Pudding wasn't all that went pop at the Jell-O manufacturing plant. A malfunctioning machine deposited metal fragments in chocolate pudding packages bound for Utah and 12 other Western states, and the manufacturer issued a recall of the product on Friday.
Albertson's stores throughout Utah began pulling the affected chocolate Jell-O Pudding Mix from store shelves Saturday morning. "We got the call early Saturday morning from the division office, and they said do it immediately," said one Albertson's employee.But some Smith's employees still hadn't gotten word late Saturday and didn't know anything about the recall. "I'll go look and see if we've got those lot numbers, and of course we'll pull them off," said an employee at a Smith's store in Salt Lake City, who learned about the problem from a worried customer.
At a Smith's store in Sandy, employees pulled the smaller-size packages from store shelves, but not the larger packages - which have also been contaminated with metal fragments and were subject to the recall. "I don't know why," an employee there said.
General Foods USA announced it was recalling specifically coded boxes of chocolate Jell-O Cook 'n' Serve Pudding and Pie Filling and chocolate Jell-O Instant Pudding and Pie Filling, in both 51/8- and 31/2-ounce sizes.
The tainted boxes have an embossed code on the side of the box that starts with the numbers 1032 through 1039, followed by the letter S, which precedes other letters or numbers, said a spokeswoman for the manufacturer.The recall was issued after the metal fragments from a defective chocolate pudding machine part were found in some packages, the spokeswoman said.
The affected pudding mix was distributed in 13 states: Texas, Arizona, California, Alaska, Nevada, New Mexico, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Utah, Montana and Idaho.
The product could have been purchased on or after Feb. 1, the spokeswoman said.
Pudding boxes bearing the aforementioned codes should be returned to the store where they were purchased, or to the manufacturer's General Foods USA Consumer Response Center, 250 North St., White Plains, N.Y. 10625.
Affected customers may also call the manufacturer's consumer response line at 1-800-431-1001.