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Another Strawberry Brand Recalled After Sabotage

17 September, 2018, 12:08 | Author: Shawna Walton
  • Australia strawberry scare NZ stock not affected

On Thursday Queensland police announced they were investigating a suspected copycat incident after a metal rod was discovered on top of strawberries inside a plastic punnet at a Coles in Gatton.

The Queensland Strawberry Growers Association suspects a disgruntled ex-employee is behind the sewing needles found inside strawberries that has sparked a recall across three Australian states.

The complaint spurred an investigation from Queensland authorities, after it was revealed the two contaminated brands were sold in stores in NSW, Queensland, Victoria and the ACT.

'To our current knowledge, two labels, Berry Licious and Berry Obsession are the only affected lines.

On Wednesday, a Queensland woman narrowly avoided feeding contaminated strawberries to her son, posting photos of the fruit online. If you are in doubt of the brand, throw them out.

Police are cautious to point fingers.

Queensland Acting Chief Superintendent Terry Lawrence said on September 12 that the police were in contact with the farm operators and Woolworths representatives, and that they believed that the offender contaminated the stock intentionally.

He wouldn't comment on the QSGA's theory that an angry employee had planted the needles.

"We're not going to go into speculation".

"There is a comment by the QSGA and we will talk to them to see if they have any information to assist us".

"We want everybody to check their strawberries before consuming them ... just cut them up, have a look", Supt Lawrence said.

His friend, Joshua Gane posted the incident to Facebook.

Chantal Faugeras said three needles were found in three strawberries when her 10-year-old child tried to eat them.

"We then checked the other strawberries and found another sewing needle lodged inside one of them".

Van Dorp had to be taken to the emergency room with 'severe abdominal pain'.

Two people in Victoria have also come forward with similar experiences.

"Customers are advised to return these products to their local Woolworths for a full refund", a spokesperson told ABC Australia.

"Woolworths takes food safety very seriously and we are looking into these claims with our supplier", the company wrote.

NSW Police are warning the contamination may have spread beyond the Berry Obsession, Berry Licious and Donnybrook brands confirmed by Queensland Police.

Yes, Queensland Health encourages it.

While the contamination has only impacted two brands, Queensland Chief Health Officer Jeanette Young advised anyone who bought strawberries in Queensland, New South Wales or Victoria since early last week to get rid of them if they were anxious and especially if they were not sure what brand they were.

However, Chief Superintendent Lawrence said the police investigation was ongoing and detectives were examining every part of the supply chain to find the contamination source.

Those strawberries sold after Thursday are said to have been from a later shipment and are safe from the threat.

"Our waste has hit such a crisis today ... it's just devastating", Ms Schultz told her Facebook followers.


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