Woman Finds Sleeping Pills In Beef Bought At Walmart

Butcher! There’s a sleeping pill in my beef! A woman is upset after buying meat at Walmart for stroganoff, only to crack open the beef and find two sleeping pills inside.

Store managers told her that Walmart doesn’t package its own beef, and the cops she called later told her that Walmart was checking it out with their supplier. The police were not going to investigate as no one was poisoned.

Walmart refunded her $15 and gave her a $40 gift card so she could try her luck again at purchasing beef.

If you buy food and find a foreign object inside it, file a report with your local health department.

Woman finds sleeping pills in ground beef purchased at Wal-Mart in Indian River County [The Palm Beach Post] (Thanks to David!)


Edit Your Comment

  1. Miss Dev (The Beer Sherpa) says:

    “The police were not going to investigate as no one was poisoned.”

    Because why we would ever want to prevent crime? Absurd!

    • 99 1/2 Days says:

      I thought industrial sabotage was a crime…

    • RayanneGraff says:

      Cause it’s not a crime till someone dies. Then, *maybe* they’ll look into it if they’re not too busy handing out speeding tickets and arresting potheads.

    • Pax says:

      It is not the duty of the police to prevent crime.

      It is the duty of police to investigate crimes, track down the guilty parties, and arrest them.

      • MauriceCallidice says:

        Adulterating food with sleeping pills sounds like a crime to me.

        • Wombatish says:

          Most certainly is.

          Also I guess Pax has never heard of attempted murder or intent to cause bodily injury or conspiracy to commit murder or entering a bank with the intention of theft or *trails off into the sunset*

      • jiubreyn says:

        With the comment noted above yours, the cops failed to investigate the murder resulting from the threats. They failed either way.

    • Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

      As a small boy going to the corner shop, I heard the proprietor complaining that police would not do anything about thugs threatening shop owners for protection money. No provable crime was committed so no investigation. After one of the shop owners was stabbed to death, the police said something to the affect of “What do you expect us to do, the guy is dead?” I think gun sales spiked after that.

  2. SassySoy says:

    i hope they didn’t just repackage the meat that they used to feed the tiger in The hang over. :D

  3. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    I’ve always wondered what Walmart does with the meat people return. (yes… Walmart, Alberstons et al let you return meat and chicken).

    • JDAC says:

      Whole Foods too. I’ve returned some pretty rank chicken and beef, no questions asked.

    • Me - now with more humidity says:

      They throw it out at the return desk. They do that with any perishable.

    • Cejay says:

      I used to work at a Grocery store and yes you can return meat as long as you can tell it’s ruined. They are supposed to throw it out or give it to the Receiver, but most of the time I caught the Meat Department guys repacking it even if it was opened.

  4. JDAC says:

    Not a terrible selling point actually. WalMart beef: No worries, just sleep through the inevitable nausea!

  5. chipslave says:

    I would have to be drugged to buy meat from Walmart.

    • Beeker26 says:

      Their meat isn’t any better or worse than anyone else’s. I just find the prices to be not all that great IMO.

      • chipslave says:

        Must be the Walmart by me then. Their meat usually looks gray, fatty, and unappetizing. Sam Club, however, has a great selection and I buy meat from them frequently.

        • sendmoney2me says:

          walmart and sams meat all comes from the exact same distribution center

          • Silverhawk says:

            Just because it comes from the same distributor doesn’t mean it comes from the same *supplier*, or from the same line. Sam’s often deals with subprimals, and, at least the stores I’ve been too, cuts much of it down to portions from there for their own large retail packaging. The Wal-Mart products are clearly portioned and packaged by the processor.

      • theycallmeGinger says:

        Oh no, it’s definitely worse. When farmers & distributors have to skimp on recommended procedures in order to fit Walmart’s pricing, then meat will be of lower quality. My local grocery has better meat than Walmart, and my local butcher has better meat than the grocery. To sell a cheaper meat, corners must be cut.

      • Dre' says:

        It’s much, much worse than either Winn-Dixie or Whole Foods. Where I live, Whole Foods blows every other grocery away. The local butcher is the only one with better, fresher meat.

        • Beeker26 says:

          Oh you high falutin’ types with your fancy whole food stores and butchers. Out here in the boonies we’re lucky to have a supermarket. Closest thing to a butcher in these here parts are the people that cruise around lookin’ for roadkill.

      • TheGreySpectre says:

        You’ve never been to an actual butcher have you?

        • Beeker26 says:

          Yes I have, but just long enough to realize I can’t afford to shop at a butcher.

