MONEY customer satisfaction

Car Buyers Haven’t Been This Unhappy In A Decade

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More cars are selling, but the buyers aren't happy.

Even though car sales are up, reaching towards totals not seen since before the credit crisis, all of those new car owners aren’t exactly happy with their purchases.

Owner satisfaction stood at 79 out of 100 points, down 3.7% from last year and the lowest score in a decade. Of the 27 brands tracked American Customer Satisfaction Index Automobile Report, 15 saw their satisfaction rating go down this year, according to NBC News.

A major reason for the drop in customer happiness? Recalls. There were a record 64 million recalls in 2014, led by the huge recall scandal at General Motors. Prices are also up, making it more difficult to meet customer expectations.

Foreign cars did better than American cars, with 77 percent of car models that received above-average satisfaction ratings being imports.

TIME Diet/Nutrition

Cilantro and 3 More Foods to Avoid This Week

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This week cilantro is a no-go

If only food recalls were a rarity. Unfortunately, many foods are pulled from grocery store shelves for some sort of contamination issue (sometimes after you’ve already brought them home). There were several recalls this week, but since not every recall reported by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) makes headlines, we’ve rounded them up for you. If you purchased a product that’s been recalled, you can often return it from where you bought it for a refund.

Cilantro
Brand: various; cilantro from Puebla, Mexico
Contaminated with: Listeria
This one isn’t a grocery store recall, per se, but it’s a revolting food safety issue to know about. Investigators at the FDA are looking into ongoing outbreaks in various U.S. states of cyclosporiasis infections, which is an intestinal illness that’s caused by a microscopic parasite. Fresh cilantro from the state of Puebla, Mexico is suspected to be the source of some of the illnesses, though the investigation is still ongoing. Read the full report, here.

Macadamia nuts
Brand: Izzie Macs!
Contaminated with: Salmonella
Mahina Mele Farm has recalled some products containing macadamia nuts after it was discovered the nuts were contaminated with salmonella. The products include salted, unsalted, wholes and pieces Macadamia nuts, and Nut “Buttah.” Read the full report, here.

Apple Hard Cider
Brand: Angry Orchard
Contaminated with: No contaminants, but the bottles are bursting.
Angry Orchard recalled select cases of their Crisp Apple Hard Cider due to alerts from consumers concerning bottles breaking or overflowing under increased pressure, possibly do to re-fermentation. Read the full report, here.

Whey, casein and colostrum protein products
Brand: Just Be Natural (JBN), Whey Isolates, Earth Superior Whey, Gifted Nutrition, Confidence Isolates, Recovery Fuel, Growtein
Contaminated with: Undeclared milk
Nutrition Resource Services, Inc. is recalling products that contain whey concentrate, whey isolate, casein, and colostrum, because they contain milk which is not included on the product labels. That’s problematic for people who have milk-related allergies. Read the full report, here.

MONEY Autos

Chrysler’s Parent Hit by Recalls and Monster Fine

Millions of Fiat Chrysler vehicles have been recalled for faulty air bags and cyberattack vulnerabilities.

TIME Fiat Chrysler

Jeep Hack: Fiat Recalls 1.4 Million Vehicles For Software Fix

A 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee rolls down the assembly line Wedn
John F. Martin—Bloomberg/Getty Images

Hackers had proved a vulnerability in the popular car's software

Fiat Chrysler automotive will recall roughly 1.4 million vehicles after it was discovered that hackers were able to remotely take control of a Jeep Cherokee SUV through vulnerabilities in its built-in software.

According to a a report in USA Today, Fiat announced the recall under government pressure and will include a software update that will prevent hackers from controlling any of the cars’ functions remotely. Only U.S. vehicles will be affected by the recall.

The vulnerability in the Cherokee’s software was first reported in Wired magazine, which detailed how two software experts were able to manipulate many of the cars functions from miles away. According to Wired, the hacker’s code is
“an automaker’s nightmare . . . that lets hackers send commands through the Jeep’s entertainment system to its dashboard functions, steering, brakes, and transmission, all from a laptop that may be across the country.”

