Need advice on maggots found on Don Sliced Ham purchased through Coles

We bought a Don Sliced Ham from Coles on the 16-Nov evening and placed in the fridge. On the 17-Nov at 9am we opened it and rolled and presented it on a platter with some cheese and bread for a birthday party. Four individuals ate the ham at around 10am, 5th person noticed some maggots on the ham. We checked and found maggots on the inside of the remaining uneaten rolled ham, and people felt sick thinking about it. We took photos and recorded a video.

We talked to Coles who were really worried about the product, rather than the wellbeing of the individuals, however because it is a 3rd party product, just wanted to refund it. Then we spoke to Don themselves, but they said that nothing was wrong with their production line, unless the packaging was compromised.

So, who is responsible for anthing that may have left the factory and on to the shelves at Coles if the packaging got damaged? It could be breached anytime/anywhere, including during transporation.

We were really embarassed and had to answer to the parents of these three individuals. The first person who ate it was our own daughter. One of the parents took the child to the doctor. I don't want anything for ourselves, but would like someone to contact the four individuals and apologise to them.

Any health and safety dept that should be alerted?

Do you know any media who would like to cover this story? The treatment from Don is very much "sorry but we are not at fault", then who is responsible? It can't be the consumer.


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    • I didn't know that the council had a health department.

      • +3

        Example from my Council Website:

        Report a food hygiene or safety issue

        Council also investigates food safety complaints about food hygiene, foreign object contamination and poor food handling at food premises in Moreland.

        When you make a food complaint, Council will let you know the outcome and hopefully prevent it from happening again.

        Common complaints are:

        foreign object in a food that should not be there, for example a bug or a piece of wood, metal or plastic
        food that cannot be eaten because it is unfit for human use, for example, mouldy or rotten food
        damaged food containers
        packaged foods without proper labelling, for example, best before date, use by dates, nutritional information and country of origin.
        unclean food businesses, for example, dirty food preparation surfaces, uncontained rubbish, rat or mice droppings or cockroaches on the premises, and
        poor or questionable food handling procedures.

        How to make a food safety complaint to Council

        Contact Council and describe the details of the food safety problem, including:

        what you ate, bought or saw
        where: name and address
        when: date and time that you ate, bought food or observed a problem, and
        any other relevant details, for example, a description of person who served you if the complaint relates to food handling.

        Council will investigate your complaint. Your complaint is confidential and we will keep you informed on the progress of the investigation.

  • -2


    • If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them….maybe you can hire The A-Team

  • +2

    Statistics - 1 posts

    seems about right

    16-Dec …. 17-Dec

    time machine is working though

  • +4

    It could be breached anytime/anywhere, including during transporation.

    Including from Coles to your fridge?

    • +2

      or between fridge and plate. left the package open for 2 mins. unattended is enough for a fly to get in there, lay some maggots and bug out…

      They are way to small to have been deposited at the factory, packaged up, sent to a warehouse, distributed to the stores, unpacked, packed on fridge shelves, taken home, stored some more, opened and boom, maggots!

      My guess is that OP needs to apologise to the guests. But that would mean accepting blame and that means OP could be the brunt of any legal action… Coles and Don dont want to accept responsibility for exactly the same reason.

      Today/Tonight or ACA… Facebook mum's group and twitter.

    • hmmm … are any of your friends … maggots … ?

  • +5

    Obviously if you rolled the ham before serving you shoukd have notice the maggots, right?! Just wondering how hot was that day?! If it was larvae , the temperature might have triggered it. The only reason that can explain you didn t see it or notice before hand ( and no offence in what i would say) is that you are vision impaired or have some sight trouble. So maybe get a letter of your optometrist and send it to coles? To be honnest, i always take a look at what i cook or plate. Not because i'm scare to find something but just to make sure that the visual look nice and fresh. Especially if the food is intended to someone else.

  • +1

    Is Don. At fault!

    Siding with OP, Don should at least offer to courier another pack of ham as an apology and not deny it.

