Quorn Controversy

QuornDuring a recent grocery shopping trip, I decided to pick up a box of frozen Quorn Chicken Patties. I had previously heard good things about Quorn on vegetarian cooking shows and the packaging was full of appealing healthy phrases like “Low In Fat”, “0g Trans Fat”, “High In Protein”, “High In Fiber”.

My son and I had Quorn burgers for dinner that night and we were pleasantly suprised by how good they tasted- just like chicken! I was thrilled to have found such a tasty new meat substitute to add to our vegetarian meal rotation. My happiness was short lived when both my son and I started having stomach aches. My son had it worse than me. He said he felt like he was going to puke. I felt like I had swallowed a lead brick that kept on expanding. I went online to look up exactly what is in Quorn.

The official Quorn website states that Quorn is a mycoprotein and that there are 600,000 types of fungi in the world, including a wide variety of mushrooms, truffles and morels. That didn’t sound all that bad. They made it seem like Quorn is a mushroom burger. Wrong!

The mycoprotein that is in Quorn is called “Fusarium Venenatum”. It is a moldy fungus that is grown in large fermentation tanks by the Quorn corporation. Under certain conditions, “Fusarium venenatum” can morph into toxins known as trichothecene mycotoxins, causing nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Quorn products have sickened hundreds of people. CSPI has been gathering their sickening stories and sharing them on their website. They also are pushing for the removal of Quorn products from store shelves.

After finding all of that out, I thank my lucky stars that we didn’t have an extreme allergic reaction. If I had known about the true ingredients in Quorn, I would have never tried it! We will be avoiding Quorn like the plague in the future and will be sticking to the veggie burger brands that that are mold and fungus free.

[http://www.cspinet.org/quorn/]

[http://www.quorn.us//cmpage.aspx?section=WhatIsQuorn]

66 thoughts on “Quorn Controversy

  1. Thanks for this post. I was sickened very badly by Quorn, and initially thought it may have been to poorly handled frozen foods. Now that I read that the organism is Fusarium venenatum, my reaction must have been attributed to that! I got so sick that my kidneys hurt!!! I don’t think I’ll be trying it a second time to confirm the reaction either! OUCH!!

    • Dani on

      Wow. Less people have adverse reactions to Quorn than they do to soy. Do you realize what cheese, yogurt, and beer are made with, just like Kim said? I have been eating Quorn for years and it has NEVER made anyone I know sick.

      • Sansome on

        And look at all the cheeses that have a mould based skin. Seems there needs to be more context in this article.

        • Debra on

          My son’s 11 year old friend Miles Bengco just died from an allergic reaction to Turk’y Burgers from Quorn. Over reaction? I think not! This needs to be off the market. There was not proper labeling that this was made from mold grown in vast vats. It appears to be made from mushrooms, the the like. False advertising and this child is now deceased. Look him up he has a page on the internet to help with is medical costs and burial costs because he had asthma he was denied insurance. Such a shame. No parent should have to lose their child due to a company’s failure to properly disclose what is in their product, period!

          • Paula on

            Today we say goodbye to this precious child. I echo what Debra said. If your child has allergies….especially to MOLD this product is deadly. It is labeled as Mycoprotein. How was a parent to know this mycoprotein was a fungus ? It’s clearly mislabeled. Won’t bring him back but perhaps just perhaps one child will be saved and a parent won’t have to go through the pain of loosing a 11yr old child.

  2. Kim on

    I find the selective suspension of suspicion regarding food pretty laughable–I mean, if we’re going to call for Quorn to be pulled off of grocery store shelves, shall we also remove cheese, yogurt, beer, wine, etc? Cheese and yogurt of quality are actually teeming with bacteria. Penicillin is made from mold.

    An allergic reaction can happen to foods that are seemingly “pure” or those that have a “yuck” factor in their production. While thousands of people have deadly allergies to nuts, we don’t do much to ensure that factories which produce every kind of food are nut-free, even though exposure to nuts in even the most miniscule quantities can be equivalent to ingesting arsenic, with anaphylaxis leading to death in minutes.

    So where’s the no nuts/no cheese lobby? What makes Quorn special?

  3. Quorn is this vegetarian’s best friend. Unlike the vast sea of awful tasting, crappy textured soy and wheat gluten products out there, Quorn actually tastes good and has a texture not unlike the real thing. Yes, shockingly, one out of 150,000 consumers has an adverse reaction to the ingredients on Quorn. If you are one of those individuals, I invite you not to eat it. But there are 400 times as many people (one in 350) who have an adverse reaction to soy.
    Educate yourself before you write this alarmist clap-trap!

