A STATEMENT FROM NERADA TEA – PRODUCT RECALL
On Monday 22 February 2021, Nerada Tea Pty Ltd issued a recall of Nerada Organics Lemon & Ginger Herbal Infusion 60g (40 tea cup bags) with Best Before dates from 08/01/23 up to and including 22/01/23.
Nerada responded immediately following advice that ginger sourced from our offshore supplier had been compromised with traces of ethylene oxide.
The compromised stock was quickly isolated, and all retailers and supermarkets were advised to remove identified batches from their shelves and warehouses, with the matter immediately referred to Food Standards Australia for further investigation. No other Nerada products were impacted.
Nerada would like to assure all customers that the levels of ethylene oxide at 8.8 micrograms per teabag are exceptionally low and unlikely to present a health risk. This is an isolated incident and the chemical was found only in this particular batch of ginger. No other supplies have been compromised both prior and subsequent to this batch. Food Standards Australia and New Zealand have updated information noting:
“Health effects associated with ethylene oxide exposure are highly unlikely outside of specialised workplaces that use ethylene oxide gas. Prior to 2003, ethylene oxide was a permitted pesticide treatment for herbs and spices sold in Australia, with residue limits (maximum of 20 mg/kg) defined in the Food Standards Code.” Read the full statement here.
This is the only recall of this nature ever issued by Nerada in its 50-year history.
We pride ourselves on the quality of the organic herbal infusions that we produce, and this incident is not representative of the rigorous standards we have in place. We acknowledge the concerns this has raised with our customers and have commenced discussions with our ginger supplier to further investigate how this incident occurred.
This is an isolated incident that was detected quickly. We thank our dedicated customers for their understanding as we work to rectify this matter.
WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
What do you do if you have bought the Lemon and Ginger Organic Herbal Infusion?
The first thing to check is the best before date on your packaging. This isolated incident refers to only the Lemon and Ginger product (40 tea cup bags) with Best Before dates from 08/01/23 up to and including 22/01/23.
If the Best Before date falls within this range, please return the product to the place of purchase for a full refund.
What other products are impacted?
No other Nerada Tea or Nerada Organic Infusion products have been impacted by this recall.
Why is the ginger sourced from overseas?
We pride ourselves on selecting Australian ingredients where possible. Our black tea is 100% Australian grown, but many of the herbal ingredients are not available locally. To date we have not been able to find an organic ginger provider domestically that can cut and mill the ginger down to the size we need for our tea bag products. Therefore, we source our ginger internationally, using a supplier that meets Australian and European Standards and organic regulations.
How did the contamination occur?
Our supplier is still working with the grower to investigate how the product entered the supply chain. We will keep this statement updated with the latest information once it comes to hand.
How can we be sure it was only this batch impacted?
We take the quality of our products very seriously. We are waiting for a detailed report on how this entered the supply chain.
Our supplier assures us that only this batch was compromised. Therefore, no prior stock has been compromised and subsequent stock is rigorously monitored.
Our Nerada organic black teas are all sourced from our 360-hectare single origin estate in Far North Queensland and grown pesticide free.
I’ve taken the Lemon and Ginger teabags out of the box packaging and have no idea of the Best Before Date. What do I do?
Although the levels of contaminant are extremely low, we suggest that you err on the side of caution and dispose of the tea. As this means that you won’t be able to be reimbursed at the supermarket, please send your details to firstname.lastname@example.org and advise what quantity was purchased and the store of purchase and we will issue a Coles or Woolworths voucher for the value of your purchase.
What do I do if I am not feeling well?
The levels of ethylene oxide at 8.8 micrograms per teabag is unlikely to present a health risk. However, if you have any concerns you should seek medical advice. Please contact Queensland Health on 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84) or see your General Practitioner.
LATEST UPDATE: 24 February 2021