British retailer Sainsbury's says it has seen no proof that a foreign object reportedly found in a block of Wensleydale Blue cheese sold in one of its stores is a human tooth.
Earlier this week, the Daily Mail and others reported that Jane Betts from Cambridge “was horrified” to find a tooth when while eating a piece of Wensleydale Blue cheese bought from the deli counter at her local Sainsbury’s store.
Having checked it wasn't her own, she reportedly took the tooth to a dentist who confirmed it was human. It has now been handed over to environmental health officers at Cambridge City Council who are investigating the incident.
In a statement sent to DairyReporter.com, Sainsbury's said, however, that it has seen no proof the contaminant is a human tooth "rather than a calcium build-up or other material" or that it even came from one of its products.
It added that the customer had "accepted goodwill" to compensate for her inconvenience, but declined to comment any further.
“As you’ll understand we can’t comment further until the environmental health officers have concluded their investigation,” the statement concluded.
"Not yet been identified"
Sainsbury's, the UK's second largest retailer, declined to identify the cheese maker that supplied the cheese. But approached by DairyReporter.com, Yorkshire-based Wensleydale Creamery confirmed that it had supplied the block of cheese in question.
Mirroring Sainsbury's comments, Wensleydale Creamery said that the contaminant has yet to be confirmed as human, or even as a tooth.
“Food hygiene and safety is our number one priority here at the Wensleydale Creamery and we are taking this situation very seriously and have moved quickly with Sainsbury’s to understand and identify the issue. As yet the foreign body has not yet been identified,” said Judy Brennand, technical manager, Wensleydale Creamery.
“As an approved supplier to Sainsbury’s we have the highest standards of food safety with a rigorous foreign body policy process.”
“Our staffs are highly skilled and trained cheese makers with the highest levels of personal hygiene," she added.