    • Cleveland on

      Well said. I love Quorn, we buy the chicken patties, tenders and meatballs…they’re awesome. Have eaten them for years and served them to people, never had a problem.

  4. Gary on

    I agree with Mary, what a lot of hogwash. More people have reactions to all kinds of other things than to Quorn. Should we remove peanuts from sale?

    This paragraph is laughable:
    ‘It is a moldy fungus that is grown in large fermentation tanks by the Quorn corporation. Under certain conditions, “Fusarium venenatum” can morph into toxins known as trichothecene mycotoxins”

    Just because it is produced in fementation tanks doesn’t make it bad, and what do you think yeast is if not a fungus– and how do you think it is produced? (Plenty of people are allergic to yeast too.)

    A fungus cannot ‘morph’ into a toxin. it may under certain circumstances become toxic, as can chicken.

    No, I don’t work for Quorn, but I do get tired of this sort of nonsense!

    • Cleveland on

      Miso is fermented. Sauerkraut is fermented. Many foods are fermented. I just made a batch of hot sauce by fermenting peppers. And then of course, there’s beer..

    • Joey Schmidt on

      Peanuts have a warning label, which is why they are allowed to stay on the shelf. I’m here because my fiancee has been violently ill on two spearate occasions from eating Quorn products. We know it’s Quorn because it’s all that came up and now (through this article and the CSPI page) we are aware that it CAN cause allergic reactions. The issue isn’t that it doesn’t affect everyone, the issue is that there is no labelling on the packet to say that it might. The fanboys and fangirls can keep it, but don’t deny us the means to make an informed choice.

      • rebekah lehman on

        i agree, just like a lot of foods some of us can eat it and some of us can’t, it makes sence that if we know some people may be alergic by putting it on the label we need not look any futher or pay dr. bills to see what we are alergic too.

  5. Gary on

    PS I’m sure a minority of people do have an adverse reaction to Quorn, as people do to other foodstuffs– and that’s a shame, but put it into perspective, please!

  6. Erika on

    I agree with Mary and Gary, I studied Food Technology and trust me that there’s a lot more crap out there that is far more dangerous to health and Quorn is certainly a good option in taste and quality for vegetarians. Soy is still difficult to work with in the sensory department.
    And as for processes, just fyi, if it’s done in a fermentation tank it means it’s under CONTROLLED conditions so thinks don’t “turn into” what they’re not supposed to. Please inform yourself well with food engineering terms and allergic reactions before turning them into a scandal.

  7. I tried Quorn recently, with no knowledge of the controvery surrounding it. My body acted like I was giving it highly-artifical chemicals – in other words, I could feel that my body did not know what to do with it. I won’t be eating it again.

    Here is an excerpt from a 1997 article on tricothecenes from Quorn.
    Molecular Phylogenetic, Morphological, and Mycotoxin Data Support Reidentification of the Quorn Mycoprotein Fungus as Fusarium venenatum
    K. O’Donnella, E. Cigelnika and H. H. Casperb
    “Analysis of mycotoxins from rice cultures inoculated with Quorn strain NRRL 25416 revealed that four type A trichothecenes are produced, but at low levels relative to strain NRRL 22198 ofF. venenatum. No trichothecene mycotoxins, however, were detected from the analysis of three commercial Quorn products marketed for human consumption in England.”
    Fungal Genetics and Biology
    Volume 23, Issue 1, February 1998, Pages 57-67

  8. Mary Lee on

    Quorn & CSPI: The Other Fake Meat

    Friday, August 30, 2002
    By Steven Milloy

    You might think the anti-meat food police at the Center for Science in the Public Interest would be cheering the new meat substitute Quorn.

    Instead, CSPI is scaring the public and bad-mouthing Quorn to the Food and Drug Administration.

    Quorn is “the processed cellular mass that is obtained from the filamentous fungus Fusarium venenatum strain PTA-2684,” according to the manufacturer’s application to the FDA. The fungus by-product was approved in the U.K. in 1985 and is the top-selling meat substitute in Europe.

    The FDA approved Quorn in the U.S. last January. CSPI soon went into action.

    Weeks later, CSPI claimed Quorn was “deceptively labeled” as originating from mushrooms and filed complaints with the FDA, and U.K. and European regulators.

    In May, CSPI called Quorn the “new Olestra,” alluding to the bogus CSPI-generated controversy about Procter & Gamble’s fat substitute. As with Olestra, CSPI claimed Quorn was making people sick.

    This month CSPI issued media releases calling for a recall and claiming Quorn was linked to “severe vomiting.”

    CSPI alleged in an Aug. 15 release: “One woman experienced fecal incontinence in public places, while another feared choking to death on her vomit. People have told us that they fainted in [the subway] and on the toilet, vomited out the window of a taxi, and missed work, Christmas dinners, concerts and other activities.”

