If You Have These Ice Cream Flavors in Your Freezer, Get Rid of Them, FDA Warns

Eating these varieties could put your health at serious risk.

For those with a sweet tooth, ice cream is a perfect way to satisfy that after-dinner craving. True lovers of this frozen dessert will indulge even as temperatures plummet, though they might be less likely to enjoy a cone with sprinkles outside. But if you've picked up certain ice cream flavors recently, you'll want to get rid of them as soon as possible, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said in a new warning. Read on to find out which ice cream varieties are now subject to recall.

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Ice cream recalls aren't uncommon.

colorful ice cream in paper cups next to metal scoop
Shutterstock/Oleksandra Naumenko

Over the summer, you might have been peeking in your freezer for certain ice cream brands, including Belfonte and Big Olaf. On July 13, the FDA issued a recall of 1.5-quart packages of Belfonte Dairy's "Chocolate to Die For" Premium Ice Cream due to undeclared peanuts, and that same day, all flavors of Big Olaf brand ice cream products were recalled due to potential contamination with Listeria monocytogenes.

In June, the agency also issued a safety alert for Taharka Brothers Peanut Butter Cup ice cream, which was pulled due to potential Salmonella contamination.

The latest recall, however, affects more unconventional flavor varieties.

Two seasonal selections are being pulled.

paw paw gelato

On Oct. 26, Zingerman's Creamery, of Ann Arbor, Michigan, issued a recall for two of its unique flavors: Paw Paw Gelato and Harvest Pumpkin Gelato. A total of 173 pints and 50 quarts of the Paw Paw variety were recalled, as were 58 pints and 10 quarts of the Harvest Pumpkin flavor.

Both are seasonal flavors, as you may have guessed, but you might not be familiar with Paw Paw. According to USA Today, paw paw—also spelled pawpaw—has been dubbed the "Michigan banana." The tropical fruit grows on the Asimina triloba tree and is in season between late August and late November.

"Just plain by itself, it tastes like banana-peach custard," Marc Boone, owner of a pawpaw orchard in Washtenaw County, Michigan, told ABC-affiliate WXYZ, adding that it can also have tinges of melon, kiwi, and mango. The pawpaw fruit falls to the ground when it's ripe, but it isn't often found in grocery stores due to their fragility and "short shelf life," Boone told the outlet.

However, you can taste pawpaw in Zingerman's gelato—as the flavor returns every autumn—and it was actually Boone who inspired the company to introduce their unique offering, WXYZ reported. This year, though, the FDA is asking you to proceed with caution when it comes to the Zingerman's fall flavors.

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The recall was prompted due to human error.

harvest pumpkin gelato

According to the FDA announcement, the pints and quarts of Harvest Pumpkin and Paw Paw gelato "that are currently out in commerce" may contain undeclared egg, which is a known allergen.

"People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to Egg run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products," the announcement states, noting that the recall was issued after it was discovered that egg was listed on the "made in facility" allergens, but was missing from the gelato's ingredients and allergen declaration due to "human error of mislabeling."

"Earlier this year, Zingerman's Creamery made some recipe changes to our gelato bases to include egg yolk, to improve the overall quality," the company said. "All of our gelato labels were updated to reflect the egg yolk change as well. However, our seasonal flavors (Paw Paw and Harvest Pumpkin) were accidentally overlooked."

You're asked to return the ice cream if you have it.

hand opening freezer
Lolostock / Shutterstock

The ice cream had limited distribution, sent out only in Ann Arbor and Chelsea, Michigan, and sold by Zingerman's Creamery, Zingerman's Deli, Zingerman's Mail Order, Argus Farm Stop on Packard Road, and Agricole Farm Stop.

Pints of both flavors were in blue paper packaging, and quarts were in clear plastic. The Paw Paw flavor has a green flavor label, while Harvest Pumpkin has an orange sticker. If you think you might've purchased recalled gelato, look for the lot number on the nutrition label; affected lots of Paw Paw include 220916, 220928, 221005, 221012, and 22108 and affected lots of Harvest Pumpkin include 220909, 220919, and 220928.

Fortunately, no illnesses have been reported to Zingerman's Creamery, but the FDA is still urging consumers to get rid of recalled gelato. You can return both flavor varieties to Zingerman's "in exchange for a correct label." For specific recall questions, you can contact the company Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. at the number listed on the recall announcement.

Abby Reinhard
Abby Reinhard is an Associate Editor at Best Life, covering daily news and keeping readers up to date on national parks, scientific studies, and the best pet advice. Read more
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