Oscar Mayer Short-Weighed Products Again, State Officials Say

Kraft Foods Group Inc, which owns Oscar Mayer, will have to pay fines and spend millions on making changes to their plants after they sold products in Wisconsin that didn't weigh what their packages said they weighed.

For the third time in two years, Oscar Mayer is in hot water with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection for short-weighing their products.

An inspector from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection found nine instances of false representation of quantity in Oscar Mayer products in Wisconsin stores, according to a press release from the agricultural agency.

More specifically, the company short-weighted eight packages of Oscar Mayer-brand cooked ham and one package of Oscar Mayer-brand honey ham in June and July 2012. The packages were located in Beloit, Dodgeville, Plover, Racine, Watertown, Waukesha and Wisconsin Rapids.

Oscar Mayer is owned by Kraft Foods Group, Inc., located in Northfield IL. Kraft didn’t admit to violating any Wisconsin laws, they’ll have to pay $13,911.50 civil forfeitures and take corrective actions for allegedly short-weighing packages of food in Wisconsin stores.

Syd Lindner, a spokesperson for Kraft Foods / Oscar Mayer, issued the following statement:

Quality is very important to our company.  That includes product weight.  Oscar Mayer produces several hundred million packages a year and we work to ensure the correct amount of food is placed in each and every one.  The State of Wisconsin cited us for nine packages that were slightly short.  This was an unplanned and unwanted variance.  We have looked at the cause with a team of experts and have made changes in our plant to strengthen our process. This includes making a substantial capital investment to improve our production line. We are working diligently to ensure compliance.

We respect the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture and their work, and are pleased to have settled with them on this matter so we can focus on making our great-tasting, high-quality products for consumers.

According to officials with the Department of Agriculture, the corrective actions will be made system-wide and in their Davenport, Iowa plant. 

These actions include:

  • System-wide steps:
    • Within the next five years, Oscar Mayer will install check-weighers (scales integrated in the assembly line that measure each package) on all production lines at an estimated $10 million cost to the company.
    • Oscar Mayer will assess the capability of all existing check-weighers by conducting a measurement system analysis.
    • Oscar Mayer will revise the end‐of‐shift net weight document review process to include a review to confirm that plant personnel followed net weight compliance procedures during the production run.
    • Oscar Mayer will provide training for all quality teams and regular follow‐up activities for quality managers.
  • Davenport plant:
    • Oscar Mayer will conduct net weight verification checks every 15 minutes on production line 4 for six months following the date on which those checks began (August 27, 2012).
    • Oscar Mayer will make changes to the layout of production line 4 to improve the transition points between conveyor belts with the goal of enhancing check-weigher performance.
    • Oscar Mayer will conduct a failure modes and effects analysis of production line 4.
Ray Ray Johnson January 30, 2013 at 05:55 PM
Oscar Meyer has a lightweight weenie problem. Subway has 11" footlongs. They both claim regret. "I'm sorry my weenie was small" -Oscar Meyer- "I'm sorry my footlong didn't measure up to my bragging." -Subway-. Next thing you know, I'll find out that I'm not actually saving any money at all at Menards; that it's not a bank or savings and loan or anything like that. Someone needs to be sentenced to 12 credits of ethics classes.
Bob McBride January 30, 2013 at 06:05 PM
9 hams got out the door underweight and as a result OM's going to have to spend $10MM on some weight checkers. Makes sense.
Jack January 30, 2013 at 07:04 PM
I wish this busy body bureaucrat would go after Subway for the short foot longs.
Jay Sykes January 30, 2013 at 07:31 PM
I assume this was 'sliced' product where the actual weight did not meet or exceed the amount listed on the pre-printed standard package. A link to the report?
Bren January 30, 2013 at 08:32 PM
I surmise that the nine packages represent a larger quality control issue, based on the new checks and balance metrics established. These should have already been in place. Kraft may find ways to improve quality and cut down opportunity costs through this process.
Joe Todor January 31, 2013 at 12:59 AM
Footlong is a trade-mark name ... not necessarily a guaranteed length, but maybe an average. The "foot-long" in the story "may" have been "trimmed" in the center by the complainer. just sayin'
Greg January 31, 2013 at 01:49 AM
Buy Usinger's products. They have some great stuff.
NObama 2012 January 31, 2013 at 03:31 AM
Obama's fault.
Joe Todor January 31, 2013 at 04:15 AM
"That's what SHE said"
Bob McBride January 31, 2013 at 04:20 AM
But no Wienermobile.
Greg January 31, 2013 at 04:44 AM
The drivers handed out weiner whistles. hard to beat that.
Mike Itzenhuiser January 31, 2013 at 04:44 AM
Anything that goes wrong in this country is Obama's fault.
scot January 31, 2013 at 11:54 AM
We have a Wiener as Gov., that`s short weighed also.
Jay Sykes January 31, 2013 at 02:04 PM
Time for a frank discussion: Always use condiments.
Bob McBride January 31, 2013 at 02:52 PM
Let's not take this any furter.
Greg January 31, 2013 at 04:22 PM
I relish these discussions, they're better than getting grilled on politics.
The Donny Show January 31, 2013 at 05:21 PM
Aren't all weiners an inch too short? Or is just my wife who seems to think that?
The Donny Show January 31, 2013 at 05:53 PM
Craig, Thanks for the joke. Not sure what you do for a living (if anything, see debate on unemployment), but you probably should stick with that. Kidding. Actually I am not.
StormyKnight January 31, 2013 at 06:21 PM
@Jay- speaking of condiments..... Not everyone in life can ketchup but everybody mustard!
The Donny Show January 31, 2013 at 08:06 PM
The lame jokes must stop. Please.
Kevin M. January 31, 2013 at 09:30 PM
If they found 9 all over the state, there must have been thousands if not millions more. Lesson learned for OM.


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