STOCKTON -- A man captured what appears to be a number of mice running through crates of tomatoes in a Stockton supermarket.
Warning: The video below includes some offensive language.
At first glance, cell phone video of a bin of tomatoes looks seemingly innocuous, but look closer and you might not like what you see.
Lee Yim shared cell phone footage with FOX40 of at least one rodent peeking its head through a bunch of tomatoes at the Food 4 Less on March Lane in Stockton. He said he made the discovery Sunday night when he reached out to pick a tomato for dinner.
“Pick the tomatoes and all of a sudden you see a big ol’ rat just run across,” Yim said.
We shared the video with customers on Monday.
“I won’t buy anymore tomatoes here,” Bennie Martin said.
“Oh no! That’s not good. I’m glad I didn’t buy those today,” Chris Thomas said.
The San Joaquin County Environmental Health Department said they received a number of calls on Monday morning about the rodent sighting. They sent an inspector to the store who found evidence of rodent activity. The agency ordered the Food 4 Less store to take the following steps:
- close any impacted areas of the produce section of the store and remove the produce from sale
- conduct thorough cleaning and disinfection of the impacted areas
- seek immediate additional pest control measures for the impacted areas
- eliminate all possible rodent harborage areas
We also reached out to Food 4 Less. The managers on-site refused to speak with us.
Late Monday night, we received the following statement from the Food 4 Less management team:
"We are aware of the issue at our March Lane Food and have taken immediate steps to correct the matter. We pride ourselves on maintaining a clean store. The health and safety of our customers is our primary concern. Our team will continue to work closely with health department officials until we are confident the matter is resolved."
“Look at it properly, inspect more often because you never know,” Yim said.
For Yim, he said his appetite was spoiled, his trip to the grocery store was ruined.
“No tomatoes, I dropped everything and I’m done. The only thing I just grabbed was my oysters. That’s about it,” he explained.
The county said inspectors will be back to make sure the unwelcome guests are gone for good.
Reportedly, employees were notified of the infestation and threw the produce away, but were unable to catch the mice at the time.