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Singapore Food Agency says no lapses were detected at Garrett Popcorn store after customer allegedly bit into rusty metal screw

The SFA said that they were classifying it as an isolated incident with a recommendation that proper food preparation practices be put in place with good hygiene

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The Singapore Food Agency (SFA) has said that it found no lapses when it inspected a Garrett Popcorn outlet, after receiving a complaint that a customer bit into a rusty metal screw while indulging in gourmet popcorn he bought from an outlet at Raffles City.

On 13 Sept, Facebook user Adeline Toh expressed concern over quality control and food safety with the snacks sold by Garrett Popcorn after her husband allegedly bit into a rusty metal screw while enjoying his popcorn. According to the photos of a receipt and doctor’s note she shared on social media, the incident occurred at the beginning of August.

Sharing a picture of a metal screw in the palm of a hand, Ms Toh wrote: “look what my husband found while indulging in his gourmet popcorn snack from Garrett – A METAL SCREW! We had gone to the new Garrett Popcorn store at Raffles City and bought a mix of cheese and macadamia caramel corn.

“While my husband was biting into a big piece of the caramel popcorn, he bit down on something hard. Thinking at first that it was just an unpopped kernel, he finally spit it out and we were horrified to see that it was a METAL SCREW instead! And the metal screw is the SAME COLOUR as the caramel popcorn!!”

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Ms Toh continued: “We really thank God that my husband decided to spit it out instead of swallowing it – imagine what could have happened if he had swallowed the METAL SCREW!!! Even then, he had to get a tetanus shot from the doctor and had to get his teeth checked in case of fractured tooth since he bit down quite hard on it.”

She added: “Just imagine if it had been a young child or an old person instead…Super super disappointed in Garrett Popcorn – with all the food poisoning cases being reported in the media recently, please please please double check your food before putting it into your mouth!!”

The doctor’s letter dated 24 Aug, that Ms Toh shared as proof that her husband had to seek medical advice after the incident, revealed that her husband sought treatment for fever on 3 Aug 2019. The letter stated:

“He was concerned as he had almost ingested a rusty nail found in his food prior to this. Examination was unremarkable, and no fever was detected at the apparent time (the patient had taken paracetamol, an anti-pyretic, prior to consultation).

“I gave him a booster vaccination against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis during the visit, with advice to monitor his symptoms. He has not had to return to the clinic since 3rd August 2019.”

In a statement released this week, the SFA said that it did not detect any lapses at the food outlet following their investigations. A spokesman said:

“SFA received feedback of a metal screw found in a packet of Garrett popcorn. We have inspected the food outlet and central kitchen, which supplied the packets of popcorn, and did not detect any lapses. This could be an isolated incident.
“Nevertheless, we have advised both the operators of the food outlet and the central kitchen to ensure proper food preparation practices and that there is no contamination of foreign matter in the food sold. Food operators are reminded to adhere to good food hygiene and preparation practices.
“SFA conducts regular inspections of food retail establishments to ensure compliance with hygiene standards, and will not hesitate to take enforcement action if necessary. Members of the public who come across any errant food operator should report to SFA via the online feedback form.”

Rusty metal screw found in caramel popcorn at the new Garrett Popcorn store

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