A big batch of Coca-Cola cans was recently found at a factory in Northern Ireland containing human waste. The police were informed, and an initial investigation revealed more contaminated cans at the Hellenic Bottling Company factory in the city of Lisburn. Production was immediately stopped. The cans were isolated to contain the incident.
Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO) has taken away all these cans. The company has confirmed that none of the affected cans are on sale. Coca-Cola has also confirmed that the cans on sale at this time are not contaminated.
FSA or the Food Standard Agency has also confirmed that the incident at Lisburn has been isolated. The FSA released a statement saying, “The FSA in Northern Ireland is aware of a physical contamination incident at Coca-Cola Hellenic in Lisburn. There is no evidence to suggest that any affected product has reached the market”.
The Police Launch a Second Investigation
Meanwhile, the Police Service of Northern Ireland has launched a more thorough investigation to find out what really happened at the factory. Many of the 500 employees working at the plant are likely to be questioned. Police detectives are also likely to question many of the Coca-Cola bosses. The factory at Lisburn distributes the beverages throughout Northern Ireland.
A Coca-Cola spokesman said they are always vigilant at all the plants. “The problem was identified immediately through our robust quality procedures and all of the product from the affected batch was immediately impounded and will not be sold”
What Really Happened
Initial reports suggest something could have happened during transit. The cans are brought to the plant without their lids. They are then filled and sealed at Lisburn. Usually, the cans come from different locations in the UK, but this time, they came from Germany.
According to one suggestion, poor immigrants were perhaps traveling in the lorry that was carrying these cans. The immigrants used them as a toilet during the long journey across Europe. In desperation, they were forced to use these cans instead of a toilet.
In a separate development, a court in Nigeria has ruled that Coca-Cola products like Fanta and Sprite could be “poisonous”. While passing the ruling, the court said high benzoic acid levels and sunset additives in these beverages may pose a health risk when mixed with Vitamin C.
Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO) has denied these charges saying, “All our products are safe and strictly adhere to regulations in the countries where they are sold”.