Unlisted Allergens Prompt Recall Of Over 100 Weis Ice Cream Containers

Based on an overwhelming response to a Facebook query about its customer's favorite Weis Quality Ice Cream flavor, the regional Weis Markets has quite a fan base. Especially when it comes to ice cream. With 60 or so flavors ranging from old-fashioned favorites to uncommon creations such as Teaberry and Mint Moose Tracks, the company founded by Harry and Sigmund Weis in 1912 enjoys support from devoted customers in seven states, per the company profile on Facebook. That's why a recall of its brand-name ice cream could seem particularly personal. Fortunately, the problem affects only one flavor and a relatively small number of containers.

The Market makes Weis Quality Ice Cream from milk that's processed in-house, utilizing the excess butterfat to make their creamy frozen products. With stores in Pennsylvania, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Virginia, and West Virginia, it makes a point of supporting local farmers, food pantries, and community-based healthcare organizations, and is a member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Chill program. Community accountability goes a long way, hopefully sustaining local businesses during tough times – such as the current ice cream recall due to undeclared food allergens.

What's at stake

The Weis Markets announcement, posted by the FDA on November 23, 2022, pertains to its Premium Sea Salt and Caramel Ripple Ice Cream product. Only 108 containers are affected, and the issue is mislabeling, potentially causing undeclared soy and coconut allergens to be present in the ice cream. The actual container identifies the Sea Salt Caramel Ripple flavor, but in an apparent packaging error, the lid shows Caramel Caribou Ice Cream. The company reveals that the product was potentially distributed to 197 Weis Market stores in all seven states.

No illnesses have been reported to date, but soy and coconut allergies can be life-threatening to those affected. Soy allergies, common in babies and toddlers, can cause hives, itching, eczema, trouble breathing, and swelling of the tongue or throat, according to the University of California San Francisco. It can also lead to gastrointestinal issues, dizziness, and more. Serious reactions can cause anaphylaxis, which is an emergency situation. Allergic reactions to coconut have similar symptoms, including itching and difficulty breathing, per Verywell Health.

The recalled product has a sell-by date of 11/08/2023 on the container's bottom and a UPC number of 041497-01288. It comes in a 48-ounce scround container (the term used to describe a square or rectangular container with round edges, dubbed the "King of Cartons" by Dairy Foods). Weis Customer Service can be reached by phone Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. -5 p.m. EST, by calling 1-866-999-9347.