SA Health issues recall of Donnybrook strawberries after needles found hidden in fruit
STRAWBERRIES contaminated with hidden needles may be on sale in South Australia and health officials have ordered an urgent recall as more cases emerge interstate.
SA Health has been notified that a brand of strawberries sold in South Australia is linked to the east coast contamination scare where needles have been found in the fruit.
Anyone with Donnybrook strawberries — sold in SA by Coles, Woolworths, IGA and Aldi — should immediately be returned to the place of purchase or discarded.
SA Health’s Acting Director Public Health Services, Dr Chris Lease, said Queensland
Health alerted SA Health to a third brand of contaminated strawberries on Friday afternoon.
“Queensland Health has found that another brand of strawberries, Donnybrook strawberries, is associated with the contamination,” Dr Lease said.
“We have not been notified of any cases of contaminated strawberries in South Australia; however if people have Donnybrook strawberries at home or are unsure of the brand, they should be returned to the place of purchase, or discarded.
“While no other brands of strawberries have been implicated, if consumers are concerned, they should consider chopping them up before consumption.”
SA Health is contacting all known distributors of Donnybrook strawberries to ensure the product is removed from the shelves.
Donnybrook, based in Queensland, is the third brand of strawberries linked to the contamination this week.
“The initial brands affected by the contamination, Berry Licious and Berry Obsession, were not distributed in South Australia,” Dr Lease said.
“We are working to ensure that Donnybrook strawberries are removed from local shelves as quickly as possible.”
The contamination relates to what appears to be sewing needles inserted in strawberries. Queensland Police are investigating the source of the contamination.
If people come across a contaminated strawberry, they should notify SA Police.
Anyone who eats a contaminated strawberry should seek medical attention - for more information see .
Three punnets of Donnybrook strawberries containing sewing needles were found at Redbank Plains, Tweed Heads and Everton Park in Queensland.
Donnybrook operates three farms on the Sunshine Coast but distributes strawberries throughout Australia, including to Coles.
The farms are not related to the farm packaging strawberries under the Berry Licious and Berry Obsession brands which was hit with a needle crisis earlier in the week.
The initial brands affected by the contamination, Berry Licious and Berry Obsession, have already been removed from sale and are no longer in market.
NSW mother Chantal Faugeras posted to Facebook images of strawberries she says she bought from a Coles supermarket on the NSW mid-north coast on Tuesday.
In the post, Ms Faugeras says her 10-year-old discovered a pin embedded in a strawberry while eating a punnet they had bought from the Coles at Wingham.
“We found 3 pins inside 3 strawberries,” Ms Faugeras wrote.
“Please be careful and crush them up before eating or just chuck them out.”
She said the punnets were both Delightful Strawberries branded product. Coles said they had been in contact with Ms Faugeras.
“Coles takes the safety of the food we sell seriously and we are working with our suppliers, police and state health regulators to investigate,” a spokesperson said in a statement.
“The safety of our customers is our priority and anyone concerned about their health should seek medical advice.”
The Queensland Strawberry Growers Association believes a disgruntled farm worker may be responsible but police say they are investigating all aspects of the strawberry transit process.
It’s unclear if Ms Faugeras’ discovery is related to the earlier incidents or a potential copycat.