    There is a dangerous fungus among us, but it’s not Quorn. It’s CSPI.

    CSPI’s claim that Quorn is deceptively labeled makes a mountain of a molehill.

    Quorn’s link with mushrooms was made to help explain the product to consumers, according to Quorn’s manufacturer, Marlow Foods. Quorn is derived from a fungus and mushrooms are fungi.

    CSPI wants Quorn labeled as “mold-based” — implying that Quorn is some sort of health threat.

    Quorn is currently working with the FDA to refine the description.

    CSPI’s health claims about Quorn are completely unfounded.

    CSPI says a study filed by Marlow Foods with the FDA found up to 10 percent of 200 volunteers experienced vomiting, nausea or stomach aches after eating Quorn.

    CSPI chief Michael Jacobson may want to brush up on his math, though. A closer look at the study indicates only one person might have had an adverse reaction to Quorn.

    As food allergies are common, this is no reason to disparage Quorn. Many consumers are allergic to soy protein, shellfish, peanut, dairy products, and other foods. Marlow Foods estimates the adverse reaction rate for Quorn to be about 1 in 146,000 consumers.

    This is 400 times lower than the adverse reaction rate for soy products and over 29,000 times lower than for lactose intolerance from dairy products.

    So why is CSPI trying so carnivorously to destroy Quorn?

    CSPI appears to have an unsavory relationship with Quorn competitor, Gardenburger — a company that rails against Quorn on its Web site and pesters the FDA.

    CSPI regularly promotes Gardenburger products on its Web site and publications.

    In the April 1998 issue of its newsletter, for example, CSPI stated: “Remember the saturated fat and the E.coli bacteria that could be hiding inside [a hamburger]? You can keep the taste but forget the worries with Gardenburger.”

    CSPI recently spotlighted Flame Grilled Hamburger Style Gardenburgers as a “favorite” that “taste like they’re hot off the coals.”

    That’s from a group labeling itself as a “nonprofit education and advocacy organization that focuses on improving the safety and nutritional quality of our food.”

    “R-r-r-i-i-i-i-ght,” as Austin Powers’ Dr. Evil might say.

    The president of Gardenburger e-mailed food brokers a copy of a letter sent by CSPI to the FDA supposedly documenting adverse consumer reactions to Quorn.

    The e-mail asked the brokers to send the letter to retailers and notes “these are the same guys who hounded Procter & Gamble until they finally withdrew the fat substitute Olestra from sale. Net, I’d say Quorn’s days are numbered …”

    This cutthroat e-mail is even more sinister as it was sent to brokers the same morning CSPI sent its letter to the FDA but a week before CSPI publicly announced its findings.

    CSPI even told the FDA, “… considering the plethora of tasty, nutritious meat alternatives on supermarket shelves, there is absolutely no need for [Quorn].”

    CSPI’s attempted mugging of Quorn is also odd since the food police usually target bigger fish like the fast food, soft drink and snack food industries.

    Though CNN, The Associated Press, The Wall Street Journal, and other media outlets have fallen for this scam, successful public relations may not be enough to save Gardenburger. The company’s sales peaked in 1999 at $88 million and declined to $59 million in 2001.

    We can only hope the same trend befalls CSPI’s unscrupulous shrieking.

    Steven Milloy is the publisher of JunkScience.com , an adjunct scholar at the Cato Institute and the author of Junk Science Judo: Self-defense Against Health Scares and Scams (Cato Institute, 2001).

    • Joey Schmidt on

      When you see your loved one convulsing on the floor being violently ill, then I hope you can tell me that “CSPI’s health claims about Quorn are completely unfounded.”

      They are not saying everyone, but a heads up would be nice.

  9. Jessica on

    This article is ridiculous. I’ve eaten Quorn plenty of times (at least once per week) and have never had any adverse reaction to it. As with any food there will be people who have adverse reactions, but the products are not poisonous, as this article seems to claim.

  10. Mr N on

    You had an allergic reaction to a foodstuff. What is so special about that? Many people have allergic reactions to lots of different types food. Just because it is produced using a mycoprotein, does not mean it should be ridiculed as it is heat treated in order to destroy any excess RNA and DNA anyway. Although your reaction must be typical to any human being’s, even though it should not be. Please put it into perspective. (I am sorry for sounding harsh at the start of this comment, and I am deeply sorry for what sounds like a painful adverse reaction.)

  11. David on

    I definitely don’t want to single out Quorn as being uniquely allergenic, but some of the strong anti-Quorn responses here might stem from surprise–maybe even shock–at experiencing such a strong reaction to this foodstuff.

