A woman on TikTok showed what she says is mold in the process of making Kraft Mac and Cheese. Her claims went viral, being viewed over 1.2 million times, and Kraft Heinz has since responded to deny the claims.
Reading from a Facebook post created by a man named Trent Rose, TikTok user Stacee Marie (@thewandfairy) details the claims made in his post, saying that the facility does not have proper cleaning practices.
“Yaw wanna know the truth about the pasta that is being produced at Kraft Heinz. We clean our mixers out every 19 days, what is presented in the pic is what our mixture of dough looks like after 5 days,” the Facebook post reads. “The dough that’s doesn’t get released into the dies get stuck on our wall mixers, and turns into mold from condensation.”
The video then shows what the user claims is the inside of a Kraft Heinz mixer.
“Just look at it for a minute. Like, really look at it,” Stacee Marie, who has over 10,000 followers, says. “There are multiple types of mold growing. If you know anything about mycology, this is horrifying.”
A Kraft Heinz spokesperson told the Daily Dot the claims “are not true” and that “the photo shared is of a mixer machine that was broken and not in use.”
“After the mixer was fixed and access was regained, it was thoroughly cleaned and purged of any old ingredients. Our equipment is always extensively cleaned and flushed before food production resumes. We follow the highest of standards for cleanliness and safety at our plants and participate in regular and rigorous inspections to ensure all protocols are followed,” the spokesperson said.
The Daily Dot could not find Rose’s post on Facebook.
Stacee Marie eventually made a follow-up video claiming that she verified the information as best she could in the Facebook comments section. She also shared some other videos that purport to show issues with Kraft Mac and Cheese.
And while some of the problems in these videos she highlighted in her follow-up could be caused by issues with the manufacturer, there’s also a chance that other issues could have presented themselves after the consumer already bought the product.
For example, some of the stitched videos show bugs in the dry pasta. As many users noted, bugs can enter dry goods at any point in the production and consumption process, including in one’s home.
“To the defense of whoever you can get cabinet bugs, especially in pasta and rice,” said a user.
“The little bugs are weevils and can happen any where from manufacturing to shipping or storage,” echoed another.
Still, Stacee Marie’s video was viewed a whopping 1.2 million times and she says that she is concerned.
“Go read the comments on that video,” she states. “Lots of people have been getting sick from Kraft for a long time. Now we know why.”
The Daily Dot reached out to Stacee Marie via email.
Update 7:45am CT Jan. 18: In an email to the Daily Dot, Stacee Marie shared her thoughts on what was alleged in the video.
“I feel that big corporations like Kraft buy off these safety inspection organizations because they just want to line their pockets,” she wrote. “They do not care about us. They would sell us re-imagined dog poop if we’d give them our money for it.”
“That’s what my whole page is about,” she continued. “We need to start harvesting our own food and butchering our own animals. Otherwise there’s no guarantee what we are consuming. It’s bad enough they inject our livestock with hormones and toxins. Now they’re just feeding us waste. It’s disgusting. They should all be shut down. There’s a reason they are illegal overseas.”
For context, Kraft Mac and Cheese is not banned in the European Union. That said, products sold in the EU containing Yellow 5 and 6 dyes are required to have a warning label indicating the possible dangers associated with the dyes.
In 2017, another study found that many boxed mac and cheese products contained phthalates, which are “man-made substances that have been shown to interfere with human hormones,” per Linda Carroll writing for Today.
That said, Carroll also notes that “the report wasn’t published in a peer-reviewed journal and it doesn’t specify how the levels found in mac and cheese compare with what has been reported to be a problem in scientific articles.” Additionally, “The FDA says it’s unclear what effect, if any, phthalates have on people.”
Regardless, Stacee Marie reiterated her belief that the food contained harmful ingredients.
“Kraft should be honest about the carcinogenic toxins in all of their food,” the TikToker alleged. “They should stop paying CEOs billions of dollars in salary and actual focus on quality ingredients and INTEGRITY. This is why cancer is rampant. They’re poisoning us from all angles.”