Woolworths have withdrawn sewing needles from its shelves nationally following the fruit tampering crisis.

“We’ve taken the precautionary step of temporarily removing sewing needles from sale in our stores. The safety of our customers is our top priority,” a Woolworths spokeswoman told AAP.

Coles said it had no plans to pull sewing needles from its shelves, saying it was instead focused on thoroughly inspecting strawberries before they arrived at the nation’s supermarkets.

“We have worked with our suppliers to implement additional control measures to ensure strawberries are inspected before they are sent to supermarkets. Queensland Health has advised people should cut up strawberries before consuming them,” a Coles spokeswoman told news.com.au.

More than 100 reports of tampered fruit are being investigated by police across the country, many of which are thought to be fake or copycat cases.

A 12 year old has been arrested after admitting they put a needle in their strawberry at school as a prank. (Read more)

strawberry 1

Further cases of sabotage

The latest news in three new cases have been reported, including one in Newcastle involving a needle in a banana which was packed in a child’s lunchbox, and two more strawberry contamination reports in Tasmania. Also more apples were found in Tasmania to contain needles.

We will continue to update as the incidents unfold.

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  • Such a terrible to have happened in the first place – now if everyone uses some common sense there would be no need to pull all the strawberries off the shelves.


  • Can’t they just scan the strawberries? Surely that’s cheaper than all this loss of produce and income from tampering.


  • I wish they find these people that are doing this and put them away


  • Sad that it has to come to this.


  • Better to be safe than sorry, I guess. Bad luck to anyone visiting the supermarket who actually needs sewing needles.


  • It’s sad that it is needed. Better safe then sorry. Hopefully it’s temporary


  • I do not think this is a good move. Where does it end?


  • I think this is a not the right move


  • Don’t think that will stop it unless the tampering is happening in store.

    • I agree and then surely there would be video surveillance?


  • I think this is an excellent move by Woolworths, maybe they can sell them with the cigarettes,keep them under the counter. What about security cameras are they not picking up on people doing this?


  • Customers may be stealing off the shelves and tampering with/contaminating strawberries and possibly other fruit.


  • Probably a good idea just in case.


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