So I always assumed Ghirardelli was off limits until I went to one of their stores in Pleasant Prairie, WI, where one of the sales ladies told me they went peanut free in 2013. And I've had their chocolate without a problem a few times since then, but curiosity got the best of me and I did a little research online. I found this website that said everything was made in a facility that uses peanuts and some chocolates, which I have had recently and checked the labels, we're made on the same equipment. This upset me, but I was confident that the information was just outdated so I emailed Ghirardelli (they responded within a few hours too!) and here say my response:
"Thank you for contacting Ghirardelli Chocolate. Ghirardelli products do not contain peanuts as an ingredient. If peanuts are used on the same equipment, products bear "May contain peanuts." Ghirardelli currently manufactures products containing the following tree nuts: almonds, coconut and hazelnuts; all the Bars and Squares made in the facility share equipment with products containing these tree nuts.
The chocolate chips (60% Bittersweet, Semi-Sweet, Mini Semi-Sweet, Double Chocolate and Milk Chocolate) do not contain tree nuts or peanuts; moreover, the chocolate chips line does not make products containing tree nuts or peanuts. The Classic White Chips are produced in a facility and on equipment that makes products containing peanuts and tree nuts."
In my opinion as long as you're only PA Ghirardelli is completely safe--just stay away from some of their baking products.
By smithdcrk on Dec 23, 2014
Ghiradelli labels are by facility. IF there is cross contact they label, so always double check.
By tired dad on Dec 30, 2014
I'm new to the site and this is my first post, so you'll excuse me if I have not internalized board etiquette of the operating definitions of "peanut free" or " safe" on this site. Regarding the Ghirardelli post, I think it is safe to assume that the chocolate chips are NOT made in a nut free factory, if they were I doubt it would say "the chocolate chips LINE (my caps) does not make products containing tree nuts or peanuts."
Given that, I disagree strongly with the sentiment "as long as you're only PA Ghirardelli is completely safe". Unless they are doing allergen testing, this means they don't *THINK* there is cross contamination. There are no absolute guarantees, but if someone in the factory makes a mistake and there is possible cross contamination, how to they decide? They just can't just make new packaging, so if they think there is cross contamination that would have to throw out that batch and lose all that $$$. I don't trust companies that are not nut fee (and ghirardelli is NOT nut free) to do that. There are levels of confidence and safety, but "completely safe" with food products made in the same factory as other products that contain nuts? I don't think you can accurately call that "completely safe".