Strawberry needle scare spreads to #Perth & WA as growers suspect a vendetta against the industry

A West Australian strawberry grower says the person responsible for putting sewing needles into punnets must have a vendetta against the industry as the contamination scare spreads nationwide.

Key points:

  • Several cases of sewing needles and pins have been found in strawberry punnets
  • The contamination scare has spread to Tasmania, Queensland, NSW and SA
  • Growers are being forced to dump stock as consumers shun the fruit

The WA Department of Health has warned consumers to check strawberries before eating them, after a needle was found in a punnet of Mal’s Black Label strawberries.

The punnet was purchased from a supermarket in the Adelaide Hills, and it follows several reports of strawberries contaminated by needles on the east coast of Australia.

Mal’s Black Label strawberries are grown and packed in Gingin, 70 kilometres north of Perth.

A company spokesman said he believed there was no way the needle could have got into the punnet at the farm, which has been operating for a long time without incident.

Wanneroo-based strawberry grower Tony Holl said he did not think the Mal’s Black Label punnet was contaminated in WA.

“Somebody’s got a real vendetta, or it’s a terrorism act,” he said on ABC Radio Perth.

Source: Strawberry needle scare spreads to WA as growers suspect a vendetta against the industry – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)