Meal Delivery Service Figures Out What Sickened Hundreds

It was tara flour that led to GI, liver problems
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 20, 2022 1:06 AM CDT
Meal Delivery Service Identifies Ingredient That Sickened Hundreds
Stock photo of a tara plant.   (Getty Images / Mirwanto Muda)

Hundreds of people got sick after eating a lentil-based meal from vegan meal delivery service Daily Harvest, and the company says it has now figured out the culprit: tara flour. The ingredient, made from the seeds of the tara tree that grows in South America and used as a plant-based protein source, is only used in one of the company's meals, the French Lentil & Leek Crumbles that made people sick, and it is from a supplier who does not provide any other ingredients for any of the company's other meals, NBC News reports. Daily Harvest says in a statement that it has stopped sourcing from that producer entirely, Bloomberg reports.

The meal company had already initiated a voluntary recall of the product. As of July 14, 277 people had reported illnesses, with 96 of those hospitalizations, related to the meal. Gastrointestinal illness, liver problems, and even gallbladder removal were among the issues reported; some customers are suing the company, including one lawsuit filed on behalf of two children, one of them a breastfeeding infant. "Our investigation team will continue working with the FDA, the tara flour producer and others to help determine what specifically made people sick," Daily Harvest says. (Read more food poisoning stories.)

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