Every cake mix I've ever used has those little bits in them and I ALWAYS sift them out. They're not appetizing, but considering the process cake mixes go through before they're packaged, I'm sure they're harmless.
It would be impossible to eliminate these in the manufacturing process. Product is always going to build up on the sides of equipment.
I'm a long time sifter, but that being said, doesn't it strike anyone as odd that the woman on the other end of the conversation knew EXACTLY what those lumps were and where they came from?? Why isn't BC doing the sifting at the factory if this is such a common problem?
I wonder what else is falling into different BC products from other machines ..ICK!!!!
To me, this means that they need to be more diligent about cleaning their equipment. It is gross. I did find it in the next 3 mixes I have used as well, but sifted it out. They were the same manufacturing date, interesting to know that others have found this all the time in BC.
I always just whisked to get out lumps and never noticed any hard bits in the batter or in a finished cake. These were definitely prominent enough at the bottom of my bowl, there was no way not to notice them.