Lidl Is Recalling Its Favorina Christmas Advent Calendars

With fewer than 180 retail stores in the U.S. as of November of this year, per ScrapeHero, compared with, say, competitor Aldi's more than 2,100, it's not as if the German-based supermarket chain Lidl is lined up to be a top supermarket player in the country. (Supermarket News reports it wasn't even among the top 50 U.S. retail grocers by revenue for 2021.) Nevertheless, Lidl has aspirations, including plans to expand its U.S. footprint, which it spent time focusing on this past year, according to Winsight Grocery Business. It also would appear that Lidl would like to position itself as the go-to retailer for "unbelievably low prices" on "fresh meats and seafood, imported cheeses, European pastries, weekly surprises, and more," as its website describes its raison d'être.

Unfortunately, however, much of the attention Lidl has received of late has not exactly been glowing. Most recently, Lidl made headlines just in time for Thanksgiving for the surprising hue of its instant mashed potatoes. Not long before that, the grocery chain's Favorina gold-wrapped chocolate bunnies were ruled a trademark infringement of Lindt's famous seasonal treat. Although the ruling was limited to Lidl's Swiss business, it was nevertheless a blow. And that wasn't the last of the bad news regarding Lidl's Favorina branded chocolate.

On December 6, Lidl recalled its Favorina Advent calendars due to concerns about Salmonella.

Lidl's Favorina-branded Advent Calendars may be contaminated with Salmonella

On December 6, the FDA announced Lidl US's recall of its 8.4-ounce Favorina Advent Calendars (Premium Chocolate With A Creamy Filling), which were sold in the U.S. between October 12 and December 5 of this year. During routine testing, Lidl discovered some of the chocolate in the calendars may be contaminated with Salmonella, a foodborne pathogen that can potentially cause serious illness, according to the CDC.

At its mildest, Salmonella infections may involve gastrointestinal issues such as stomach cramping and diarrhea. There may also be fever and, in rare cases of serious and/or prolonged illness, Salmonella may affect the blood, the urinary tract, the bones, joints, and/or nervous system. So far, there have been no reports of any such complaints. However, it can take as many as six days for symptoms to present, and occasionally, it may take several weeks. Fortunately, most people recover within a week of symptom onset, but sometimes, antibiotics are called for, such as in the case of older adults with existing medical issues and/or compromised immune system, infants, and those who present with severe illness.

Accordingly, consumers who may have purchased or been gifted one of these advent calendars are urged to check for a "BEST IF USED BY" date of 2023 and a barcode number of "4056489516965." Consumers with questions may call the Lidl Customer Care Hotline at 1-844-747-5435 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. from Monday through Saturday.