Daily Harvest meal delivery service recalls lentil chunks after customers report gastrointestinal emergency

A popular meal delivery service has withdrawn a lentil-based food product after customers posted online about gastrointestinal issues they suffered after eating a French Lentil + Leek Crumbles meal. Daily Harvest, the trendy brand selling products, is known for its impressive sponsorships and is comparable to services like Blue Apron and Hello Fresh.

Posted by Daily Harvest on Sunday recall statement on its website. NBC News sent an email to the Daily Harvest on Friday to a customer asking them to throw away the lentils “very carefully” and offering a $10 credit for each bag of produce purchased.

“A small number of customers have reported gastrointestinal discomfort after consuming our French Lentil + Leek Crumbles,” the Daily Harvest email says. “As covered in our cooking instructions, lentils should be thoroughly cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F.”

Daily Harvest wrote in its recall statement that it “initiated an investigation with internal and external experts in our supply chain and in accordance with regulatory procedures.”

Daily Harvest customers have posted on social media about being hospitalized and experiencing severe abdominal pain. One customer, Luke Tashi, who shared his recall email from Daily Harvest, said in an email that he does not believe the company is taking a serious or quick approach to the situation. Tashi, who wrote that he had “extreme liver pain” and was hospitalized after consuming the product, said he worried about long-term liver damage.

“The surgeons I consulted with were so shocked that they seriously considered removing my gallbladder,” Tashi wrote.

Mayo Clinic communications director Liza Torborg, wrote in 2018 That the protein in raw lentils that can cause negative health effects would have to be eaten in large amounts outside of the normal diet for it to be a concern. She also wrote that the protein, lectin, breaks down when processed and cooked.

Dozens of customer evidence similar to Tashi have been posted on the Daily Harvest Reddit page and in Instagram comments on the account of Daily Harvest, which has more than 600,000 followers and was responding to customer complaints about the product as early as June 15. The company did not do this. Respond to requests for comment about the timeline of its official response.