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Bakery Called Out for Allegedly Trying to Pass Off Dunkin’ Donuts as Homemade Vegan and Gluten-Free Donuts

A vegan market in New York says the baked goods they ordered came decorated with the chain's signature "D" sprinkles

<p>Getty</p> Stock image of donuts

Getty

Stock image of donuts

The owners of a Long Island, New York-based vegan market are claiming that the donuts they ordered from a local vegan bakery were actually from Dunkin’ — and a state agency is investigating.

The evidence for the accusation? Dunkin's signature "D" sprinkles.

Cindysnacks co-owners John Stengel and Indiana “Cindy” Kay first posted on Instagram on March 3. They said the items they purchased from The Savory Fig were delivered by baker Michelle Siriana on Feb. 23.

“I (John) immediately became concerned as to why this one donut was decorated differently than all the others and in such a strikingly similar way to a recognizable chain,” Stengel wrote on the social media platform.

The accompanying carousel begins with a photo of a donut with a pale pink glaze and orange and magenta sprinkles that appear to be in a “D” shape, similar to those found on Dunkin’s donuts.

“I pulled all of the items delivered out of our racks immediately and stored them in the back out of precaution until I could confirm what was or wasn’t happening here,” Stengel continued.

Related: Dunkin’ Drops New Winter Menu — Including the Return of the Pink Velvet Macchiato

In the next slide, Stengel showed correspondence allegedly between him and Siriana.

"These are definitely not Dunkin' Donuts! If you don't wanna put them out, don't. But they are not Dunkin' Donuts!" reads one text.

In another exchange, Stengel asks to see the container that the "D" sprinkles allegedly came from and a reply reads, "I could send you the picture later. I made a bunch of donuts for someone's birthday."

When Stengel responds that he's seen the same sprinkles at Dunkin', the response says, "I would never do that!"

The following morning, Stengel appears to get a follow-up message that includes an Amazon link and reads, "I'm still out in Montauk visiting my boyfriend. I won't be back till this afternoon. These are the sprinkles that I bought for the kids birthday party."

“I raised my concerns respectfully, hoping a simple explanation with confirming evidence would clear this up,” Stengel wrote. “We (Cindy and I) were not given satisfactory answers nor evidence and in that moment knew deep down how bad this was. Still trying to hold out hope that our trusted fellow vegan small business wasn’t doing something so horrific, we scoured the internet for possible sprinkle dupes that would make it make sense.”

Stengel says they bought the colored sprinkles that Siriana identified as the ones she used, which he claims are not labeled vegan, nor do they match the sprinkles on the donut he received.

The market owners then ordered an at-home gluten test, which they say found that the donut in question contained “substantial amounts” of gluten.

“We can only assume, given this recognizable logo design, where these donuts really came from and what other ingredients they might contain,” Stengel wrote. “We have cut all personal and business ties with this person effective immediately. We are mortified that we provided any of her products to our customers and our own family.”

Neither Cindysnacks’ owners nor Siriana have responded to PEOPLE’s request for comment. The Savory Fig’s Instagram account appears to have been deactivated.

Related: See All of Ben Affleck's Hilarious Dunkin' Commercials (Including His 2024 Super Bowl Ad)

Cindysnacks posted an update on Instagram on March 6 saying the company had contacted the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets’ Division of Food Safety and Inspection, which was launching an investigation into the matter.

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The post also said that Cindysnacks had alerted the Suffolk County Department of Health about what happened and was looking into other avenues to “ensure accountability is met.”

A New York State Department of Agriculture spokesperson told PEOPLE in a statement, "Ensuring the safety and proper labeling of our food supply is a critical function of the Department, which includes overseeing home processors in New York State. The Department has received several complaints regarding this home processing business and is conducting a full investigation."

The spokesperson added that even though Savory Fig is registered as a "home processor," and thus exempt from certain licensing requirements, it still must clearly identify all allergens in products.

PEOPLE also reached out to the Suffolk County Department of Health, and was told that if Cindysnacks filed an official complaint, they would have been referred to New York State Agriculture & Markets, which oversees home processors.

While Cindysnacks said they won’t be issuing further statements on the situation, they explained on Instagram that they shared the initial post with the safety of the vegan community in mind.

“We want to make it clear that we came forward with this information to keep our community of local vegans and those with food allergies safe from future harm,” the post added.

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