Global chocolate maker Barry Callebaut has announced that the cleanup of chocolate lines affected by the recent entry of salmonella-positive lecithin at its factory in Wieze, Belgium is progressing well. As a result, the first cleaned chocolate lines are expected to restart production from early August 2022, with a gradual ramp-up to full capacity over the following weeks.
On Monday, June 27, Barry Callebaut detected a Salmonella positive production batch at a facility in Wieze, Belgium. The company’s food safety programs enabled it to quickly identify lecithin as a source of contamination, an ingredient widely used in chocolate production. In response, Barry Callebaut halted all chocolate production at the Wieze factory on June 29, 2022, as a precautionary measure, which prevented affected chocolate products from entering the retail food chain. Barry Callebaut has duly and proactively informed the Belgian food safety authorities (FAVV) and is in continuous collaboration with them on this incident.
After contacting all customers supplied with the affected chocolate products, Barry Callebaut has confirmed, based on its internal investigation, that no chocolate products affected by the salmonella-positive production batch from Wieze, Belgium, entered in the retail food chain. The company informed the Belgian food safety authorities (FAVV) of the incident, shut down all chocolate production lines as a precaution and suspended all products produced from the time of testing.