          I should have been more verbose in my first post; I was referring in comparison to other similar chain supermarkets. I wasn’t trying to compare them to upscale markets and butchers, where I think it’s safe to assume you’re going to find higher-quality products at a much higher cost.

          • chatterboxwriting says:

            Try shopping around. My butcher charges 53 cents less per pound for 95 percent lean ground than Wal-Mart does for 73/27 ground. I also get excellent steaks, roasts and pork chops from the butcher, cut and packaged exactly the way I want them.

    • hansolo247 says:

      I find the ground beef I buy at Walmart to be better than that at Publix…and tastes better.

  6. Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

    It would be great if I could just get them to put pot in my brownies.

  7. ElizabethD says:

    Maybe it was a “bonus buy”.

  8. Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

    Wait a minute… how did she KNOW they were sleeping pills?
    Wouldn’t any pills in contact with moisture in the beef just sort of disintegrate in a short time?

    • Rickdude says:

      She actually had two pieces of beef. When she woke up, she took the other one back to Wal-Mart.

    • Shadowman615 says:

      Not to imply rtfa or anything, but it seems like the police or walmart determined what the pills were after she returned it.

  9. Destron says:

    Walmat has not packaged their own meat in over 10 years, the butchers went union so Walmart did away with the butchers.

    Walmart has TERRIBLE meat though (and that is partly why) so I don’t know why anyone would buy meat there anyway.

  10. danmac says:

    The police were not going to investigate as no one was poisoned.

    This makes me feel bad for the Burger King employee who is facing 5 years in prison for putting vicodin in customers’ fast food (in that case, no one was successfully poisoned either).


    • Destron says:

      Food tampering is serious business and can net you some prison time, in that case it was an intentional act and they was able to pinpoint who did it. If they could follow these steaks up the supply line, and figure out who actually put them in the package, that person could be in trouble to, especially if it was proven to be on purpose. But the odds of that happening are little to none, and the local police can not do anything to Walmart over the situation anyway, especially since the person that put the pills in the steaks works for a meat packing plant possibly hundreds of miles away and is not in that store.

      • danmac says:

        I understand that sentiment, but the reason the police gave was that no one was poisoned, not that it would be too difficult to apprehend the perpetrator. And yeah, the Burger King employee deserved to be punished, but I still think 5 years was excessive.

    • invisibelle says:

      That’s a really bizarre thing to do, I imagine you could charge way more for a vicodin than you could for a whopper on the street.

  11. Mike says:

    Was it Ambien? How many pills was it? That steak might be cheaper than my co-pay, so I’ll take it!

  12. sendmoney2me says:

    walmart and sams meat all comes from the exact same distribution center

  13. caradrake says:

    Walmart doesn’t package their own meat – so the pills would have had to have been inserted at the place that does package it. Wouldn’t the pills have started to dissolve? Did she find two whole pills, or parts of them?

    If she literally found two whole, undissolved pills, I’d be thinking she put them there herself to get money or 15 minutes of fame.

    Does anyone know enough about science to address this?

    • Whiskey Tango Foxtrot says:

      That’s exactly what I was wondering- wouldn’t the pills have started to dissolve or been just a mushy mess by the time she found it, IF it had first been packaged at a distribution plant before being shipped to Walmart, then sitting in the display case a day or 2 before being sold….something doesn’t seem right with this story.

      • Blueberry Scone says:

        Those are really good points. I don’t know anything about how pills dissolve, but I’d think that a slab of uncooked meat would start breaking the pills well before the customer got home.

  14. Nogard13 says:

    She should be thanking Wal-Mart for selling her meat and filling her prescription all in one package (thereby helping to save the environment). Wal-Mart is just going green!

  15. Mish says:

    How did she know what kind of pill it was?

    • Blueberry Scone says:

      Maybe if the pill had some kind of identifying marker on it, like a distinct color and the name of the pill. If you find pills, you can look up what they are here: http://www.drugs.com/imprints.php (the site sounds like it’s more for parents who want to ID the pills they’ve found in their kid’s room).

      Initially, I thought “I don’t know that I’d go so far as to ID a pill that I found in a piece of meat.” But you know what? I’d be pretty freaked out to find pills, and I’d want to know what it is. Not that sleeping pills are “better” than, say, birth control pills or pills to treat heart disease, but I’d want to know, regardless.

    • DcChick says:

      The article says “The two 25 mg blue pills have since been identified as a sleep aid.”
      This leads me to believe they were sent somewhere for id.
      At the time she went into Wal-Mart with the cops all she knew was that there were pills in her burger.

