Virginia mom claims rodent found in Lipton Iced Tea can

Published: Mar. 18, 2015 at 1:13 AM EDT|Updated: Mar. 28, 2015 at 4:01 AM EDT
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EMPORIA, VA (WWBT) - A Virginia woman claims she found a rodent inside of a can of Lipton Sparkling Peach Iced Tea. She has the can to prove it. PepsiCo and the Virginia Department of Agriculture confirm they are on the case.

"I was just sick," said Amanda Robertson. "I almost threw up looking at it. I couldn't believe it."

Robertson says she actually drank a portion of the tea before noticing something inside. The Emporia woman claims doctors now say she has a painful case of acute food poisoning.

"I'm just scared," said Robertson. "My biggest fear is not being with my kids and my husband. If it had some disease...that could hurt me, and I don't want that to happen to anybody else."

Amanda says she bought the iced tea at a Walmart in Christianburg, Va.

"What would you say to the family?" we asked PepsiCo Spokeswoman Gina Anderson.

"Thanks for the opportunity to respond," said Anderson. "The safety and integrity of our products in our highest priority. We are thoroughly investigating this matter. We've spoken with Ms. Robertson directly and she informed us that she opened the can on Sunday and drank from the open product over a two-day period. We've also checked the product's code, which includes its manufacturing location and production date, and we've received no other similar complaints from that production run. We've asked Ms. Robertson for the sample and once we receive it we'll be able to continue our investigation."

We also tracked down a representative with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

"We're talking about the safety of the food supply here," said Elaine Lidholm with VDACS.

Lidholm says they plan to launch their own investigation. She also stresses this is extremely rare.

"But things can go wrong," said Lidholm. "Our inspection program is designed to prevent problems like this, but we don't have a 100% success rate. Nobody does."

That's why Amanda wants you to remember one thing.

"Check your cans," said Amanda. "Check everything. I know I will now."

Lidholm says the state food inspection office gets about 700 complaints a year. Call 804-786-3520 if you have a complaint.

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