    I’m just over a 6-hour jag of vomiting, diarrhea, nausea, and what felt like a knife in my upper stomach. It started in the parking lot of a shopping center, where, while shopping, my stomach started to hurt. I walked out to my car with the intent of racing home, but instead spent an hour on my hands and knees vomiting onto the pavement.

    When I got back into the car, I couldn’t sit up straight. My stomach felt like it had been twisted into a knot. I was sweating and shaking and couldn’t sit or lie comfortably. I had to call my girlfriend to come pick me up and take me to her house. Once there, I writhed on the floor of her bathroom in between bouts of vomiting and diarrhea, alternately sweating and getting the chills.

    The stomach pain and vomiting are done, it seems, but the diarrhea continues.

    I’m not trying to be dramatic here, and no one has to believe this testimony. I’m not food-phobic: I’m omnivorous and eat a wide variety of meat and non-meat proteins, lots of cooked and raw vegetables, fish, fruit, pasta, brown rice, jasmine rice, etc. I also eat different cuisines all the time: Americana, Mexican, Indian, Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese, Japanese, French, Italian, German, blah blah. I have never, ever had a reaction to food like this, with the exception of actual food poisoning, and I don’t remember the intense pain.

    The reason I attribute this attack to Quorn is because I had a similar reaction five nights ago. It wasn’t as intense as I simply sampled a small amount from a Quorn dish I was making for lunch the next day. My stomach didn’t hurt quite as bad, but the vomiting and diarrhea happened, and it was a 6 or 7 hour ordeal.

    Now, two other possible culprits: frozen spinach and Prego tomato sauce. I made a quick bolognese sauce using the Quorn instead of meat. I suppose it’s possible that one of these two ingredients are tainted. The pasta’s fine; I had that with some chicken.

    Figuring the earlier attack as either a stomach virus or stress over the fact that I had to put my dog down this week, I went ahead and had the bolognese with pasta for lunch today. Well, now I know what made me sick the first time.

    I’m glad Quorn works for most folks. Again, I’m not trying to single it out, but I am shocked that I had such an extreme reaction and will be throwing it and the sauce away, never to buy it or eat it again.

  12. Deanna on

    My family loves Quorn brand products. We have never had any difficulty with the products since we began using them just over a year ago. I became a vegetarian because food products containing meat made me horribly ill. I have not started demanding that all meat based products be removed from market shelves simply because I cannot digest it. If I had an adverse reaction, I would not be so quick to discount improper food handling or storage at the store, or contamination in another food product. These products were sold for twenty years in Europe before being introduced to the American market; wouldn’t they have figured out that they were toxic in that time period? I’m pretty sure they would have. I will continue to use Quorn products, because they taste so much better than soy based products!

  13. Pingback: There is a Fungus…Amongus! « The Daily Quaker!

  14. It’s a kind of ignorence when people that have no problem with eating Quorn cannot accept or believe the horrible stories by the people (like myself) who witness that severe vomiting after eating it.
    I experienced it twice and it was only the second time that I could connect it to Quorn so clear. I’s not the frequency that it occurs, but it’s the fact that it can occur. And the vomiting can be even be more dangerous because the substance of what we vomit seems to be more dry in the end and we almost choke!
    Hope that we will be warned by labeling in the future.
    I will never, never eat a Quorn product again in my life.

    • rebekah lehman on

      i’m, thankful for the information, i have problems with my stomach anyway and would not try it simply because i could be one of those that would be alergic to it. thank you much for the info;

  15. Abram on

    Not to sound like paranoid, but I think half of these comments are propaganda from the dozens of other companies/lobbyists etc, who have something lose by Quorn be a healthy and tasty meat substitute. This stuff is the number one selling meat sub in Europe and I know plenty of vegies that eat this stuff. Something smells fishy.

    • Joey Schmidt on

      When you see your loved one convulsing on the floor being violently ill, then I hope you can tell me that “Something smells fishy.”

      Obviously not everyone is going to be affected, but ignoring it is wrong. I for one am not calling for the Quorn shelved to be emptied, I just think a label on there would prevent further instances of what happened to my fiancee.

  16. Daniel on

    I am a student at the University of Toronto and have been studying the controversy around Quorn allergies for several months now.

