People all over Australia have been discovering tiny sewing needles in store-bought strawberries

People all over Australia have been discovering tiny sewing needles in store-bought strawberries

Every now and again, you hear horror stories on the news, seemingly designed to make people freak about nationwide panics that are overblown at best, and completely made up at worse.

Remember those rumours about rainbow parties, or about how there were people out there sneaking razorblades in children's candy on Halloween? Those were the kind of urban myths that are enough to send any suburban mom into a frenzy, but in reality, you have absolutely nothing to worry about. Your children are not in danger.

It seems a bit cynical (though I wouldn't say unexpected) for the news cycle to drum up new panics for the sake of getting us all riled up and sharing the stories with our most cherished and beloved, but sometimes, as this broadcast from out in Australia shows, one or two of those urban panics might actually be rooted in a fair bit of truth.

Over the past couple of weeks or so, at least 11 people across all six states of Australia have brought home a pack of store-bought strawberries, only to realise just in time that there were some very sharp needles in there, threatening to turn a light, fruity snack into a rather concerning trip to the hospital.

Indeed, that's where at least two Australian men have wound up after eating the contaminated fruit in question, heading to the emergency room after complaining of abdominal pain, later revealed to be some sewing needles in their fruit. Scary stuff.

The Australian public were first alerted to this panic by Joshua Gane, who wrote a lengthy post on Facebook explaining how his friend, Hoani van Dorp, ended up being one of the three people to be sent to hospital over this worrying crisis, sharing pictures that show just how hard it is to spot these strawberries with the naked eye.

"Driving up to the coast when Hoani van Dorp bites through a strawberry and swallows half a sewing needle," he began on Facebook.

"We then checked the other strawberries and found another sewing needle lodged inside one of them. We are now at the ER because he subsequently started experiencing severe abdominal pain. Just being a helpful member of the community and making sure your children don’t have to endure what we have had to experience today. Please make your family and friends aware."

In the post, Gane also revealed that his friend had gotten in touch with the grocery store in question - believed to be Woolworths - over the contaminated fruit. They've issued a total recall of the fruits, believing the needles to be an issue not of human error, but of foul play.

Whether the culprit is the supplier, a disgruntled customer or someone at the Woolworths itself remains to be seen, but in any case, the Queensland state government has offered a A$100,000 (£55,000; $72,000) reward for anyone who can help them crack the case.