Customer finds dead rat in House Brand basmati rice bag

The bag of rice containing the dead rat. Sheng Siong said it has removed House Brand basmati rice products from all outlets.
The bag of rice containing the dead rat. Sheng Siong said it has removed House Brand basmati rice products from all outlets.PHOTO: FACEBOOK/VEGNESH JODIMANI

Supermarket chain Sheng Siong has removed House Brand basmati rice products from its shelves after a dead rat was found by a customer in a bag of rice.

Mr Jayakumar, 64, director of the supplier K N P Trading, said other bags of the rice from the same batch are also being recalled from other stores, including Cold Storage and some provision shops.

Other unaffected batches of the rice are still being supplied.

The complaint was the only one received so far about the affected batch, said Mr Jayakumar, who goes by only one name.

Mr Vegnesh Jodimani, 42, said on Facebook that he bought the rice from a Sheng Siong outlet in Bedok Reservoir Road last Saturday.

He told The Straits Times yesterday that his daughter noticed a strange smell after the bag was opened, and it got stronger as she poured the rice out. "From the smell, I knew it was a dead thing," he said.

"My three children are traumatised by the incident, they have a temporary phobia of eating rice," added Mr Vegnesh, an inspector in the aviation industry.

Mr Jayakumar said the product is packed by his supplier in India, which has been asked to investigate and submit its findings. He pledged to restore consumers' trust in the brand and also apologised for the "isolated incident".

A Sheng Siong spokesman said yesterday that all its outlets immediately removed House Brand basmati rice products after receiving the complaint. Sheng Siong has refunded the customer and will work closely with the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA).

An AVA spokesman said on Sunday: "The (food) industry is reminded to exercise diligence in ensuring the food it supplies is fit for consumption."

Goh Yan Han

• Additional reporting by Gilaine Ng

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 05, 2019, with the headline 'Customer finds dead rat in House Brand basmati rice bag'. Print Edition | Subscribe