Chocolate packaging factory fined $2.5m for falsifying water containers

A chocolate factory in Ontario, Canada, has been fined $1.2 million after it pleaded guilty to falsifying the water containers of water products it packaged in its factory.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) said the factory, Cogent Chocolate Ltd., had falsely labeled water bottles for products such as ice cream, hot chocolate, ice cream sandwiches, coffee and cocoa bars as having “water” in them, and “pure water” in others.

The CFIA said Cogenas subsidiary, the Chocolate Factory Inc., was not responsible for any of the packaging errors and the company agreed to pay the fines.

The agency said in a news release that Cogento’s subsidiary was not required to pay penalties or interest to the CFIA for past violations and had not yet entered into any new agreements.

Cogens subsidiary, in turn, agreed to the penalty and agreed to continue to implement its corrective measures, including a new system that it said would identify, investigate and report any instances where the company has violated food safety laws.

CFIA Director Robert Beechman said in the news release the agency would now look into whether other companies in the chocolate industry had violated food labelling laws or environmental standards.