    According to the CSPI in one of their many letters concerning the allergy risks of Quorn, the 1 in 146,000 adverse reaction rate reported by Marlow Foods (Manufacturer of Quorn) was calculated by dividing the total number of complaints reported to the company by the number of portions sold in the same year. If this is true then the company is being deceptive by suggesting that 1 in 146,000 eaters will have a reaction.
    The company is suggesting that each consumed portion represents an eater. Most eaters will consume more than a single portion of Quorn in a year. So you actually have to first divide the total portions sold by the average number of portions consumed per eater. Let’s assume for the sake of argument that the average eater consumes 2 portions of Quorn product at a meal and let’s say they eat 2 Quorn meals a week for a total of 4 portions a week. Now multiply by 52 weeks/yr to give 208 portions per year per eater. Now divide the total number of portions the company has sold in a year by 208 and you have an estimate of the number of “eaters”.
    NOW you can divide the number of complaints by this significantly reduced number to give an estimate of the adverse event frequency. If you used the calculations above you would get 1/730. Now assume that the majority of adverse events go unreported to the manufacturer and you begin to see that the situation could very likely be far worse than the manufacturer is suggesting.

    • The ones with adverse events will only eat that firs portion though….there will be biases on your way too….

  17. Sarah on

    If Quorn makes you feel nauseous then please don’t buy it. If something makes you ill then you don’t eat it – simple. You don’t have to demand everyone stops eating it too. Leave it on the shelves for those of us who have been eating it for 20+ years to enjoy.
    The USA should endeavor to keep up with Europe, not fall behind.
    Try looking into how a chicken nugget is produced, then compare it with how a Quorn nugget is produced – I know which I’d rather eat.

  18. nicola on

    I wish all the dis-believers could just have 5 minutes of the sickness that i had after eating quorn, then they might be a bit more understanding. Im not saying it should be removed from the shelves, but better labeling, to warn people with allergies. I have never felt so ill in all my life. It totally floored me!!

  19. I certainly believe you were as sick as you say. Food allergies can be horrible. I have known people with lactose and nut allergies that cause symptoms this severe, and worse. Some allergies can cause potentially fatal swelling. I think the point here is that many people enjoy these products. It makes no more sense to pull Quorn off the shelves than it does to pull milk, nuts and other common allergens. Labeling similar to nuts and soda would help, although this is a unique product, so you are unlikely to know if you are allergic until you try it.

  20. mat schofield on

    After consuming quorn I have developed horrendous stomach cramps and more worrying pain in the region of my kidneys. I have tried to be sick but am unable to although I feel like I would like to. My Mrs ate the same meal and is fine but guess this is definitely off the menu from now on.
    Mat UK

  21. Steven on

    I LOVE Quorn. Never had a problem.

    I BELIEVE the reports of people who have had reactions.

    I know you’ll take this the wrong way: I DON’T CARE.

    Oh, sure, I empathize with your suffering. I’ve had food poisoning and all manner of gastric issues in my life. But SO WHAT?!

    Why should my problem take center stage when others don’t have a problem… UNLESS I’m either a canary in the coal mine, or UNLESS I’m part of a statistically significant number of people who have a problem (think Vioxx).

    I don’t care if the company was liberal with their math… again, unless their math was SO far off, or unless their product is TRULY harming people (and, sorry, but temporary suffering is not harm; it’s dinner party and blog fodder).

    What sickens ME is the phenomenon (which seem unique to the USA) where we take our personal experience and want to use it to dictate the behavior of others, where we try to blame anyone outside ourselves for our problems, and where we expect to be able to live in some sort of antiseptic universe where we never experience displeasure caused (or seemingly caused) by another.

    THAT’s what makes me vomit.

  22. Suerae on

    My family has been eating Quorn for about a year now and thankfully have not had any adverse reactions. I completely believe that some are allergic to this product, but agree with the majority that it is not cause for alarm bells to sound. I am thankful that I haven’t so far heard of any deaths related to Quorn consumption, as we have all heard the horror stories from nuts, spinach, beef, chicken, fish, shellfish, eggs, even lettuce, etc. And I’m sure if there were deaths related to this product, CSPI would make sure we all knew about them. All food products are potential allergens and unfortunately, we don’t know if we’re allergic until we try them. In many cases, it is the processing of the food that makes us sick. And for those that might be squeamish to eat fungi that is processed in vats in a controlled environment, I challenge you to go visit your local slaughterhouse, chicken coup, or fish processing plant.

    For those of us with picky vegetarians in our families, it is very difficult to find high protein foods that taste good and are not made of soy, which many are also allergic to. I appreciate that people want food to be safe, with proper testing and labeling done, but I don’t appreciate the unnecessary panic that is caused by people, like the author of the above article, who have no basis for such panic other than one personal experience. As someone mentioned, these products have been around for 20+ years in Europe with little controversy. And I am grateful for another meatless option.

  23. Christine on

    I do feel bad for anyone who has had an allergic reaction to Quorn, but that isn’t a reason to be afraid. Allergies to peanuts are extremely common, but nobody would dare to ask for peanut butter to be taken off the shelves.

