Australian state offers $98450 reward over strawberries sabotaged with needles

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"The contamination relates to what appears to be sewing needles and pins inserted in strawberries".

These brands are sold in Coles, Woolworths and ALDI across Queensland, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory.

An urgent recall was originally issued on Wednesday following the discovery of needles planted inside the fruit, with Queensland's Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young advising anyone who has purchased strawberries from the Berry Liscious and Berry Obsession brands to dispose of their fruit immediately.

Spiked strawberries have surfaced in Sydney, with a horrified shopper finding needles stuck inside three pieces of the fruit.

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 odd attack on strawberries.

"These further instances are cases in which needles have been found within the strawberries and people have gone to eat them, have cut them up and found the needles". "It is simply unacceptable".

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

Several brands of strawberries have been withdrawn. You've got more chance of winning lotto than being affected'.

Amid the contamination, the Queensland Strawberry Growers Association on Wednesday said they suspected that the culprit was possibly a "disgruntled" former employee.

"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", he said.

Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk told media on Saturday investigators were doing "everything they possibly can" to find those responsible for the tampering, and pleaded with the public to come forward if they knew any information.

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

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