No import of Australian strawberry brands with needle contamination: AVA

Aussies need to dice up their strawberries carefully

"As a precaution, Coles is also withdrawing all brands and sizes of Queensland grown strawberry punnets from sale in Coles Supermarkets in all states (except Western Australia), in Coles Express stores and via Coles online", they said in a statement.

Certain brands have been removed from sale.

Police began looking into the potentially risky berries after a Facebook user on Saturday wrote that their friend took a bite of a strawberry and ate "half a sewing needle", according to the Palm Beach Post.

The needles were discovered in three strawberries in a single punnet, which a customer had bought from Coles in Engadine in Sydney's south.

Some Australians have posted photos on social media showing needles they found in their berries.

Reports out of three Aussie states have strawberry lovers checking their fresh fruit carefully.

One man has been taken to hospital after swallowing fragments and a nine-year-old boy reportedly found a needle while eating a strawberry, but did not swallow it.




The strawberry industry in the state of Queensland is worth around US$93 million (NZ$142 million) annually, and the government there announced this week that it would offer a reward of A$100,000 for anyone with information about the culprit behind the unusual attack on strawberries.

The incidents have been piling up, with contaminated strawberries found with needles purchased at supermarkets in Queensland, NSW and Victoria.

Prices for strawberries dropped to unbelievable lows in the lead-up to the decision by Coles and Aldi.

"This was an earlier comment by the Strawberry Growers Association, it's something we don't subscribe to, we are looking at points of the chain from growth all the way to distribution into the stores, we're keeping a very open mind".

"How could any right-minded person want to put a baby or a child or anybody's health at risk by doing such a terrible act?" she asked.

WA strawberry growers have urged local shoppers not to avoid their produce after sales plummeted and prices crashed because of the sewing needle contamination in Queensland.

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