I sent an e-mail to WhiteWave Food the company that distributes Silk Soymilk. I also made a phone call. Below is the e-mail response.
Thank you for your recent e-mail to Silk®. We appreciate your interest in our products.
We can assure you that we take allergenic food concerns seriously, and have instituted allergen control programs at each facility manufacturing the Silk Pure Almond and Soymilk products. Our allergen control programs consist of several components, designed to comprehensively address allergenic food concerns at multiple points of production. Examples of this program include the following:
· Supplier control – each ingredient used in production goes through steps to ensure quality and purity.
· Cleaning procedures – validated procedures to ensure effective clean and rinse is accomplished after each production run.
· Allergen-free product testing – testing in-process and finished product at frequent intervals to ensure safety.
· Storage/warehouse – allergen status labeling and isolation of ingredients to ensure no cross-contamination occurs.
· Production scheduling - scheduling of product runs are done in a manner that ensures allergen-containing products are run only after non-allergen containing products, protecting the immediate subsequent product from contamination risk.
Food safety is our highest priority and as part of our commitment to quality, all employees involved in the manufacturing of Silk have a comprehensive awareness of food allergen concerns.
Please contact us if you have any additional concerns or questions.
Thanks again for contacting the Consumer Affairs Department.
In the phone conversation that I had with the company, the representative also said to me that her company is aware that many of their customers have other food allergies besides dairy and take that very seriously. I was happy to hear her say that. I made me feel like I was listened to. So many people don't believe food allergies even exist. For her to say we know that's why you drink our product is because you trust us, made me feel confident they are doing the best they can.
So my conclusion is that they take food allergies seriously. They need to put that it may contain almond or coconut because there is a chance that it could be on the equipment even though they practice good cleaning procedures. I conclude that at least I know they are doing their best to keep cross contaminations from happening and that is lot more than I can say for other companies. It's as risky as consuming anything when you have food allergies, but at least I know. I honestly worry more about companies that don't have statements at all on products.
Let me also remind you this is a lesson to re-read labels even on products you use regularly. Our daughter has been drinking Silk Soymilk for 2 years and this new allergy statement just appeared on our carton in the last week here in Wisconsin.