Checking the label is the best way to find out what is in the product or what it may have come in contact with. Reading every label every time is an essential part of living with food allergies. I admit, sometimes I slack off and don't read the label, especially when I'm short on time. I tend to just grab the box off the shelf and throw it in the cart. I know that my husband is going to double check after me but still - it's no excuse.
Today while I was grocery shopping I put two small cans of Fry's Cocoa Powder in the cart without looking twice. I knew that the big cans of Fry's Cocoa have an allergy warning on the label with regards to milk, eggs and nuts. However, the small cans are manufactured in a different facility. I had confirmed it by calling the company and was told that it is manufactured in a different facility that does not process dairy, eggs or nuts. But (and you know there's a but) that was last year. This year it looks like Fry's may have changed facilities. I called the manufacturer today. Currently, some of their small cans, just like the big cans, have an allergy warning on them. I saw it at the grocery store today. It clearly states on the label: MAY CONTAIN MILK. Some of the small containers are manufactured in a facility that does not process milk, eggs or nuts. But some are manufactured in a facility that processes those allergens. Therefore, it is essential to read the label of every can you pick up while grocery shopping as there is no way to know which batch/facility that particular can came from. Despite my disappointment, I have to give the manufacturer credit for labeling. They have done their part; it is my responsibility to read the label every time.
Needless to say, I returned the Fry's Cocoa Powder containers back to the shelf and picked up a different brand - one that is not potentially cross contaminated with dairy, eggs or nuts.
Lesson learned: READ EVERY LABEL EVERY TIME.