Category Archives: chobani

Moldy Chobani yogurt more harmful than previously assumed

iStock_000026032451SmallLast September there was a nationwide recall of Chobani Greek yogurt due to what the company called a harmless problem with some fungus.

Ten months later, that recall has been linked to more than 400 illnesses and microbiologists say the fungus responsible for the outbreak isn’t as harmless as company officials indicated.

Experts with Duke University tested yogurt affected by the September 2013 recall taken from the refrigerator of a Texas couple who said they both became ill after eating it.

The scientists found that the sample contained Mucor circinelloides, the fungus detected at the Twin Falls, Idaho, plant where the yogurt was made. But additional testing revealed that it was a subspecies of the bug that is commonly associated with human infections.

“The potential risk would be higher than we might have thought,” said Soo Chan Lee, a senior research associate with the Duke Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology. The study is published in the journal mBio.

That contradicts the position of experts cited by Chobani who said the mold is “not considered a disease-causing microorganism,” and might pose risk only to people with compromised immune systems.

But Dr. Alejandro Mazzotta, Chobani’s vice president of global quality, food safety and regulatory affairs, disputed the study findings.

“To our knowledge, there is no evidence, including the assertions presented in this publication, that the strain in the recalled products causes illness in consumers when ingested,” he said in a statement. Chobani officials say they’ve made significant investments in technology and personnel to improve food safety procedures.

At least 403 reports of illness tied to the recall were reported in the past year, Food and Drug Administration officials said Monday. Reports aren’t confirmed cases, the FDA noted.

Chobani has taken steps to eradicate the mold at the plant, FDA officials said.

FoodFacts.com wants everyone in our community to understand that, despite claims by any company, recalls are serious business. While Chobani is claiming that the mold that caused the recall of their yogurt really couldn’t harm anyone, other sources disagree pretty strongly. It’s important for us all to keep up with food recalls and to make sure we rid our refrigerators and pantries of items that appear on lists of recalled products. While it may not be something we think of often, it really should be. We can avoid unnecessary — and sometimes serious — illness by following recall news. And remember, this is a service you can access easily via the FoodFacts.com website right here: http://www.foodfacts.com/food-recalls/ Develop a valuable habit and check it out as often as you can!

http://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/moldy-chobani-yogurt-posed-health-threat-tests-find-n150116

Lawsuit against Chobani claims it’s not really Greek yogurt and is misleading consumers about nutrition

Chobani_AP2Lawsuits against food manufacturers have been in the news constantly over the last few years. Manufacturers have removed “All Natural” claims from their labels more than a few times because of disgruntled consumers discovering that those claims really weren’t the truth. FoodFacts.com has always felt that the voices of consumers do eventually motivate postive changes in the food industry. And those lawsuits certainly have been motivational for many manufacturers. The latest lawsuit we’ve been reading about is something we want to call to your attention because it may stir up some different feelings.

According to the New York Post, Barry Stoltz and Allan Chang are suing Chobani, alleging that the companies falsely represent their product by hiding the amount of sugar in their yogurt and by calling it “Greek.” Chobani Greek Yogurt is about as nutritious as eating a fudge ice cream bar,the lawsuit claims.

The 48-page suit, which accuses the best-selling brand of deceiving consumers about its health benefits, sounds more like a Jerry Seinfeld routine.

But its irony is unintentional.

“There is nothing ‘Greek’ about the products,” the complaint says. “None of the products sold in the U.S. are made in Greece or made by Greek nationals.”

“The name of the brand itself is not Greek,” noting that it is derived from the Turkish word “chobani,” which means shepherd, and the company’s founder is Turkish.

The suit contends Chobani products contain about 16 grams of sugar, virtually the same sweetness as a Nestlé Fudge ice cream bar.

Chobani allegedly creates further confusion for consumers by prominently displaying a “0%” on the label “without providing any context as to what the 0% represents,” the suit alleges.

The plaintiffs — Barry Stoltz of Scarsdale and Allan Chang of Queens — filed the class-action suit in Brooklyn Federal Court and are seeking unspecified monetary damages for apparently being tricked into thinking that 0%, which actually means it’s nonfat, refers to zero calories or sugar.

“With deceptive packaging and marketing, consumers are deceived into thinking that junk food can be a healthy alternative,” said lawyer C.K. Lee of Manhattan, who filed the suit.

Chobani, based in upstate Norwich, said a similar lawsuit had been tossed in California. The company said it is “committed to using only natural ingredients.”

It also schooled Stoltz and Chang on where Chobani is made.

