Disgruntled ex-employee blamed for sewing needles found in strawberries

Disgruntled ex-employee blamed for sewing needles found in strawberries

All punnets have been recalled.

Police have liaised with retailers to ensure that all stock is removed from sale.

"For other brands, our advice is all strawberries should be cut up before they are eaten", Dr Young said.

"We are working closely with our local and interstate counterparts as the investigation continues and are committed to keeping the public informed as this progresses".

Police in Queensland, where the affected strawberries were grown, believe the contamination is deliberate.

Gane posted the ordeal to Facebook, along with a picture that shows a metal pin poking out of a strawberry.

"Farmers are really nervous about it, obviously, and devastated something as very bad as this would happen to the industry", Ms Rowling said.

Several brands of strawberries have been withdrawn.

The needle found in one strawberry last weekend.

It comes after Queensland Health advised for anyone concerned they may have consumed the contaminated strawberries to contact 13 43 25 84 or speak to their GP immediately.

One man has been taken to hospital for assessment after swallowing a portion of an embedded needle.

ANOTHER case of needles in strawberries has come to light after a woman bought punnets from Wingham Coles in New South Wales.

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A mother of three in Gladstone also found two needles in a punnet while cutting up the fruit.

While the problem first emerged on Sunday, authorities only issued warnings yesterday after two more contamination incidents emerged in Victoria late on Tuesday night.

Only weeks ago, some supermarkets dropped the price of strawberries as low as $1 per punnet to help suppliers move tonnes of excess produce. It was treated as a copycat incident.

Queensland's chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young said strawberries would be back on shelves on Thursday and urged people to throw out any frozen fruit or fruit purchased in the past week.

"Police will eventually come and collect those strawberries and the potential evidence from you".

The association has previously said it believes a disgruntled former farm worker may be responsible, but police say they are investigating all aspects of the strawberry transit process.

Police have been investigating at the Berrylicious and Berry Obsession farms.

Queensland Strawberry Growers industry development officer Jennifer Rowling told Fairfax on Wednesday the industry was reeling this week. "We're not agreeing with that at all at this particular point in time; our investigation is still open", he said.

"We're not going to speculate at this stage".

Charges of malicious acts to cause grievous bodily harm could lead to a prison sentence of 10 years.

You can report information about crime anonymously to Crime Stoppers, a registered charity and community volunteer organisation, by calling 1800 333 000 or via crimestoppersqld.com.au 24hrs per day.

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