Ont. grocery store sees 2nd meat tampering incident
Published Friday, October 16, 2009 12:07PM EDT
For the second time this year, a discount grocery store in southwestern Ontario finds itself at the centre of a food tampering investigation.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency, with the help of police, are investigating how a 2.5-centimetre-long needle ended up in a package of pork sausage sold at a No Frills grocery store in Guelph, Ont. -- the second time that the same store has had a problem with tampering in 2009.
Guelph police Const. Kevin McCord said a consumer found the needle in the sausage after frying it up and putting in their mouth.
"As the person began to eat it, they sensed that there was something in the product," McCord told CTV News, when explaining how the tampering incident was discovered.
A release from Guelph police indicates that the sausage was purchased Oct. 11 from the store located at 191 Silvercreek Parkway North.
The sausage is a "Butcher's Choice" product, described as a club pack of uncooked, Honey Garlic Pork Sausage. It had a product code number of #85311, a lot number of #19 8277, a time stamp of 20:15 and a best before date of Oct. 13, 2009.
Police are advising the public to inspect the following Butcher's Choice products for evidence of tampering:
Honey Garlic Pork Sausage; lot number #19 8280 or #19 85205; best before dates of either Oct. 13, 2009 or Oct. 16, 2009
Honey Garlic Pork Sausage; lot number #19 85311 or #19 8277; best before dates of either Oct. 13, 2009 or Oct. 16, 2009
Any member of the public who finds evidence of tampering is asked to call Guelph police Const. Don Conibear at 519-824-1212, ext. 332, or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477. Tips can also be sent in to Crime Stoppers through wwww.crimestoppers-wellington.com.
Management at No Frills has removed all of the affected product from its shelves.
Prior tampering incident
In March, Guelph police arrested a former Maple Leaf Foods employee in connection with a separate investigation into a series of meat packages that had sewing needles inserted into them.
Police then learned of 13 sewing needles that had been inserted into 12 different Schneider's meat product packages that had been sold at the same No Frills location.
No injuries were reported as a result of the tampering.
That investigation saw Maple Leaf Foods yank the affected food products off shelves within a 25-kilometre radius of the store.
The employee, Mastoora Qezil, 42, was later charged with one count of common nuisance in the matter.
Qezil later pleaded guilty to the charge and according to a report in the Guelph Mercury, she is due to be sentenced later this month.
McCord said there is "no indication that the same person is involved" with the current tampering investigation.
With a report from CTV's Nadia Matos