The Auckland importers of food products who failed to translate food allergen declarations into English, have been fined a total of $28,000.
In the Auckland District Court, Tokyo Food Company Limited was sentenced on two charges under the Food Act it pleaded guilty to and Japan Mart 2014 Company Limited was sentenced on one charge under the Food Act it pleaded guilty to, following a successful prosecution by New Zealand Food Safety compliance investigators.
Tokyo Food Company Limited was fined $21,000 and Japan Mart 2014 Company Limited was fined $7,000.
“Tokyo Food Company Limited and Japan Mart 2014 Company Limited are New Zealand registered companies and we’d expect them to have known they needed to declare on the labelling that the product contained soy sauce or fish products, in English, so that people who suffer from allergies are aware,” says New Zealand Food Safety Deputy Director-General Vincent Arbuckle.
Food Safety Compliance Officers found through studying records that between 9 January 2020 and 26 October 2021, Tokyo Food imported and sold Seasoned Seaweed Salad, also known as Goma Wakame, to a range of well-known supermarket businesses. The labels supplied with their 1kg and 300g packages did not comply with the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code because they did not declare the allergen soy being present. Between 21 and 26 October two consumer recalls of the product were done.
In total, 32,796 1kg packages of Seasoned Seaweed Salad were sold and 7,752 packages of 300g Nobu brand Seasoned Seaweed Salad were sold.