The soft drink giant says the incident at its factory in Lisburn was an isolated one
Police have begun an investigation after suspected human waste turned up in a consignment of cans due to be used at a Coca-Cola factory in Northern Ireland.
As reported by the Belfast Telegraph, factory workers on the night shift at the plant in Lisburn last week were left horrified when they made the discovery inside a number of cans on the production line.
“It was absolutely horrible, and the machines had to be turned off for about 15 hours to be cleaned,” a source told the paper adding “it was unusual because normally the cans come from somewhere else in the UK, but this time they apparently came from Germany.
“The rumour is that some poor immigrants could have made that long journey in the lorry and that in their desperation were forced to use the cans instead of a toilet.”
The soft drinks giant insisted the issue was identified “immediately” and that it had no impact on its products on sale.
In a statement, the company said: “Coca-Cola takes the safety and quality of our products extremely seriously.
“We are aware of an incident involving empty cans at our plant in Knockmore Hill, Lisburn. We are treating this matter extremely seriously and are conducting a thorough investigation in co-operation with the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI).”
A PSNI spokesman said: “Detectives are investigating an incident at commercial premises in the Lisburn area following reports that a consignment of containers delivered to the premises had been contaminated. The investigation is at an early stage and there are no further details available at this time.”
The Food Standards Agency (FSA) said there was no evidence to suggest the contaminated cans had reached the market in Northern Ireland.
“The incident is subject to an investigation by the PSNI and the environmental health unit of Lisburn and Castlereagh city council,” the FSA said.