Health Canada has issued a recall for Paqui brand “One Chip Challenge” snacks due to reported “adverse reactions.”
The health agency says the recall was triggered by the company that makes the snack, Amplify Snack Brands Inc., after several reports of consumers becoming sick when eating them.
The recall comes after the death of a teen in Massachussetts. An autopsy is pending, but the 14-year-old’s parents are blaming the challenge for his Sept. 1 death.
A spokesperson for Texas-based Paqui says the One Chip Challenge is sold “in very limited distribution in Canada.”
The recalled “One Chip Challenge” is a spicy snack made from Carolina Reaper and Naga Viper peppers that has taken social media by storm. Participants in the challenge eat the chip and then see how long they can go without drinking water or eating other food afterward.
The company’s website describes the snack as “intended for adults only, with clear and prominent labelling highlighting the chip is not for children or anyone sensitive to spicy foods or who has food allergies, is pregnant or has underlying health conditions.”
The Paqui spokesperson says the company is “deeply saddened” and expresses its condolences to Harris Wolobah’s family.
“We have seen an increase in teens and other individuals not heeding these warnings. As a result, while the product continues to adhere to food safety standards, out of an abundance of caution, we are actively working with our retailers to remove the product from shelves,” Paqui said in a statement posted to the company’s website.
The company is also offering refunds to people who have purchased the product.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency says it’s conducting a food safety investigation and may recall other products as well.
The Canadian Press asked the food inspection agency which Canadian stores carry the chip, but a spokesperson said the agency was unable to provide that information as of Friday evening.
“Food safety investigations are complex and involve several essential steps to determine if a food recall is required and what specific products to recall. When dealing with potentially unsafe food, the CFIA acts as quickly as possible to collect information and make decisions,” the CFIA said in an email.
— With files from The Associated Press and The Canadian Press