File this story under crap you didn’t want to know. Police in Northern Ireland have opened an investigation to find out exactly how human faeces found its way into a shipment of cans at a Coca-Cola bottling plant.
The soft drink behemoth told The Guardian that the poop-containing cans were discovered at the Hellenic Bottling Company factory in Lisburn, Co Antrim. Production was abruptly shut down when the machines were clogged by said poop.
According to Coke’s representatives, the cans arrived at the factory empty and without a top. They are then filled with delicious sugar water and capped before making their way to distribution. At the moment, it’s unknown at what point in the supply chain the cans became contaminated. A spokesman for the Police Service of Northern Ireland told The Guardian, “The investigation is at an early stage and there are no further details available at this time.”
For its part, Coke says there’s nothing to see here. In a statement, the company assured drinkers that this was a small problem that has been remedied. “The problem was identified immediately through our robust quality procedures and all of the product from the affected production was immediately impounded and will not be sold. This is an isolated incident and does not affect any products currently on sale,” the statement reads.
Of course, the story of machines becoming clogged and having to be shut down doesn’t totally fit with “robust quality procedures” catching the problem. But it’s not like Coke meant to put the poop in those cans. The real mystery is, how much was it? How many cans? How much human crap does it take to shut down a big machine like that?
Ireland’s Food Standards Agency assured consumers that “there is no evidence to suggest that any affected product has reached the market”. And this really shouldn’t stop you from drinking a refreshing soft drink. But as we learned from the incident in which a man reportedly found a dead mouse in his Monster energy drink, always examine your canned goods before drinking.