Friday, June 19, 2009

What I Don't Get About the Toll House Cookie Dough Recall and What The Onion Needs to do About it

(hattip amicus bloggus Danny)

Recalls happen a lot. Let's just take the first five recalled products from June 2009 (since it is the current month and all) as an example. Here is the list from the Consumer Product Safety Division:
  • SmartSpark Energy Systems Recalls Battery Equalizers Due to Fire Hazard
  • Body Boards Recalled by JGR Copa Due to Violation of Lead Paint Standard
  • Children’s Necklace and Bracelet Sets Recalled by D&D Distributing-Wholesale Due To Choking Hazard
  • Macy’s Recalls Children’s Hooded Sweatshirts Due to Strangulation Hazard
  • Campbell Hausfeld Recalls Air Compressors Due to Fire Hazard
In each of these examples, the company that designed the product did something mistaken or negligent to cause the product to be faulty and dangerous. That is why they have to recall the products. The company made a mistake.

Not so with Toll House who is recalling their cookie dough because some people have gotten E. coli poisoning from eating it raw. In other words, Toll House didn't really do anything negligent to make their product dangerous (if you cook it, it's fine to eat), but people are using it incorrectly, by eating it raw.

Well, you argue, they should recall the packages to tell you not to eat it raw then. Right?
The Toll House products do have warnings on their packaging about the dangers of raw dough.
Oh. Well then.

I expect The Onion to run a "God Recalls Human Beings Due to Raw Cookie Dough Eating Malfunction" immediately. It really is the only sane course of action here.

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