Allergens / Manufacturing Facilities

American here. I have a severe allergy to several tree nuts (and, no, not coconut, even though I realize that coconut is classified as a tree nut for the time being within the USA ((although perhaps not for much longer))).

I’ve used 1.1 for a bit a long time ago, but took a break for unrelated reasons (mainly because I lived in a very remote area). Always was happy with Huel, though, especially because it is easy to find/order no matter where in the developed world I am (such as a year long assignment on a different continent), compared with products such as Soylent, which are very regionally limited. Unneeded background: I am an engineer, and having consistent nutrients and exercise when traveling on assignments is an underpinning pillar of my lifestyle. Huel is able to deliver on this in spades.

It seems as though with 3.0, the formula for Huel has been further globally streamlined, which is awesome (aside from some vitamin levels to conform to different regulatory bodies).

Now, even though the formula for the powdered product is unified/globally consistent, can we get better information, perhaps online, as to updates concerning where the Huel is manufactured and when manufacturing lines/facilities/processes change? There are several posts concerning altering of manufacturing lines for bars and such (I am only interested in the powders), but, for peace of mind, is there any way to see when factories or facilities are altered?

My Huel 3.0 product states that it was manufactured in Canada, for distribution in USA via Brooklyn. Now that Huel is attempting global consistency with its formula (for better or for worse), I think it would make sense to have a continually updated list of manufacturing facilities or lines that are used (obviously location would not have to be provided, but something such as Canada Facility 2 Line 4 – Black v3.0 Powder, Canada Facility 3 Line 2 – Bars CHANGED JAN 3) or something like that.

For a product that removes the thought of how I am going to shop for ingredients and prepare meals from my daily routine (freeing up mental space and time for other tasks), I feel that it is counterproductive to have to search online and read through forum posts for any potential “gotchas” with regard to manufacturing process changes, etc., which in my case can be life threatening if I am remiss in doing so. A centralized list with dates and updates would greatly streamline the process, as to something I can check once per order and crossreference with the SKU on my received product.

Huel is great in providing updates in the form of leaflets with regard to, for example, kelp, but I think that some further problems would be alleviated (for people with immune problems such as myself) or at least make Huel more appealing to those who might be on the fence with regard to allergy concerns. For those who would say “well do you do this with every product you purchase,” the answer is, yes, always reading new packaging, and I hardly buy prepackaged goods. Also, very large and established companies/conglomerates tend to not alter production lines and products nearly as frequently as smaller health food or powdered food type companies.

Thank you for your time!

As a followup: Is Huel powder manufactured from Canada on shared equipment with tree nuts that are not coconut?

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Great question and of course we will keep you updated. You can always drop us a message on here, via your chosen social platform, email or live chat too.

Although the formula has changed v3.0 Powder is made in the same factory as v1.1.

The equipment is sometimes shared with other treee nuts.

Hi, Dan! Thanks for the reply! Also, thank you for letting me know that at least the factory is the same.

The equipment is sometimes shared with other tree nuts.

This part is concerning to me, though, because, even though the factory may be the same, other things manufactured at the facility or on the lines might change in the intervening years. Furthermore, there is no labelling on the powder that I received which indicates that it is made on shared tree nuts equipment, which is strange considering how deeply thorough Huel was with regard to notifying users about kelp.

Is there any plan to put a tree nut shared warning label on your powdered products?

We already list that Huel contains tree nuts so we are notifying customers:

I understand that you don’t have an issue with coconut but we are meeting legal requirements, the same as we did with kelp.

As mentioned on parts of the site like here if you need more information you can chat to us, like you’re doing now!

Not saying that you aren’t meeting legal requirements, and I am obviously fully aware of the labels, but it is strange that you go to the effort to state

which may have come into contact with crustacean , shellfish , and fish .

and yet there is nothing about using shared machinery or a may contain statement with other (actual, genetically speaking) tree nuts or potentially peanuts. I know it is a USA label requirement that coconuts currently need to be labeled as such, but they are not related, as you probably know. Stating that your product contains tree nuts (coconut) and yet not listing that the machinery is in fact being shared with actual tree nuts is disingenuous, even if it is legal.

I’ll make an example. Say someone has a vegetable allergy. Tomatoes are fruits, but are common in salad, so let’s pretend it is required to label tomatoes as vegetables.

Contains: Vegetables (Tomato)

Meanwhile the manufacturing line is used to make salad at times, and is shared with vegetables, yet there is no indication of this whatsoever on the label. That’s how your label will read to virtually anyone with a TN allergy.

I get what you are saying but I disagree it’s disingenuous. We label the big 8 allergens, which includes shellfish. If companies labelled all possible allergens such as fruits, vegetables etc there would be no room for anything else on the label.

In the link I provided above we state “However, we recognize that people can suffer from allergies that are outside the US recognized ‘key allergens’, so we assess ingredients and keep a record of other ingredients in our product that may have allergenic potential. If you have any specific inquiries, please contact us.”

You have a specific inquiry, you 've contacted us via the forum and I’m answering. Just to be clear peanuts are not an issue and the tree nuts are not part of our producers allergen statement because they meet the strict requirements not to declare it. However, I wanted to be transparent with you and I now realise that as created more confusion for you, which I’m sorry for.

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If companies labelled all possible allergens such as fruits, vegetables etc there would be no room for anything else on the label.

Well, now you’re just being facetious. If you look at many products in the USA, you will often see labels that say Manufactured on Shared Equipment (Tree Nuts) or a May Contain (Tree Nuts) designation. Yes, the product does contain Tree Nuts (Coconut) from a USA designation, but coconuts are not nuts. Again, if you show this thread to someone with a TN allergy, perhaps in person they may be able to better explain it to you.

Not sure why you’re being so defensive about this, but, again, I am sure you can find someone in your friend circle with a TN allergy, and they will perhaps be better able to explain why your labeling in this regard is misleading in that it is not in line with the depth and care (which is, again, fantastic imho) used with your other ingredients and potential cross-contamination concerns.

Anyway, you’ve lost a customer and previous advocate. Good luck with the rest of your 3.0 rollout.

Sorry I’m not sure what I’m missing here?

We label for the required allergens. You asked if some of the equipment is sometimes shared with other tree nuts I said yes. Both the label and my answer provide enough information that someone with a tree nut allergy, such as yourself, should avoid Huel.

I’m aware most people with a tree nut allergy can have products that contain coconut, this is where contacting us as you have done can provide that further information required.