STRAWBERRY CRISIS: NSW Mum Finds Needles In Punnet Purchased At Local Coles

STRAWBERRY CRISIS: NSW Mum Finds Needles In Punnet Purchased At Local Coles

STRAWBERRY CRISIS: NSW Mum Finds Needles In Punnet Purchased At Local Coles

A Queensland man posted this photo of a strawberry with a needle in it after reporting his friend swallowed one.

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.

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.

Back in New Zealand, Foodstuff external relations manager Sue Hamilton says ahead of the New Zealand strawberry season kicking off, New World, PAK'nSAVE and Four Square stores are stocking some Australian strawberries.

In a follow-up statement released on Facebook Thursday, the group said the strawberries were seemingly "interfered with between the time they were packed and the time they were purchased".

Chantal Faugeras posted on Facebook that she purchased the punnet from Wingham Coles on Wednesday, with three needles found inside three strawberries.

She said that with the affected products having been taken off the shelves, the public can now feel safe eating strawberries, adding that the incidents.

Coles said they had been in contact with Ms Faugeras.

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

Already struggling with low prices, strawberry growers are imploring customers to keep buying their fruit after sewing needles were discovered in punnets.

She said that people can "chop them in half" if they remained concerned about the presence of needles.

The strawberries believed to have contained the needle that injured Hoani Hearne was reportedly sold at a supermarket in Brisbane.

Chief Superintendent Lawrence says thankfully no one has been harmed, as all the reports have come from people who have found the pins and needles after cutting the strawberries prior to consumption.

Queensland chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young said the contaminated brands came from a farm in south-east Queensland, and were sold to Woolworths, but could also have been distributed to other stores.

"If you have Donnybrook strawberries at home, or are unsure of the brand, you should return them to the store or throw them away".

Authorities are claiming a disgruntled ex-employee is responsible for inserting sewing needles into strawberries.

A young boy in Gladstone ended up with a needle in his mouth on Tuesday after taking strawberries to school.

"They are also contacting the supplier, the police and health and safety", Gane stated.

The Queensland Strawberry Growers Association suspects a former staff member is behind the contamination.

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