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I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) about this issue and received the following response:

No, one cannot assume that these products are DE, as some companies are not concerned about allergen and will not write a dairy warning. They may still contain actual dairy. [emphasis mine]

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time [late 2012], most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!

I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) about this issue and received the following response:

No, one cannot assume that these products are DE, as some companies are not concerned about allergen and will not write a dairy warning. They may still contain actual dairy.

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time [late 2012], most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!

I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) about this issue and received the following response:

No, one cannot assume that these products are DE, as some companies are not concerned about allergen and will not write a dairy warning. They may still contain actual dairy. [emphasis mine]

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time [late 2012], most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!

2 added 17 characters in body
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I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) last year about this issue and received the following response (excerpted from a longer email):

No, one cannot assume that these products are DE, as some companies are not concerned about allergen and will not write a dairy warning. They may still contain actual dairy.

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I assume that this holds even if the product doesn't have an allergen warning, but I'll send another email to them to ask about that.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time [late 2012], most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!

I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) last year about this issue and received the following response (excerpted from a longer email):

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I assume that this holds even if the product doesn't have an allergen warning, but I'll send another email to them to ask about that.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time, most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!

I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) about this issue and received the following response:

No, one cannot assume that these products are DE, as some companies are not concerned about allergen and will not write a dairy warning. They may still contain actual dairy.

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time [late 2012], most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!

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source | link

I sent an email to the OU (kosherq@ou.org) last year about this issue and received the following response (excerpted from a longer email):

If a product lists dairy ingredients on the ingredient panel, it is obviously dairy. Some common dairy ingredients are Milk, Yogurt, Cheese, Cream, Butter, Whey, Lactose, Casein, and Caseinate. However, a product may contain a dairy ingredient that is not listed on the ingredient panel such as those present in the product’s unspecified ingredient ‘flavors’. Due to these concerns it is not entirely possible to determine the dairy status of a product based solely on the listed ingredients.

I assume that this holds even if the product doesn't have an allergen warning, but I'll send another email to them to ask about that.

I also asked about Oreos specifically, and was told that:

At the present time, most varieties of Oreo Cookies contain dairy ingredients, with two notable exceptions. Original Oreo Sandwich Cookie and Oreo Double Stuf Sandwich Cookie do not contain dairy ingredients, though they are manufactured on dairy equipment.

Please note that it is possible that the manufacturer will reformulate this product and add a true dairy ingredient. You will not be able to know this, since the OUD kosher symbol will remain the same. We recommend that you call our office every 3 months to reconfirm the DE status of this product.

I highly doubt very many people contact the OU every 3 months to ask about Oreos!