Fiat says that there have been no injuries, as far as it is aware, as a result of the software vulnerability. The recall, according to USA Today, will affect the following models:

  • 2013-2015 Dodge Vipers
  • 2013-2015 Ram 1500, 2500 and 3500 pickups
  • 2013-2015 Ram 3500, 4500, 5500 Chassis Cabs
  • 2014-2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee and Cherokee SUVs
  • 2014-2015 Dodge Durango SUVs
  • 2015 MY Chrysler 200, Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger sedans
  • 2015 Dodge Challenger sports coupes

 

TIME public health

Bottled Water Company Issues Recall Over Possible E. Coli Contamination

The bottled water potentially at risk was produced between June 10 and June 18

A bottled water company has issued a voluntary recall over fears of E. coli contamination.

After traces of E. coli bacteria were found at one of the spring sources for Niagara Bottling LLC, the company has issued a voluntary recall for all 14 of its spring water products that are bottled at two plants in Pennsylvania.

The bottled water potentially at risk for contamination was produced between June 10 and June 18; customers are being urged not to consume those bottles. If consumers must drink the water, it should be boiled first.

E. coli bacteria are typically found in animal and human waste and can cause diarrhea, cramps and nausea. E. coli can be particularly dangerous for the very young, very old, and those with weak immune systems.

According to Niagara, the potentially affected products would have reference codes starting with either “F” or “A” and would have a date between June 10 and 18.

The products under voluntary recall are listed below:

  • Acadia
  • Acme
  • Big Y
  • Best Yet
  • 7-11
  • Niagara
  • Nature’s Place
  • Pricerite
  • Superchill
  • Morning Fresh
  • Shaws
  • Shoprite
  • Western Beef Blue
  • Wegman’s
TIME Transportation

General Motors Says 100 People Have Now Died from Faulty Ignition Switches

Faulty Ignition Switch Repair At A General Motors Dealership
Jeff Kowalsky—Bloomberg/Getty Images Shop foreman John Chapman performs a service recall on a General Motors Co. (GM) 2005 Saturn Ion at Liberty Chevrolet in New Hudson, Michigan, U.S., on Friday, April 25, 2014.

The malfunctioning switches have prompted the recalls of millions of GM vehicles

The death toll from faulty ignition switches in General Motors’ vehicles officially reached 100 this week, putting a grim tally on the long-running saga of the company’s delayed recalls.

The automotive firm’s compensation fund said it had approved the 100th compensation claim resulting from the issue on Monday, the New York Times reported.

This number, according to the Times, is significantly higher than the 13 deaths that GM claimed were the only ones from malfunctioning ignitions on multiple models.

Several lawsuits against the company allege that the actual death toll far exceeds even the latest number, and accuse the company of downplaying the number of deaths in multiple congressional hearings.

“The success of the cover-up for over a decade leaves most of the victims unaccounted for,” Robert Hilliard, one of the lead lawyers, told the Times. “One hundred is not even the tip of the iceberg.”

Read more at the Times

TIME Diet/Nutrition

Easter Egg Cookies and 8 Other Food Recalls This Week

healthiest foods, health food, diet, nutrition, time.com stock, almonds, nuts
Danny Kim for TIME

There were a total of 11 recalls

Every week lots of foods are pulled from grocery shelves for contamination. There were several recalls this week, but since not every recall reported by the Food and Drug Administration makes headlines, we’ve listed them for you. Here’s all the recalls that have happened over the last week.

Easter egg cookies
Brand: Silver Lake
Contaminated with: Undeclared egg
Silver Lake Cookie Company Inc. recalled its name-brand easter egg cookies sold in supermarkets in nine states due to undeclared egg allergen, which is a risk for people who are allergic to eggs.

