Ice contamination is a serious public health concern. Source water contamination, contaminated ice machines, unsanitized ice scoops, and cross contamination in the handling process are leading causes of packaged ice contamination.
That's why consumers should buy ice that meets the high standards of the IPIA - the only way you can be assured the ice you are buying is safe to consume.
Consumer alert: Concerning Levels of Fecal Bacteria Found on Ice Cubes at Starbucks.
Business Insider: Recent lab tests found "concerning levels" of fecal bacteria in ice cubes at three well-known coffee chains in Manchester, U.K., including Starbucks, Caffe Nero, and Costa. In an investigation conducted by BBC One's consumer watchdog series "Watchdog," the samples tested positive for fecal coli-forms, which are known to contain pathogens that could cause serious illness. “The bacteria found are opportunistic pathogens - the source of human disease," said Tony Lewis of the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health. "These should not be present at any level - never mind the significant numbers found.” Ice contamination remains a serious public health concern, and consumers must be aware of the ice they are buying and consuming.
Look for the Label: What Consumers Need to Know
The only way to completely protect your family against this risk of contaminated ice is to make sure you are buying packaged ice manufactured by a member of the IPIA. Consumers can look for the IPIA logo when purchasing packaged ice in member branded packaging and a growing number of retail private label packaging.
The IPIA label is the only way consumers can be assured the ice they are buying is safe to consume. The University of Cal Poly and University of Georgie have conducted studies to compare ice produced and packaged by outside vending machines and on-premises retail establishments to ice produced by manufacturing companies that conform to quality manufacturing standards set by the IPIA. The results clearly show that consumers need to be conscious of the ice they are buying for themselves and their families.
Research Findings: Scientists Find Contamination in Ice Which is Not Produced to Industry Standards
The latest and most comprehensive study to ever look at the safety of packaged ice has been published in California. The study compared packaged ice produced by members of the International Packaged Ice Association to those who manufacture ice without the industry-leading IPIA standards. This study definitively shows that consumers are at risk due to the amount of packaged ice produced by non-IPIA retailers in California that was found to have unsatisfactory levels of contamination.