Watch the video above: Dirty Doritos – What consumers found at the bottom of the bag. Sean O’Shea reports.
TORONTO – Tammy McLachlan and her son Connor usually never think twice about putting their hands into a bag of chips but an incident on March 8 has changed that perception forever.
“When we were eating it, we found some brown stuff in the bag and it does not belong there,” McLachlan explained.
The Whitby mother said she and her son were watching television in the dark and sharing a bag of Doritos tortilla chips when they noticed something odd.
“What we thought we were eating, you know, it’s not something you expect to be in the bag. You expect chips. That’s it. Not what we’re looking at here.”
McLachlan said her son immediately ran into the bathroom and started to throw up.
“I threw up three times, it’s just disgusting. I kept thinking about it,” Connor said.
Due to the objects’ size, the McLachlan’s allege the substance were mouse droppings.
“Mouse poop. Just by looking at it, because it’s small. I’ve seen what mouse poop looks like, that was my first reaction,” she said.
The McLachlan’s wanted an explanation and telephoned PepsiCo Foods Canada, the owner of Frito Lay and the makers of Doritos, but say they didn’t receive a satisfactory response after failed attempts to email pictures of the alleged mouse droppings.
It was later revealed that the email address was incorrect and bounced back.
“They should have called me back, when they didn’t receive the photos and they should have been more on top of it,” she said.
“I felt like my concern was, they didn’t take me seriously and that upset me.”
McLachlan contacted Global News over her concerns and the mystery substance was then sent to an independent lab at the University of Guelph for further forensic testing.
The examination was paid for by Global News.
After a week, the results revealed the bag’s leftover contents contained three “distinct types of foreign materials” including “rodent droppings, paper” and “larger lumps of dark material” appearing to be “burnt or overheated product.”
Animals hairs were also discovered under microscopic tests “that were consistent with rodent hairs.”
The final report also noted there was “no damage consistent with rodent chewing or tears” on the package itself. The lab could not determine how the foreign materials got into the bag. The McLachlan family insists they did not leave the chips unattended after opening the package.
When Global News contacted PepsiCo Foods Canada over the test results, the company did not ask for a copy but instead forwarded this written statement:
“We take our customers’ feedback, including complaints, seriously and we’re currently investigating the claim.”
“We have reached out to the CFIA and have reviewed our rigorous pest control protocols at the facility and are confident that they were in place and adequate. However, we cannot, nor can any packaged goods company, speak to what may happen to products that leave our facilities and our control. We haven’t received any other complaints of this nature and will continue to work with the customer to resolve the issue.”
Meanwhile, the McLachlan family remains distraught over their experience and would like some form of apology from the company.
“I’m concerned what I digested, what my son digested and what other people out there are going to be digesting, if it’s in other bags,” said McLachlan.
Global News purchased two other bags of Doritos from the same store, but they did not contain anything but chips.
– With files from Sean O’Shea