Faulty food and electrical products in record recalls

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Batches of a Loyd Grossman korma sauce, Beko freezers from Turkey and Pfizer's hormone replacement drugs were part of a record 291 products that had to be recalled in the UK last year – a 27 per cent increase on 2010.

The recall figures report, from the City law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain, found faulty electrical and food products were the biggest culprits. When recall figures were first collated in 2003 there were only 143 product recalls in the UK during the year.

Stuart White, partner at RPC, said: "The increase this year could have been fed by high consumer demand for cheaper brands, particularly in the case of bigger ticket household products like cookers or freezers. It may be that some white label or smaller producers have had tosource cheaper suppliers to be competitive."

The report also revealed that pressure on manufacturers to "do more with less" may have affected food production standards in some cases. Meanwhile supply chain disruptions could have fed in to the rise in recalls.

Mr White said: "From natural disasters to political unrest, the last 12 months has seen substantial supply chain disruptions. These will have put pressure on manufacturers who may have turned to third- or fourth-tier suppliers to cope with the shortage."