Man who found spike of wood in Sainsbury's ready meal calls for product recall
A Comber man got more than he bargained for after finding a piece of wood in his Sainsbury's ready meal.
Kyle Reid (41), a carer for his mother, bought the meal on Thursday last week from the Bangor Superstore, off Balloo Link.
The Co Down man sat down on Saturday evening to enjoy his Rainbow Vegetable Stew With Basil & Spinach Dumplings from the retailer's vegan range.
He said: "It is a vegan meal, so there is beetroot, bits of kale and other things. The wood was lengthways down, about an inch from the side of the meal.
"I just initially thought it was a piece of vegetable stalk. I picked it out and put it to the side of my plate and didn't think anything of it.
"I was going to put the dishes away and then saw the piece. I picked it up and thought, 'That is not in any way a stalk - it is hard wood'. It was like a piece of kindling and was really sharp at both sides.
"I don't know how wood could have got in it in the first place. It's worrying if it is potentially going in someone else's meal.
"If I had eaten that, it could have been a very different story.
"I had a choking accident when I was a kid and I know it is really serious."
After the discovery, Mr Reid contacted the retailer and was disappointed with the initial lack of response he received. "I phoned them first of all and the line was closed," he said.
"I then filled in the online 'contact us' form. Nobody got back to me at all, not even with an automated response."
Yesterday afternoon Mr Reid received an email advising Sainsbury's was investigating the incident - a process that can take "between four to six weeks".
The company offered to give him a refund for the product and a potential "goodwill gesture".
Mr Reid said he was not looking compensation but was concerned about a wider contamination of the batch.
He added: "I would like them to recall it. That would be the number one thing.
"I would like them to look into that batch and find out how the wood got into it.
"If the range isn't recalled now, there could possibly be another incident.
"I think their food is fantastic, but this has definitely put me off."
Sainsbury's said: "We have apologised to Mr Reid and offered him a full refund.
"Instances like this are extremely rare and we are investigating with our supplier."