  16. lehrdude says:

    Did anyone else notice the “From ConsumerReports.orgg” link under the article to “Expecting a baby? Stock up on stuff in the fall”

  17. midtower says:

    Lessee… the article does not state _she_ claimed they were sleeping pills:

    Quote: “…The two 25 mg blue pills have since been identified as a sleep aid.”

    • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

      Still, per my post above, WHY weren’t they at least partially disolved? Without visual identification, how do you determine they are sleeping pills? Lab analysis? Note that “The police were not going to investigate as no one was poisoned.”

    • Cheap Sniveler: Sponsored by JustAnswer.comâ„¢ says:

      Still, per my post above, WHY weren’t they at least partially disolved? Without visual identification, how do you determine they are sleeping pills? Lab analysis? Note that “The police were not going to investigate as no one was poisoned.”

      • Conformist138 says:

        Odds are, they wouldn’t dissolve as easily in cold, partially solidified meat fat, at least not the same as if you dunked them in water. Particularly, if the meat wasn’t being mashed up (and thus leaving any dissolved parts in place and not disbursing them into the rest of the meat) there would likely be at least a core portion of the pill remaining. No one said they were in perfect out-of-the-bottle condition, just that they were pills.

        The woman didn’t mention suing Walmart and she did accept the gift card, so I don’t think she’s out for a payday. Her setting this whole thing up sounds unlikely.

  18. chaesar says:

    of course she’s mad, her butcher/dealer said there’d be a dozen

  19. diasdiem says:

    Somewhere there’s a cat burglar who’s going to get mauled by guard dogs when he throws them ordinary meat.

  20. Tristan Smith says:

    Reminds me of the Movie the hangover. “Tigers love pepper they hate cinnamon”

  21. duxup says:

    Maybe it isn’t the tryptophan.

  22. crazymatt1 says:

    I’m not trying to blame the OP, but…

    – After a little research, based on the pill size (25mg) and color (blue), it was most likely Doxylamine Succinate, available OTC as Unisom. (The other option is Hydroxyzine, a 5mm round pill)

    – These pills (10x5mm oval) are larger than the holes in the die used for the final grind of retail ground beef (3mm), which means that they would have to have been placed in the meat after it was ground

    – If you look at the ground meat in the tray, it is clear that it has undergone minimal handling between the grinder and the tray, as evidenced by the very thin continuous strands of meat (the specification for ground beef prohibits any mixing after the final grind). There is no way a pill could be inserted in the middle of the tray without noticeably disturbing the meat

    I see three possible options for how the pills got in the meat:

    1) Pills were in the tray and ground meat was placed on top of the pills. Based on the volume of any plant supplying Wal*Mart, there is very little human contact with any individual empty container.

    2) Pills were inserted into the meat and the customer didn’t notice the disturbed beef. Again, based on the likely plant volume, there is probably no human contact between the grinding and sealing of the packages.

    3) The woman put the pills in the meat herself. This, to me, is the most likely scenario.

    • crazymatt1 says:

      I wrote my post based on the assumption that the ground beef in question was packaged in a modified-atmosphere plastic tray. If it was a bulk “chub” pack, the chances to slip pills into the packaging before grinding drop to virtually nil, and it becomes much more difficult to put them in after grinding as well.

      • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

        I remember when I worked at a supermarket, and a customer’s lawyer claimed they found a piece of the metal bristles from “the brushes we use to clean our equipment with” in their chopped meat. Except that we didn’t use metal brushes. We either used poly brushes or a pressure washer with sanitizer mixed with heated water to clean them off. Not sure what happened to the case there.

    • Erika'sPowerMinute says:

      Excellent post. My first reaction was, “Oh baloney, that doesn’t even make sense; how would two intact pills even get in there?!” but of course I’m too lazy to bother researching that.

      I think 99/100 of these “I found X in my Y!!!!” stories are hoaxes.

  23. StrangeEmily says:

    I see i’m not the only one who thought the woman put the pills in herself… i mean calling the police? what did she hope to accomplish???

  24. Happy Tinfoil Cat says:

    Ground beef in for beef stroganoff??!? Seriously, what was she thinking? She should be jailed ;^)

  25. omg says:

    Eat Walmart beef tonight and sleep…safe and restful…sleep sleep sleep

  26. pot_roast says:

    Like many other “I found $OBJECT in my food!” stories, this one will probabaly turn out fake too.

  27. grumpygirl says:

    They should have called their county health department. Those folks live for cases like this. When it comes to food tampering/food poisoning, stores & restaurants would only wish they had just the police to deal with.

    Maybe it’s just the county I live in, but I’ve felt the need to report food establishments twice in the 15 years I’ve lived here. In both cases, I received about 4 follow-up phone calls from the county health department for each incident, and the desired resolution both times.