Mixed Nuts
Brands: Nature’s Place, Ernest Klein and Aurora, and Belmont Market, Boiceville Market, Gaul’s Market, Green Hills Market, Harvest Co-Op Market, Hurley Ridge, Lees, Miles Market, Palmers Market, Union Market, Walter Stewart, Windfall Market and Wild Acorns
Contaminated with: Salmonella
Several companies recalled a variety of nuts due to potential contamination with the bacteria salmonella. Hannaford Supermarkets recalled Nature’s Place brand Roasted Unsalted Mixed Nuts and Nature’s Place Cranberry Mix after discovering walnuts included in the mixes could be contaminated with salmonella. Aurora Products, Inc. recalled products also containing potentially contaminated walnuts, many of which used store-branded labeling.

Cumin
Brand: Maya
Contaminated with: Undeclared peanuts
Maya Overseas Food Inc. recalled seven ounce packages of its cumin powder due to undeclared peanut allergen, which puts people with peanut allergies at risk.

Bran muffins
Brand: Whole Foods Market, southwest
Contaminated with: Undeclared milk and egg
Whole Foods Market is recalling its bran muffin six packs produced and sold in Southwest Region stores due to having undeclared milk and egg allergen, which was discovered during a routine product check. The allergens can cause health problems for people sensitive to milk and eggs.

Dip
Brand: La Terra Fina
Contaminated with: Listeria
La Terra Fina, which had previous spinach-related recalls expanded it’s recall this week to include its Chunky Spinach Artichoke & Parmesan Dip & Spread due to possible listeria contamination.

Sub sandwiches
Brand: GetGo
Contaminated with: Undeclared egg allergen
Select GetGo from Giant Eagle brand individually wrapped Grab-and-Go subs have been recalled due to having undeclared egg allergen, a problem for people allergic to eggs.

Kale pesto hummus
Brand: Hope
Contaminated with: Undeclared walnuts
Hope Foods recalled some of its kale pesto hummus due to having declared walnuts, which can be problematic for people with walnut allergies.

Golden Raisins
Brand: Deer Brand
Contaminated with: Undeclared sulfites
Best Foods Inc. recalled seven ounce packages of its Deer Brand Raisin Golden due to undeclared sulfites. The discovery is problematic for people who are sensitive to the sulfur-based compounds.

Danish pastry, rolls, cheese, pie and fried fish
Brand: Giant Eagle
Contaminated with: Undeclared egg and/or milk allergens
Giant Eagle recalled multiple food items due to undeclared egg and milk allergens, which can put people who are sensitive at risk.

TIME Diet/Nutrition

12 Recalled Foods Not to Eat This Week

Frozen Vegetable Lasagna
FDA Frozen Vegetable Lasagna

There were 17 food recalls in total this week

Every week lots of foods are pulled from grocery shelves for contamination. There were over a dozen recalls just this week, but since not every recall reported by the Food and Drug Administration makes headlines, we’ve listed them for you.

MORE Organic Frozen Foods Recalled Over Listeria Scare

Spinach
Brands: Simply Balanced, La Terra Fina, Cadia, Meijer, Wild Harvest and Wegmans
Contaminated with: Listeria
Several companies had recalls related to listeria-contaminated spinach this week. Simply Balanced and Cadia, Meijer, Wild Harvest and Wegmans brands recalled organic spinach packages. Wegmans had to recall up to 12,540 packages. La Terra Fina recalled spinach artichoke & parmesan dips and organic spinach dip.

Frozen meals
Brands: Amy’s Kitchen
Contaminated with: Listeria
Amy’s Kitchen, the popular frozen organic dinner company, voluntarily recalled over 73,890 cases of products due to possible contamination with listeria. Foods ranged from tofu vegetable lasagna to spinach pizza.

