Allergy sufferers are calling on Aldi to change confusing labelling on its chocolates after a Melbourne woman ended up in intensive care this Easter.
The German-owned supermarket sells its own brand of ‘Dairy Fine’ chocolates, as well as some dairy-free chocolate products.
Nursing student Kayley Drummond wrote on Facebook over the weekend that she had suffered a severe allergic reaction after mistaking the Dairy Fine chocolates for the dairy free ones at Aldi.
I’m currently in hospital and was admitted overnight after an anaphylactic reaction from accidentally misreading the packaging on this chocolate. Be careful everyone else,” Ms Drummond wrote on Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia’s Facebook page.
Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia spokeswoman Maria Said told nine.com.au the labelling on Aldi’s products was confusing and the issue came up time and time again.
The words ‘Dairy Fine’ on the Aldi brand chocolate was written in a yellow, cursive script, making it hard to decipher and more easily confused with the dairy-free options, Maria Said added.
I think if it was in a bold font and a bold colour it would be a different story. I saw it certainly as an accident waiting to happen and now we have had a lady that has ended up in intensive care as a result of the product and of making the mistake herself.
Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia had alerted Aldi to the confusion after Easter last year, when other members reported making the same mistake.
“I had a conversation with Aldi and I was told that it’s their brand and they get their chocolate from Germany and it’s labelled according to legislation,” Ms Said said.
The situation could be compared to the tragic case of nine-year-old Melbourne schoolgirl Isabel Marraro who died last year after eating a chocolate chip cookie, she said.
“The product that Isabel ate was correctly labelled, but was confusing. Sure, we tell people to read the ingredient label every time they purchase a product but in reality it is hard to do that for every single product with every single purchase of food.
“This needs to be taken on board by Aldi and they need to have a discussion about what they can do to help prevent this from happening, and not let a fatality be the catalyst for change,” she said.
A spokesperson for Aldi said the supermarket was yet to be contacted by Ms Hammond. If contacted, Aldi would be required to report the issue to the Food Safety Authority.