Instant Pot Meltdown? Company Warns That Some Devices Are Overheating
The Instant Pot, a brand of electric multi-cookers, has in recent months become a viral cooking phenomenon, with The New York Times going as far as to say the kitchen gadget has “spawned a religion” among its foodie devotees. Indeed, the Instant Pot ranked among the most-bought items at Amazon.com, Target, and Kohl’s this past Black Friday.
But the cooking craze is showing at least one crack as the Ottawa-based company announced on Facebook earlier this week that one of its models was “overheating resulting in localized melting damage to the underside of the product.”
Instant Pot identified the Gem 65 8-in-1 Multicooker as the culprit and warned customers who owned the cookers with affected batchcodes to “immediately stop use of the product.”
“We want you to know that we take any problem with our products extremely seriously as safety and quality are our primary concern, and we are working cooperatively with the US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC),” the company said.
In its Facebook post, Instant Pot said it would provide customers with “update information and next steps” regarding the potentially defective cooker “within the next few weeks.” The company provided Fortune with the same message when asked for comment on the situation.
In an additional message to customers, Instant Pot said owners of the Gem multicooker “will soon receive instructions on how to receive a free replacement.”
The CPSC declined to comment to Fortune.
The CPSC is responsible for protecting the American public from “unreasonable risks of injury or death” from consumer products and is the body that issues product recalls.
Instant Pot’s warning comes after popular NBC show This Is Us prompted questions about the safety of Instant Pot’s kitchen cousin, the Crock-Pot. In January, the show revealed that a main character died due to a slow cooker malfunction, which caused Crock-Pot to go on the offensive and reassure current users that its devices “exceed all internal testing protocols and all applicable industry safety standards and regulations as verified by independent third-party testing labs.”
Instant Pot’s hiccup has come amid hot sales for multicookers. Market research firm The NPD Group reported that even before the holiday season, sales in the 12 months ending in November 2017 had surged to $300 million, an increase of 79%.