A gravy sold in Lidl stores has been recalled after it was found to contain a harmful chemical found in paint thinner. Two batches of Kania Gravy Granules were discovered to have been contaminated with xylene which is also found in petroleum and crude oil.

The German discount supermarket said they were taking the matter "very seriously" and issued a notice warning customers not to consume the product and to return it for a full refund.

A recall notice has been posted on Lidl stores across the country reading: "Lidl UK is recalling Kania Gravy Granules, Meat and Chicken, 300g, Best Before Date October 2017 and November 2017 only."

An alert from the FSA confirmed that exposure to xylene in food products posed a significant health risk causing symptoms such as irritation to the mouth, throat, nose and lungs and in severe cases can lead to heart problems. In extreme cases it can cause liver and kidney damage and coma Sky News reports.

The Food Standards Agency website stated: "Exposure to xylene in food products represents a health risk as it can cause adverse effects such as headache, dizziness, nausea and vomiting.

"The contaminant levels in this [gravy granules] product exceed those set to minimise this risk and the product is therefore being recalled as a precaution," the FSA added.

A spokeswoman for Lidl said: "We were very sorry to hear of this matter and can confirm that an investigation was launched as soon as we were made aware. We are taking the issue very seriously and are working closely with our supplier to identify the cause."

No other Kania products are affected, BBC News reports. Lidl is working with its supplier to identify the cause of the contamination.

In April this year, Lidl recalled Nixe branded canned herring products on Saturday, 30 April, because they may include fish.