Dancer's life cut short by 'undeclared peanuts' in Stew Leonard’s Cookie: A recall and a Family's heartbreak
On January 11th, Órla Baxendale, aged 25, enjoyed some Florentine vanilla cookies from Stew Leonard’s,” said her family. Regrettably, the cookies led to a severe allergic reaction that swiftly escalated into anaphylactic shock from which the New York-based dancer could not recover.
Tragic death due to undisclosed allergens in cookies
Marijo Adimey, the attorney representing the grieving family, stated in a declaration that Baxendale's death "occurred due to the unfortunate circumstance of consuming a cookie sold by Stew Leonard’s, which harbored undisclosed peanuts."
The cookies had undisclosed peanuts, to which the late 25-year-old had a severe allergy. Regrettably, the sweets manufacturer failed to provide this vital information on the cookie packaging.
In response to this tragic oversight, Stew Leonard’s has recalled batches of Florentine vanilla cookies sold from November 6th to December 31st, 2023. The CEO of Stew Leonard expressed profound sympathy for Baxendale's family's loss, emphasizing the profound personal impact this tragedy has had on him.
He also shared that the Long Island bakery that supplied the cookies did not notify him about changes to the ingredients, resulting in this devastating incident.
“My family and I are devastated and very saddened by this unfortunate event. As a father of four daughters, one of whom is about 20 years old, I can only begin to comprehend how the bereaved family is feeling — Leonard Jr. told the New York Post.
Cookies United, the supplier bakery, maintains that it had informed Stew Leonard about changes to the ingredient list several months before the tragic incident. According to them, the first notification was in the summer of 2023, and they claim to have dispatched the cookies in correctly labeled packaging.