Rodents in rum a rare thing
WHILE the story of a dead mouse allegedly found in a can of Bundaberg Rum and Cola reported in the Northern Star yesterday turned stomachs across the Northern Rivers, the NSW Food Authority said such incidents were few and far between.
Of the complaints forwarded to the authority by local councils, which share responsibility for investigating these sorts of claims, 12% related to “foreign matter” found in purchased food or drinks – none were found to be valid complaints.
The Northern Star reported yesterday that Casino mother-of-four Linda Foster drank the can of Bundaberg rum only to find a mouse in the bottom of the can.
“Straight away I vomited – it was disgusting, absolutely revolting,” she said.
The company which produces the drink said it was committed to the highest quality standards and would fully investigate the “isolated complaint”.
If indeed a mouse was found in the can and entered during the processing or manufacturing stage it would fall under the jurisdiction of the NSW Food Authority.
However, as Bundaberg Rum is manufactured in Queensland, it would fall into the jurisdiction of that state, regardless of the fact it was sold and consumed in Casino.
Either way, a spokesperson for the NSW Food Authority urged Ms Forster to lodge a formal complaint.
“For this particular matter, it is imperative that the person register a formal complaint with the authority or her local council to ensure the matter is fully and correctly investigated,” the spokesperson said.
Under the Food Regulation Partnership local councils are responsible for inspecting food outlets and investigating complaints.
Last financial year, 4517 complaints were lodged with councils across NSW, an increase of 398 from the previous 12 months. Of these 98.8% were investigated by the respective council. The remaining complaints were referred to the NSW Food Authority and NSW Fair Trading.