    I eat Quorn on a regular basis and have never been sick from it. For a while I was trying to cut back on Quorn because because it is a processed food and I’m trying to eat more whole foods. But then I read that Quorn is very popular with CRON (calorie reduction optimal nutrition) people who are extremely serious about nutrition. The consensus with them is that vegetarians should be more worried about tofu and other soy products.

  24. Anthonio on

    I ate some Quorn chicken and it was great, but it caused discomfort and constipation. I don’t think they should pull it though I’m just allergic to it but it still tast good as fuck. In fact I’m hurting from it right now.I Will try in a small portion next time if there’s a next time.

  25. Illingworth on

    I have had quorn for the second time,and both times i was violently sick,the first was at home and i just thought just maybe its a bug,then i had it at work ,well i thought it was mince,but when i got home i violently vomited, it wasn’t untill the following day that i found out it was quorn cottage pie,now i know i can’t touch it ever again,the pains in my stomache where awfull.

  26. Laura on

    My family and I have had quorn a number of times with no ill effects. We don’t eat soy so I was delighted to find this making its way into American stores!

  27. Steve on

    I was also violently sick after eating Quorn products, at first I thought it was a bug, I have never had any reaction to anything else in my life, (not even after drinking too much), so after keeping a note on the things I ate, it all pointed to Quarn, it was then, I decided to look on the net, to find that others have also had the exact reaction, now what are the chances of being violently sick 3-4 times after eating Quorn Sausages, Steak cutlets and chicken?

    • L. UK on

      I was just reading this looonnng page of comments and was not going to leave my own, But when I saw your’s I thought I should try and help you Steve(even though you left a long time ago).
      Using only a basic understanding of mathematics I would estimate that if you are allergic or intolerant to Quorn (as you describe above) then the chances are roughly 100% of being violently sick.

  28. Cameron on

    You can be self-righteous as you like unless you are one in 4.5% of documented cases of people who have extreme and very painful reactions to this fungus found in Quorn products. I have never been so sick in my entire life – extremely painful and debilitating vomiting for over 5 hours, accompanied by diahorrea. Why would I make this up? I have been a vegetarian for over 20 years and Quorn is defnitely on my blacklist. I have suffered three attacks from eating this companies products, and I definitely know it is the sole cause of the allergic reactions. I will never touch this crap again.

  29. Ed Lephindick on

    I definitely believe all of the incidents reported above. But I eat Quorn every day. In fact, since 2009, 100% of my diet has been Quorn. All solid products that I eat are Quorn-based, and the beverages that I drink are 100% Quorn starch and water. I know it’s bad for some people, but eating and drinking only Quorn all the time works just great for me.

  30. Jim on

    I like Quorn products. I haven’t tried all of them though. I’ll skip on the chicken and the bacon product versions they do. I eat their burgers and Quorn mince regularly. My family eat their burgers too because they’re healthier than the animal burgers.

    Each to their own – but I’m sure there are plenty of satisfied people like me.

  31. Shawn on

    Quorn products are amazing and have never made anyone I know sick. More people get sick from soy products. Get a life instead of complaining.

  32. Sarah on

    I like Quorn. The burgers and chicken strips on a sandwich are really good, and the turkey burger cut up goes good on salad. If you have an allergic reaction, don’t eat it, and it’s products should be labeled for people with allergies. Food poisoning sucks but it’s not uncommon and you’ll live.

  33. Hi there.

    I live in the UK and myself and other vegetarians have been eating Quorn products for years and out of 22 people questioned not one single individual has had any adverse affects (including 10 year old twin boys) Whilst it is unfortunate that some people cannot tolerate Quorn (I for some reason cannot eat Celery & Sweetcorn without dire digestinal consequences!!) Why should this safe product be banned. It seems to me that this is about big business. I lived and worked in New York for a year and sampled Gardenburger products I was not ill but I did not like the taste of any of their products. But that is purely my chioce as a consumer. I would not campaign to have it banned under some ‘weird science’ which is basically unproven & scaremongering. When you think about the process of reformed meat/chicken/hams/turkey. Then that to me is abhorent but if you wish to each those products who am I to judge.

  34. Alec on

    I hiv eaten quorn fa years. Until recently ah’v nivver hid nae bother. But syne aa ess has kicked aff ah’v hid een of ma arms drape aff. Noo it’s amost impossible tae eat quorn. Ah hope aa ye feert folk dinnae experience the same thing.

  35. jonathan somogyi on

    Ive been eating quorn for months with zero adverse effects. I think its alot healthier than Soy, which is wrapped in even greater controversy than mycoprotein.

  36. Cleveland on

    Hmmmm, I wonder if this negative campaign could be the influence of Big Ag whose number two product net to corn is soy.

