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Thursday, 7 March, 2002, 15:15 GMT
Sweets linked to child's death
Mini cup fruit jellies should be taken off the shelves 'immediately', says the FSA
Mini cup fruit jellies could cause choking
Parents have once again been warned not to let their children eat a particular type of sweet after it was implicated in the death of a child in the UK.

The Food Standards Agency says that certain mini cup fruit jelly products that contain Konjac could be dangerous.

Parents should be alert to the potential risk from these sweets and children should not buy or eat them

Suzi Leather
The products have been linked to a number of deaths from choking around the world.

The FSA first issued a warning in December, but has reiterated its advice following the death of a young child in February in the UK.

The cause of death is not yet known and is subject to an inquest which has not yet been held.

However, the fact that a minicup gel sweet may have been a factor in the death cannot be excluded at this stage.

Corner shops

FSA deputy chair Suzi Leather said: "Parents should be alert to the potential risk from these sweets and children should not buy or eat them.

"There may still be some of these sweets on sale and shops that have not heeded our warning should stop selling them now.

"Local authorities should also check again that they are not on sale locally and continue with that checking."

The sweets have often been sold in many small corner shops and possibly stalls at street markets.

In December local authorities were advised to visit shops and check that they were being taken off the shelves.

Port authorities were also alerted. Last month, containers at Southampton Docks holding 57,000 Malaysian made Konnyaku jelly sweets were confiscated during a joint operation by Southampton Trading Standards and the Port Health Authority.

The sweets have a number of different brand names including:

  • ABC Mini Fruit Bites
  • Fuji Coconut Flavor Jelly
  • Healthy Konnyaku jelly
  • Jn Jin Konjac Coconut Mini Gel Snack
  • New Choice Mini Fruit Gels
  • New Century's Choice
  • Rolin Mango Jelly Cup
  • Troofy Gels
The jellies are contained in cups about the size of individual mini pots of milk or coffee creamer.

Sticky jelly

They are dome-shaped with a diameter of about 3cm tapering to 2cm.

They have a rounded edge and are sealed with a foil lid.

The sweets are sold in various package sizes or individually.

Some packets may be labelled with precautionary advice.

Children tend to suck out and effectively "inhale" the sweet, which contains a soft, slippery type jelly and usually contain a hard, fruit flavoured gum at the centre. This increases the risk of choking.

The jellies contain a particular ingredient, konjac, which does not dissolve easily and could stay stuck in the throat.

The FSA first received reports of the dangers of the jelly sweets last August.

See also:

14 Dec 01 | Health
Warning over 'killer sweets'
19 Sep 01 | Health
Pyre milk given all-clear
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