“Much like English muffins and French fries, our fans understand Greek yogurt to be a product description about how we authentically make our yogurt and not about where we make our yogurt in upstate New York and Idaho,” the company said in a statement.

FoodFacts.com was thrilled to see Subway move to eliminate azodicarbonamide from its breads and rolls because consumers made their voices heard. We were equally happy about Gatorade removing brominated vegetable oil from their products that previously contained the controversial ingredient. We applauded Kashi removing the “all natural” claims from their products because of a lawsuit. It is certainly true that consumers would feel misled by claims that are obviously untrue.

Have to admit though, that none of us here at FoodFacts.com ever considered the possibility that ANY of the mainstream brands of Greek yogurt are actually manufactured in Greece by Greek nationals — unless of course we’re talking about imported products, which we’re not. We’re pretty positive that the overwhelming majority of consumers understand that what we’re talking about are products manufactured in the Greek style of yogurt preparation.

As far as the sugar content is concerned, we have to be honest here, 16 grams (while certainly higher than we’d like) is actually right in the ballpark for most mainstream brands. If you’ve been reading nutrition labels for yogurts, you probably know this already.

We’ve posted about this lawsuit for your consideration. Is this a reasonable claim?

FoodFacts.com would really like for consumers to use careful consideration before filing any lawsuit against food manufacturers. Please don’t get us wrong, legal claims are a great tool to change what is actually wrong with how food manufacturers market products. We just want to make sure they’re used to do just that. We’re really not so sure this particular lawsuit fits that bill. What do you think?

http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2014/06/24/greek-yogurt-giants-chobani-and-fage-facing-lawsuits-over-sugar-and-greekness/
http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/chobani-yogurt-greek-deceives-customers-lawsuit-article-1.1836844

Greek Yogurt. Which is your favorite??

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Foodfacts.com has noticed that a great number of followers favor Greek yogurts. These strained, often low-fat, high protein products are found to be the healthier options in comparison to the common yogurts which still contain whey. Also, people seem to find them very flavorful with less sugars.

We recently viewed a report which discussed the rising sales of Greek-style yogurt in the United States. Within the past five years Greek yogurt sales have climbed from $60 million a year to $1.5 billion, a 2500% sales growth in just half a decade. When many ponder the large increase, most people believe it’s due to rising health concerns within the US.

We have compiled 5 of the largest selling non-fat Greek yogurt brands. Based on total calories, sugar, protein, and controversial ingredients; try to decide which yogurt you would choose!

chobani-greek-yogurt1
Chobani’s non-fat pomegranate Greek yogurt contains 140 total calories. The sodium content for 1 serving is 75mg, or 3% the daily value. This product also contains 19 grams of sugar, and 14 grams of protein, which is a decent amount. Controversial ingredients listed on the nutrition panel are natural flavors.

yoplait-greek-yogurt

Yoplait’s Blueberry non-fat Greek Yogurt contains 130 total calories, and 95mg of sodium, which is slightly higher than the Chobani product. Also listed, 18 grams of sugar and 12 grams of protein. Sugar is slightly lower, which some may prefer, and the amount of protein is still a good amount for just 6 ounces. However, this yogurt contains two controversial ingredients; natural flavors and kosher gelatin.

dannon-yogurt1
Dannon’s non-fat Strawberry Greek yogurt contains 120 total calories. Sodium is decently low at with only 55mg, or 2% the daily value. This product contains 16 grams of sugar, and 12 grams of protein. The sugar in this products is the lowest among the other 4 choices, and the protein is still in a good range. The common controversial ingredient in this Greek yogurt is natural flavors.

fage-yogurt1
Fage’s Greek Strained, Total 0%, Nonfat Yogurt with Honey contains 160 total calories. Some may feel this is too high for a Greek yogurt, because a large amount of other options are slightly lower. This products also contains 50mg of sodium, which is very low. However total grams of sugar is about 29. A plus, this product contains no added sugars, just honey. However, everyone has different preferences. This product is 11 grams of protein, in just 5.3 ounces, which is a good amount. Bonus, there are zero controversial ingredients.

oikos-yogurt
Stonyfield’s Organic Oikos Nonfat Greek, Vanilla Yogurt contains 160 total calories. It also lists 90mg of sodium, which isn’t bad, but it is among the highest of some yogurts. The added organic sugars in this product help to round out 17 total grams, and provides 22 grams of protein per serving, which is 8 ounces. Like many others, this product contains a controversial ingredient in the form of organic natural vanilla flavor.

Which Greek yogurt would you choose???