Kraft Foods has recalled an estimated 242,000 boxes of its macaroni-and-cheese dinner product because some of the boxes may contain bits of metal, the company announced Tuesday in a statement. The specific boxes recalled were 7.25-ounce containers with “Best When Used By” dates ranging from Sept. 18 through Oct. 11, and the code C2 stamped directly below that date. They have been sold individually and in packages of three, four and five boxes, in the United States and Puerto Rico as well as in the Caribbean and some South American countries.
"We believe a piece of stainless steel got wedged in a metal piece of equipment, which may have generated friction that resulted in small pieces of metal potentially falling into the product," a Kraft spokeswoman said in a statement.
The company said eight customers had reported problems with “the impacted line” of mac-and-cheese dinners, although it said no injuries had been reported. It recommended consumers who bought potentially tainted packages not cook and eat the macaroni but instead return boxes to the store for refunds or exchanges.
This is not the first time bits of metal have appeared in Kraft macaroni-and-cheese products. In September 2011, Kraft recalled about 137,000 cases of single-servings of Velveeta Shells & Cheese because of the possibility of the presence of wire bristle pieces, Reuters reported.
In the past year, Kraft has recalled products including single slices of American cheese (August), hot dogs (April) and cottage cheese (May). Reasons ranged from erroneous product labels -- some of the hot dogs may actually have been cheese dogs, the company said -- to improper storage temperatures before the products were sold that could increase the risk of illness.
In a tweet Tuesday, the company downplayed the recall slightly, saying it was recalling “approximately 200,000 cases.” Kraft Foods Group is a conglomerate that owns popular food brands including Oscar Mayer, Philadelphia and Capri Sun. Its annual revenue exceeds $18 billion, according to the company.