Tuesday, July 16, 2024

NBC NY: Peanuts, eggs in cookies not declared

The untimely death of 25-year-old Órla Baxendale, a talented dancer from the UK who had moved to New York City to pursue her dreams, has caused shockwaves across the globe. Tragically, she passed away on January 11 due to anaphylactic shock caused by a severe allergic reaction to a cookie manufactured by Cookies United and sold by Stew Leonard’s, a popular supermarket chain in Connecticut.

The cookie in question contained peanuts that were not listed in the ingredients, leading to a recall of the product. Additionally, it was revealed by Connecticut state officials that the product also contained undisclosed eggs, making the situation even more dire.

In the wake of this devastating incident, the global dance community has mourned the loss of Baxendale, who was described as a radiant and brave soul by her family. The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, where Baxendale was an alumna, also expressed deep sadness at the loss of an integral part of the New York dance world.

Stew Leonard’s, following the revelation of the undisclosed ingredients, expanded its recall to include both chocolate and vanilla Florentine Cookies. These cookies were sold from November 6 to December 31 and had a best by date of January 5. The company’s president and CEO, Stew Leonard Jr., confirmed that the chief safety officer was never notified that the cookies contained peanuts.

The Ailey School, where Baxendale was a scholarship student, also paid tribute to her, highlighting her boundless talent and joyful spirit. Her passing will be profoundly felt by her friends, colleagues, and all who knew her.

The profound impact of Órla Baxendale’s death serves as a painful reminder of the importance of accurate food labeling and the potentially fatal consequences of undisclosed allergens. Our thoughts go out to Baxendale’s family and the global dance community as they continue to grieve this extraordinary individual.

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