A woman got a nasty shock when she found a dead lizard in the lettuce she had bought at a supermarket in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.
Michelle Carr, from Kittery, Maine, said she bought the lettuce at a Shaw’s supermarket.
She said she does not usually shop at Shaw’s or even buy pre-packaged lettuce.
“It was disgusting,” Carr told ABC affiliate WCVB. “It was a shock. I immediately started to retch.”
The reptile, about 3 inches long, was dead and missing its tail.
Carr said she washing the lettuce to make a homemade salad for lunch on Jan. 29, the Portsmouth Herald reported. The new mother of a 10-week-old newborn went in to take a bite, but her fork hit something firmer than an avocado slice.
“I put my fork into my salad after a couple of bites and realized that my fork was not in an avocado slice,” she told WCVB. “It was a lizard.”
She is now unsure if she consumed the tail “There’s no way to know whether or not I actually ingested the tail or not,” Carr said.
The mother said she purchased the bag of store-brand romaine lettuce at Shaw’s on Jan. 26.
Her friend, a New Hampshire-based biologist, identified the reptile as a blue-bellied lizard from California, WCVB reported.
After the initial shock, she called health officials about the incident but had not yet received word back if her complaint was being investigated, according to the Portsmouth Herald.
She said she is concerned about salmonella and E.coli exposure to her and her baby.
On Monday, Feb. 5, New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services (NHDHHS) communications director, Jake Leon, said they had received the complaint.
He said because the lettuce was packaged and shipped in another state, the investigation would be run by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
“We took the complaint and passed it along to the FDA with the understanding it was being investigated,” Leon told the Portsmouth Herald.
Carr hopes her incident comes as a warning to others to watch what they purchase and to know where it comes from.
“It’s not just something you read about in the papers,” she told WCVB. “We need to be really diligent about washing your produce no matter where you get it from.”
A Shaw’s spokesman said the company is working to figure out what happened and how to stop it from occurring again.