A pregnant 31-year-old woman, her 24-year-old boyfriend, and her two young children reported becoming ill after cooking and eating meat purchased at a Tampa, Florida, Walmart. Officials tested the meat and found it was contaminated with the hallucinogenic drug LSD.
The man and the children were treated at a nearby hospital and released. The woman gave birth at the hospital; she and her baby boy are recovering.
Dianna Gee, head of media relations for Walmart, told FoodProductionDaily the retailer is greatly troubled about the incident and is investigating the source of the contamination.
“We know our customers expect safe, quality food, and we require our suppliers to meet the highest of food safety standards. she said. “We want answers and we’re committed to working with officials to get to the bottom of this.”
Gee said that at the early stages of the investigation, police, Walmart, and Cargill Meat Solutions are not yet clear where and how the food was tampered with. Officals are not yet certain where or how the food was tampered with, or if it was tampered with after purchase; however, the retailer is pulling all product from the store as a precaution.
According to Gee, neither Walmart nor Cargill have received reports of any similar incidents. She added store personnel are reviewing surveillance video to check for suspicious activity, but none has yet been detected.
Michael Martin, director of communications for Cargill, told FPD the meat processor was contacted by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) as a “routine follow-up” in their investigation, and Cargill is cooperating with the search.
“We are happy to know the family involved is doing well,” he added.