Ice cream
Brands: Blue Bell
Contaminated with: Listeria
The company made headlines earlier in March when five people in a Kansas hospital became ill, and three people died, from consuming Blue Bell ice cream products contaminated with listeria. This week, three flavors of 3 oz. ice cream cups were also recalled for possible contamination with the same bacteria.

Chocolate covered raisins and almonds
Brands: Lindt, Essential Everyday
Contaminated with: Undeclared hazelnuts and undeclared peanut allergen
Lindt recalled some of its 6.4 oz chocolate covered raisin bags and 6.4 oz chocolate covered almond bags for having undeclared hazelnuts. The products were sold in nine Lindt Chocolate Shop locations in the U.S. In addition, Supervalu Inc. recalled Essential Everyday chocolate covered raisins due to the presence of undeclared peanuts. Having undeclared nut allergens in products can be a serious a risk for people with nuts allergies.

Cod filets
Brands: Giant Eagle
Contaminated with: Undeclared soy
Giant Eagle recalled all lots of its name-brand Japanese Breaded Cod Fillets due to having undeclared soy, which is a risk for people who have soy allergies.

Paninis
Brands: Giant Eagle
Contaminated with: Undeclared egg
Giant Eagle recalled all lots of its name-brand Little Italy Paninis sold in its supermarkets due to having undeclared egg allergen, which is a risk for people with egg allergies.

Frozen Ravioli
Brands: Rising Moon Organics
Contaminated with: Listeria
Carmel Food Group recalled some of its Rising Moon Organics frozen ravioli items after it was discovered spinach from its supplier was contaminated with the bacteria listeria.

Walnuts
Brands: Aurora, Martin Food Products, Stop&Shop, Giant Carlisle Food Store, Giant of Maryland, Whole Foods Market
Contaminated with: Salmonella
Aurora Products, Inc. recalled its Natural Walnuts and Trail Mixes Containing Walnuts sold through the above retailers due to possible contamination with the bacteria salmonella.

Macadamia nuts
Brands: Nature’s Eats
Contaminated with: Salmonella
Texas Star Nut and Food Co. Inc. recalled Nature’s Eats macadamia nuts due to the detection of salmonella.

Kale and quinoa salad
Brands: Wawa
Contaminated with: Undeclared soy
Taylor Farms Florida Inc. recalled some of its Wawa brand Kale and Quinoa Salad due to undeclared soy in the dressing packet in the salad which could put people with soy allergies at risk.

Cookies
Brands: Giant Eagle
Contaminated with: Undeclared milk
Giant Eagle is recalling its Raisin Filled and Apricot Filled cookies which are sold in its supermarkets due to having undisclosed milk allergen, a risk for people with milk allergies.

O’Coconut products
Brands: Nutiva
Contaminated with:
Salmonella
Organic company, Nutiva, recalled O’Coconut products after learning they may be contaminated with salmonella.

Read next: Here’s the Terrifying Truth About Metal Shards in Your Food

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TIME Diet/Nutrition

6 Foods Not to Eat This Week

Cadbury Accepts Kraft's Raised 11.9 ($19.7) Billion Pound Offer
Tim Boyle—Bloomberg/Getty Images

It's not every day you find out your favorite dinner might contain metal

Every week, you stock your fridge and pantry with the best of intentions: to cook more food at home. But every week, many foods are yanked off supermarket shelves—sometimes after you’ve already brought them home. This was a big week in headline-making food recalls but since not every recall reported by the Food and Drug Administration catches consumers’ attention, we decided to list them.

Company: Frontier Co-op
Product: Frontier/Simply Organic products manufactured with garlic powder.
Reason: Salmonella.

Frontier Co-op voluntarily pulled its products made with an organic garlic powder due to possible Salmonella contamination. The 39 affected product lines, like Ranch Mix Dressing and Fish Taco Seasoning, are sold under Frontier and Simply Organic brands. Though no illnesses have been reported yet, some of the product tested positive for the bacteria. Here’s the full report.

Company: Kraft Foods Group
Product: Original flavor of Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Dinner.
Reason: Small pieces of metal.