  37. I vomit everytime I eat red grapes. maybe cause i don´t wash them good enough, as the mold on them can cause vomitting and food poisoning. But really I don´t go and demand that they are taken of the market or that they should be cleaned better by manufacturer, I simply just stay away fro them. EASY……There are medicines people glady will fill them selves with that causes much more severe adverse events then this……

    I like Ouorn and as long as i do not have any reaction I will eat it. I feel sorry for you guys who do experience it……

  38. Brittany on

    OK for all of the people make ignorant comments about the greatest of Quorn products and that people should stop complaining, etc. I for one was a serious Quorn supporter. I had every type of their product and ate them regularly. After several months I started getting extremely ill from eating them. My fiancee ate them without getting sick.

    I for one have literally never been allergic to anything. Furthermore, I used to eat the products and developed the allergy and adverse reaction over time. People make their stories known, not to complain but rather inform other people with the attempt to save them from the seriously horrible sickness that occurs from eating the food.

    The actual “true” statistics are estimated to be 1 in 25 people getting sick. Although Quorn throws out a bogus number by calculating the complaints that they received (not the total complaints) by the amount of products sold. The statistics Quorn states (1 in 146,000) is misrepresented and does not account for people getting sick who don’t report it or make a report elsewhere. Furthermore, a household may purchase 10 products at once which is not considered because the statistics are calculated as each product being sold to one person. The statistics are grossly misrepresented.

    In no way am I trying to prevent people from eating the product, however people should be informed that their is a potential possibility that you may be allergic to the product. This is necessary in preventing people from getting sick for no reason. It is required that soy, dairy, nuts, etc are labeled on products and this should adhere to the same standards. I understand how delicious the products are and truly wish that I could eat them but I would rather make people aware of the possible illness that may occur than do nothing. Do not sit and judge people for making their sickness known.

  39. Unfortunately, there are risks with everything we eat. People have allergic reactions to a whole host of products, but the reality is that MOST of us do not. I have been eating Quorn from the moment it became availabel. I have no idea when this was. I am 54, and have been a vegetarian for 40 years. It was hard in the early says, but I have not touched any meat product since then. Not even biscuits with gelatine. I must have been eating Quorn for well over 20 years, and I have never had any adverse affects. To push to BAN these products, that to my mind is excessive and is just another example of the minority forcing their opinions upon the majority. If it causes you sickness, don’t eat it, but don’t stop the rest of us from doing so. Peanuts can kill you. They are still on the shelf. Not sure if I’ve ever heard of anyone dying from eating Quorn, but I do hear of people dying from eating beef. So, let’s just takle a step back, and use some common sense. That is something which is sadly lacking in our society today.

  40. Irina on

    My daughter is a vegetarian and I bought her a bag of the Quorn meatballs. We had spaghetti and meatballs last night. Fortunately, she did not get sick at all but I was very ill. Within 1/2 hour, I was sweating, had very bad stomach cramps, felt nauseated, and had a taste in my mouth like I was going to vomit. Sometimes the cramping was so bad, it felt like uterine contractions in childbirth. I was up out of bed all night going to the bathroom, wondering what was wrong. Then I did a search about Quorn products and the reaction some people have, which matches mine. I will never touch them again and will not give them to my daughter. This started at 7 pm last night. It is 1 pm the next day and I am still very nauseated, have stomach cramps that are less severe, and have a headache.

  41. Wayne on

    Hi, I had the Quorn burgers and had the feeling of a heavy stomach a few hours after eating; in the morning I felt really sick. This has happened once before when I bought these, but thought nothing of it the first time round. When I had them again last night I got the same symtoms as before; heavy bloated stomach and nausea. My friend had the same when eating their snack sized sausage rolls.

  42. Darren on

    Hi, I have tried Quorn mince and have had no nausea effects or feeling unwell. I guess the best thing to do is try Quorn mince yourself, you either like it or you don’t. I prefer Quorn mince instead of Meat pies, Sausages, sausage rolls. Do you know what they put in these meat products. Research it and decide for yourself, Even better make them homemade then you know what you are eating.

  43. Sabrina on

    My situation is different.

    I LOVE Quorn – I ate it often and have for several years. It was a lifesaver to me when I went away for school where they had few vegetarian options.

    HOWEVER, all these years I have suffered fatigue, cloudy head, facial redness/blotchyness, joint & back pain, mildly swollen eyes and lips, and a weakened immune system. My symptoms have worsened as time went by and fluctuated. Through the process of trial and error I have discovered that Quorn is in fact the culprit. I will never touch the stuff ever again. Finally I have my life back.

