Depressingly for Lea & Perrins, consumers appear to have tarred all brands of Worcester sauce with the same brush following the Sudan 1 recalls.
According to a survey of 2,000 consumers,conducted for The Grocer by HI Europe, 7% said they would avoid Lea & Perrins sauce in future, even though it did not use the contaminated chilli powder.
This was just 2% less than the number of people avoiding Crosse & Blackwell Worcester sauce - the product found to contain the banned substance.
However, overall anxiety levels were not very high, with half of those polled saying they were not very worried or not worried at all by the scare.
Just 52% of consumers claimed to have checked their cupboards to see if they had any of the affected products, while only 2% had bothered to take products back for a refund. Retailers picked up very little of the blame for the crisis, with less than 10% of consumers holding them responsible. Food manufacturers and ingredients suppliers were largely held responsible, with 58% and 51% respectively of those surveyed citing them as chiefly to blame.
The FSA also came in for a lot of criticism, with 36% of consumers holding it responsible, said HI Europe senior analyst Caroline North.
She said: “Many consumers seem to think that not only should the FSA deal with crises such as this, but that it should have played a greater role in preventing them. Trading Standards were also criticised - probably for the same reason.”
For Lea & Perrins, the episode demonstrated the problems caused by “miscommunication in a crisis”, she added.