Ikea recalls cakes in 23 countries after sewage bacteria found
Ikea has recalled thousands of cakes from its stores in 23 countries after Chinese authorities identified high levels of bacteria normally found in human and animal waste.The furniture giant admitted on Tuesday that coliform bacteria had been found in two batches of almond cake from a supplier in Sweden.
It comes after Chinese customs officials announced that they had destroyed a batch of 1,800 cakes after finding it contained high levels of coliforms which failed to meet hygiene standards.
Coliforms, common bacteria which are found in faeces as well as soil and water, do not normally cause serious illness but are a sign of contamination which can indicate the presence of more harmful bacteria such as E.coli.
It comes after Ikea recalled meatballs and sausages from 24 countries due to fears they could have been contaminated with horse meat.
Ikea said batches of the cakes sold in all countries had been tested, but no evidence of contamination was found in those sold in the UK and Ireland.
The affected batches of almond cake with chocolate and butterscotch all came from the same Swedish supplier which exports to stores across the world, the retailer said.
A spokesman said: "There is no health risk associated with consuming this product. The production batches have, as per safety and quality routines, been tested for bacteria that can cause health issues, such as E.coli, and none of these pathogen bacteria have been found.
"However, since the product does not comply with our strict food quality standards we have decided to withdraw the concerned production batches from sale in the 23 affected countries. The UK and Ireland are not affected."
The 23 countries in which almond cake was withdrawn were: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan and the United Arab Emirates.