    To those of you enjoying Quorn “with out side effects” I suggest that if you happen to suffer from symptoms that you cannot pinpoint to something else you take a look at Quorn and experiment with eliminating it from your diet.

    My purpose of sharing my story with you is to prevent someone else from suffering for years like I have.

  44. Nina on

    My housemate who is constantly on a diet eats Quorn and gave me some, have to admit it tasted fine as I didn’t realise it wasn’t chicken but I thought she had poisoned me. The following day I had severe stomache cramps and diarrhea I thought I was going to die, it was the same symptoms as having food poisoning! Great diet food if this is how it works! If people want to eat this then feel free. I’ve had Quorn mince a couple of times too and that also has the same effect thankfully I’m quite happy to eat ‘real’ good quality meat rather than this ‘test tube’ meat alternative.

  45. Helen on

    My son ate Quorn a week ago. He is 6’3″ and weighs 260 pounds. He is young and WAS healthy. He has never been allergic to anything in his 27 years of life. He could have died from this stuff!!! He got violently ill, had a grande mall seizure and now, a week later, is still sick!!! He has a lot of muscle pain, he is having memory problems, he is having emotional problems and panic attacks. He has been to the hospital twice and then a naturapath because the doctors at the hospital didn’t help. The Naturapath put him on a detox cleanse to get the mycotoxins out of his body!!! The mycotoxins actually kill body cells. He will be trying to recover from this for a long time!!! Hopefully, he can fully recover! Do not compare this crap to peanuts or soy or other common allergins. There are more people getting sick from this laboratory grown mold than any of the common allergins. Also, most people know what things they are allergic to so they can avoid them.How does a person who has never had allergies to anything avoid a product that almost kills them the first time they eat it??????????? I am going to do whatever I can to get this product off the shelves. If my son had been sickly, or elderly, this stuff would’ve killed him! How do we know that it hasn’t killed some elderly person who lived alone???

  46. John on

    Wow, some classic examples of complete ignorance here. Does this mean if you don’t suffer from a shellfish allergy it doesn’t exist? Unlike the anecdotal garbage being trotted out here – some people have actually studied this objectively. People have and do suffer from severe and sometimes instant reactions to this “food” – and the reactions studied are ALLERGIC reactions. Just because YOU suffer from it doesn’t mean it’s made up. I don’t suffer from an allergy to this “product” by the way. And if it’s good enough to put allergy warnings on products for gluten then it’s good enough for this.

  47. John Graham on

    How on earth can you publish such fatuous material with such assuredness? We have never had a problem with Quorn products and have them at least twice a week. Neither, my wife or I or our two children have the least sign of all the signs oif doom that you have invented.

    You should be very careful of publishing something as a fact when you only have anecdotal evidence based on your own (and your son’s) funny stomaches. I suspect your son is more influenced by you than anything he eats.

  48. chloe, UK on

    How fascinating!! I read all these comments. You Americans are SO dramatic!! Do you think Europeans are complete idiots?? We have munching this stiff down for two decades.

    Definately people with larger interests posting here and elsewhere, trying to stir this up in the interest of their own companies etc.

    Sensibility is under-rated!!!

  49. Rose on

    I have an underactive thyroid and felt absolutely awful after eating Quorn. I wouldn’t say I got an allergic reaction but I did try it a couple of times because I didn’t link my symptoms to the first time I tried it. The second time I had it, I woke up fuzzy headed, lethargic, etc so I googled ‘reactions to Quorn’ and saw tons of similar complaints. I can’t eat Soy or Chick Peas either.

    I don’t know whether it should be removed from sale or not but I do know it is rude and ignorant to suggest others are hypochondriacs or hysterical because they have suffered a reaction to it.

  50. Some people may be able to eat Quorn products with no problems but others definitely can not eat this.

    I’m here because my mom became sick last night after eating the Chik’nTenders… within a couple hours of eating it she had severe diarrhea and stomach cramps. Today she is STILL having stomach cramping along with a headache and feeling very weak. She had to call out of work because it is that bad.. She is in bed as I write this. These symptoms fall in line with other reports I have read of people getting sick on this product.

    How is Quorn different from cheese with mold and other fermented products someone asked?

    It must be the reports coming in from people that are having serious allergic reactions to THIS particular fungus Fusarium Venenatum and not to the others mentioned.

    Just judging from all the reports, there seems to be something going on with this particular fungus causing reactions in people.. I do not wish to see people suffer as I have just witnessed and I don’t think many other people wish to either.

    Please report your symptoms to https://www.cspinet.org/cgi-bin/quorn/quorn.cgi

    It is not enough to just post your symptoms here, If enough people report their reactions to this agency who is trying to get a warning label on the product, maybe we can see something positive happen.

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