Strawberry Sabotage Reaches NZ

New Zealanders are now being advised to cut up their strawberries.

A punnet of Australian strawberries with needles has been found in New Zealand in the first reported case of contamination across the Tasman.

The fruit, imported under the Choice branch from Western Australia, had been sold in Auckland, Woolworths-owned Countdown - one of NZ's two major supermarket groups - announced on Sunday evening.

No injuries were reported.

The case follows more than 100 reported cases of needles in fruit, across Australia.

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Sewing needles have been found in strawberries across several Australian states, prompting a mass recall of the product and a tightening of the country's export laws. Metal found in a banana in Queensland was dismissed as an isolated mental health incident, while the saga this week stretched to a third product, after a mother in Sydney's west claimed she had found a needle embedded in an apple.

Countdown said the brand had been pulled off its shelves and had not previously been flagged as a concern.

Authorities on both side of the Tasman had been alerted, Countdown said.

It last week announced it had stopped importing Australian strawberries as a precaution following scares across the states, while competitor Foodstuffs halted distribution to its stores.

With AAP