Kraft announced a voluntary recall of around 242,000 cases of its mac and cheese dinners due to the possibility that the packages have small pieces of metal inside. Ouch. The company has received eight complaints from consumers. Here’s the full report.

Company: Trader Joe’s Company
Product: Raw walnuts.
Reason: Salmonella.

Trader Joe’s announced Tuesday that it is voluntarily recalling several of its brand-name raw walnuts due to potential Salmonella contamination. Here’s the full report.

Company: Vitamin Cottage Natural Food Markets, Inc.
Product: Natural Grocers brand Organic Garlic Powder.
Reason: Salmonella.

Some of the company’s organic garlic powder was recalled after product from a supplier tested positive for the bacteria. The recall was expanded on Thursday. Here’s the most recent report.

Company: First Source, LLC
Product: Wegmans Organic Walnut Halves & Pieces
Reason: Salmonella.

No illnesses have been reported, but the company recalled the walnuts after salmonella was identified in specific grower lots. The walnut tubs were distributed in Wegmans’ 85 locations in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland, and Massachusetts. They were sold between January 27 and March 17, 2015. Here’s the full report.

Company: Giant Eagle
Product: Seasonal Cut Out Cookies
Reason:
Undeclared milk content.

The company recalled lots of its Giant Eagle brand seasonal cut-out cookies (holiday themed) due to the presence of undeclared milk—an allergen—in the cookies. The cookies pose a serious risk for people who have milk-related allergies. Giant Eagle discovered the problem after customers complained about getting sick after eating the cookies. Here’s the full report.

TIME Food Safety

Here’s the Terrifying Truth About Metal Shards in Your Food

Inexpensive food from an industrialized food system has its downsides

Kraft Foods is recalling 242,000 cases of its Macaroni & Cheese product because “metal shards” have been found in some boxes. The recall is getting lots of attention both because of the size of the recall and because the product is so popular. But contamination of food with foreign objects, and metal pieces in particular, happens more often than you might think.

In January, Unibright Foods recalled about 50,000 pounds of prepared meat products that were shipped to seven U.S. states after it was discovered that packages might contain what the Department of Agriculture called “extraneous metal materials.” A restaurant in Illinois discovered a piece of stainless steel wire in one of the sukiyaki beef products.

Last June, Wegmans recalled 6,000 bags of ice sold in its stores across the northeast over a period of more than five months that contained metal pieces from a broken machine part. In that case, contaminated bags of ice were discovered by the company itself, and no shards were found in ice that was actually sold.

In 2012, metal pieces in private-label products made by Bay Valley Foods, resulted in a recall of 74,000 cases of boxed pasta mix products, including macaroni and cheese.

That same year, Kellogg recalled 2.8 million boxes of Bite Size Frosted and Unfrosted Mini-Wheats when “due to the possible presence of fragments of flexible metal mesh from a faulty manufacturing part.” The boxes were distributed across the country.

And those are just a few of the cases of metal contamination over the past few years. Nobody knows exactly how often that particular problem occurs. But while food recalls involving disease-causing agents like E. coli and salmonella get the most attention, recalls due to the contamination of foreign objects are far from rare.

It’s perhaps not so surprising that metal pieces end up in food products, given our industrialized food system. When a piece of machinery breaks off in an electronics factory or an automotive plant, that’s a problem. When it happens in the food chain, that’s downright dangerous, though apparently few deaths or serious injuries have been reported from such contamination.

Some companies are taking steps to reduce the problem, including some highly sophisticated ones like ultrasound and nuclear magnetic resonance techniques. Production lines have been reconfigured and redesigned to minimize the number of parts that have metal moving against metal. |

But as long as we want a the wide variety of inexpensive food we get from our industrialized food system, the hazards of metal and other foreign objects making their way into our food supply will remain.

Read next: How Kraft’s Mac and Cheese Recall Will Affect Its Stock Price

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