Derst Baking Company President Paul Frankum said Wednesday he’s 99 percent certain a straight pin found by a Richmond Hill customer in a loaf of the company’s bread was put there after it was made because “everything goes through a metal detector before it leaves the bakery.”
“There are very strict measures in place to ensure that type of thing doesn’t happen, that no foreign object gets into a product and leaves the plant,” Frankum said. “One of those measures is the metal detector, and that would have caused that loaf of bread to be kicked off the product line. That’s why we’re reasonably certain this didn’t happen during the manufacturing process.”
The straight pin was found inside a loaf of Nature’s Own Cinnamon Raisin Swirl bread purchased Thursday afternoon at Kroger in Richmond Hill. The customer returned the bread to Kroger, and store management in turn notified Derst Baking Company.
A Kroger employee said Wednesday the store had no comment, but that it followed policy by contacting the vendor responsible for the brand so they could take action.
Frankum went to police Friday, which generated an incident report. He told police “his company has already sent the loaf of bread to their investigation department to determine whether the bread left their factory with the pin inside, or if there is a possibility that someone added the pin through the packaging at Kroger after it was delivered,” according to the report.
“Mr. Frankum only wished to notify law enforcement at this time per his company’s protocol and advised that he did not currently need police action taken,” the report said.
Frankum said Wednesday the bread was sent to an independent lab to see if it can be determined how the pin got into the bread and “it can be a period of time before we hear back from them.”
He also said the company’s own investigation is still ongoing, but it is company procedure to notify police in case it isn’t an isolated incident. This is the first time in recent memory such a report has been released by the Richmond Hill Police Department, and Frankum said police told him there had not been similar incidents reported.
Derst Bakery in Savannah has been owned by Thomasville, Ga.-based Flowers Foods since 2006, according to www.flowersfoods.com. Flowers Foods operates 46 bakeries and manufactures such brands as Cobblestone, Merita and Sunbeam, among others.