Food is recalled when there are concerns it could be unsafe for you to eat.
This could occur if:
- the food is contaminated with a bacteria that is outside of acceptable limits, for example a product contaminated with a bacteria such as listeria
- chemical contamination
- the food contains foreign matter, such as fragments of metal or glass
- labelling errors, such as failing to list an ingredient on the label that can cause a severe allergic reaction in some people (for example nuts, milk or gluten)
- packaging defects.
How is the food recalled?
Recalls can be done by:
- removing food from retail sale in food businesses
- recovering food from distribution centres and wholesale food businesses
- recovering food already purchased by consumers.
What prompts a food recall?
A food recall may occur because of a report or complaint referred from a variety of sources:
- manufacturer, wholesaler or retailer
- government agency (for example, a local government or the Department of Health)
How do I report a possible food risk?
Contact the environmental health officer in your local government area (external site).
You can also contact the Department of Health Environmental Health Directorate on phone 9388 4999.
To view current and recent food recalls visit the Food Standards Australia New Zealand (external site).
Food Unit, Public Health
This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your healthcare professional. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional for a diagnosis and answers to their medical questions.