Mom says she found live rat hanging out in sealed bag of fruit
Originally sourced from New York Post
"A mother of two claims she was horrified to find a live rat trapped inside a sealed package of plums.
Salma Riaz, 32, and her husband, Kamran, bought the bag of fruit at Aldi, a discount supermarket chain, but failed to spot the rodent curled up in the plastic container, covered with netting.
However, seven hours later they heard scratching and rustling and discovered the pest.
Salma said she was left “baffled and shocked” and a video shows the tiny frightened animal blinking from inside the sealed package.
In emails to Salma, Aldi’s serious complaints team said that packages of plums are all hand-picked in Italy, before being placed into the netting machine. After the packages have been wrapped they are all individually weighed before being boxed by hand ahead of shipping.
A city council investigation in Rochdale, a small town in England, is still ongoing but they disclosed that pest control visited the store and found no issues with the store as well as the store not receiving any other complaints of a similar nature.
Salma, a stay-at-home mom, said: “I went into the kitchen in the middle of the night and I could hear a rummaging noise.”
“I couldn’t see anything but I knew it was coming from the area where the fruit bowl is so I shouted for my husband.”
“He came down and couldn’t see anything either and it was only when he was stood looking in the direction of the fruit bowl that he saw the rat’s eyes.”
“As soon as we discovered it, I said, ‘did the bag not seem heavier or was it not moving inside?'”
“He said it must have been wedged in so tight it could not move.”
“The fact it was still alive is very worrying to me and confusing. I just couldn’t understand how it could still be alive trapped how it was.”
“I was shaken up. All sorts of things were going through my mind at the time like what would have happened if my daughter had gone for fruit in the morning and found it, she would have been petrified.”
Salma and her husband bought the fruit at Aldi in Rochdale on December 13.
Kamran grabbed the bag of plums from the back off the shelf because he believed they would be the freshest.
The couple took the fruit – and the live rat – back to the store the next day.
Salma said she left the rat with the manager at the Aldi store, who seemed “shocked” and left the rat at the store’s warehouse.
Unimpressed by the store’s response, Salma contacted Rochdale’s city council desperate for answers on how the rat had ended up concealed inside the packaging.
Salma, who prides herself on her immaculate apartment, was left so shaken by the discovery she refused to go into the kitchen for three days.
She said: “Even though I knew the rat had been removed, psychologically it made me uneasy, I felt itchy and was shook.”
After receiving the reports from both Aldi and the council, Salma believes the rat had frozen during transportation.
As Aldi’s email stated, the plums had been stored at minus temperatures during a three-day transit from Italy to the UK and thawed inside the house.
Salma decided to speak about her experience after reading about a customer discovering half a rat inside a bag of frozen vegetables, at the start of February from another branch of Aldi.
She said: “When I read what had happened, I realized that this is obviously not a one-off situation like I was led to believe.”
“There is a rodent problem somewhere in the system despite pest control not finding anything.”"