocoa item 120126 was sold in two flavors:  French Vanilla Cocoa and Double Chocolate Cocoa.  The G&J French Vanilla Cocoa contains UPC 061361201260 and was sold in a small green bag with a whisk attached.  G&J Double Chocolate Cocoa contains UPC 061361201260 and was sold in a small pink bag, also with a whisk.

Although no injuries have been reported, to date, a few samples have been found to contain melamine and DMI is proceeding with its recall.  The recalled products were imported into the United States by DMI and distributed nationwide to Big Lots during the weeks of September 22, 2008 and September 29, 2008 and to Shopko during the week of October 10, 2008.  The FDA is advising consumers who purchased these recalled products to return them to the place of purchase for a refund.  Consumers with questions may contact Tim Acheson of DMI Monday through Friday, excluding holidays, between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM EST toll free at 1-888-645-1053 or via his email at

Melamine is an industrial chemical used in the manufacture of fertilizer, fire retardants, and plastics and has been at the center of a global scandal originating in China over the adulturation of a wide variety of food products with a variety of contaminants.  In particular, melamine has been used in that country to falsify protein levels.  Because melamine contains such high nitrogen contents, it can be used to make certain foods—for instance intentionally diluted milk products—appear high in protein in certain tests, enabling producers and manufacturers to pass off sub-standard products as protein-rich.  The melamine milk scandal first broke after tens of thousands of Chinese babies were sickened, hospitalized, or died as a result of melamine contamination, which can lead to kidney problems such as kidney stones and kidney failure and, in the case of at least six babies, death.

Melamine has been found in dozens of products exported globally from China including milk teas and coffees, yogurts, candies, cookies, biscuits, cheese, eggs, and crackers, prompting international recalls.  It is believed the eggs became contaminated following feed contamination, which has since been linked to certain livestock, including chickens and pigs.  Although initial figures indicated about 50,000 children fell ill from melamine contamination, the Chinese government finally released information confirming that nearly 300,000 babies fell ill in that country with urinary and kidney problems linked to melamine tainting.

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