Important Poppy Seed Update for Consumers
On 15 November 2022, Foods Standards Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) issued a health warning on non-food grade poppy seeds that have incorrectly entered the food supply chain from September 2022 and a national food recall is currently underway to remove the affected products.
The brands which have been recalled so far are commercially available brands such as Hoyts, Gaganis, Eumarrah, mostly found in supermarkets. For a full list of the poppy seeds recalled see this FSANZ LINK for the brands and batch numbers currently affected.
The reports confirm that the recalled seeds are not safe and not intended for human consumption. Severe toxicity has resulted from consumers ingesting large volumes and concentrated forms of raw poppy seeds (such as when brewed as a tea). The problem is due to people consuming reasonably large doses of poppy seeds (between 120g-1kg) and being poisoned by high levels of the naturally occurring chemical thebaine in poppy seeds. Interestingly, toxic effects have not been reported when poppy seeds have been consumed in smaller quantities for example in baked goods.
Santos Organics would like to reassure our customers that we source “Bakers Gold” poppy seeds processed by Sun Pharmaceuticals Industries in Tasmania and we have been advised by our supplier that these poppy seeds are NOT affected by the recall and are safe to consume.
We have been further advised that Sun Pharmaceuticals Australia is cooperating with the health authorities as they work to understand the situation as it develops. They continuously test all the batches of poppy seeds that they produce to ensure that they are safe for human consumption in culinary usage. We will keep you informed of any developments.