    • +1

      Why would you ever eat anything Don branded again after this. I still don't eat that brand of salami that killed all those people.

    • +6

      I echo the above comments not to eat that.

  • +8

    Replace and refund with some apologies should be enough if they do it. I wouldn't start a crusade

      • +5

        "d Don just try to pass the blame on to someone-else;"

        Oh, the irony.

        Some flies lay live maggots. I can't judge as you seem to have removed your video and photos.

        I'll keep reading to see if there's a clue as to why.

  • +10

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    I'm glad OP finally came out of the woodwork.

    But seriously, what do you expect? If there is no damage (other than a bit of embarrassment for you), you are only ever going to be offered a refund. Kick up a stink and you might get a gift card, but you're not going to have them apologise to anyone who might have eaten the stuff.

    Why would you want to involve the media? No one is ill, no one is disadvantaged, no one's life is in anyway different as a result of this situation.

    We all know it shouldn't happen, but there is always a chance when dealing with food and perishable items.

  • +25

    looking at the size of the maggot, these appear to be freshly laid larvae from a 'Flesh Fly'. These types of flies deposit live larvae rather than eggs.
    I would assume, that sometime between opening the pack, and the discovery, a Flesh Fly has done what it is genetically engineered to do.

  • +2

    Lol nice try.

    Call Don and have them laugh at you

    • Then we spoke to Don themselves, but they said that nothing was wrong with their production line, unless the packaging was compromised.

      • Dont even think its actually possible, you should see those places

      • +1

        Don't expect anyone to take any responsibility for anything, ever. And when push comes to shove, expect them to shove you back sooner than they will even entertain the idea that they made a mistake. I'd expect Don to sue you for even posting these photos and video, hope you never gave them your real name because I bet they can afford their choice of law firms.

      • +1

        Ask to speak to Don.

  • Is good.

  • -1

    Drama. Get over it.

  • +4

    Sure, not pleasant but nobody will get sick. The parent that took child to Dr was over-reacting.

  • Thank you for your advice. I got what I came here for. I know what I have to do next.

    • +5

      What do you have to do next?

      If they were flesh fly larvae as people suspect isn’t it your fault?

      • +2


      • +2

        replace new magotts with older maggots and retake photo for proof?

      • Eat it.

    • +1

      Don’t kill DON

    • +2

      Did you realise you screwed up by blaming Coles and Don after a few people pointed out the maggots in your pictures were too fresh for it to have been a manufacturing problem?

      It might be useful for others' education purposes if you left the pictures and video up.

  • +9

    Stop grandstanding, take the bloody thing back and get it replaced. Are you hankering for a million dollar payout or something?

  • +4

    Apparently this is your first time realising that shit happens in life.

    You fed kids maggots. You have to live with that. It will never go away.

    • +3

      just laugh at the kids.: "haha I feed you maggots and YOU ate it!"

      • +3

        Play video at 21st birthday party

  • Jesus….
    That’s why I don’t buy meat from the supermarket.

    • +3

      isnt this more a lesson as to why to have good food handling practices at home?
      they weren't there from the store, based on the pics

      So i assume the OP has apologised to the 4 parents involved, considering the food handling prior to serving fell onto them.

      • +2

        I feel subconsciously Op doesn't like the parents and thats why didn't 'see' the maggots.

  • -2

    17th of November. Over two weeks ago.
    Was it "sealed" in vacuum seal?
    Or was it from the deli department?
    Did you immediately place the meat into the fridge?
    Is your fridge set at the right temperature?

    Check the USE BY date

  • +1

    This is first world problem, people on the other side of the world eat maggots as their main, let's move on…

  • +2

    I’ve found a fly on a windowsill that was nearly dead, and it deposited very small larvae on the sill. That’s my suspicion here, is that a fly nearly dead landed on the ham after being served and deposited larvae onto the food, rather than the fly being on the ham and laying eggs that then hatched into maggots.

  • +9

    The forbidden rice.

    Just tell them sorry, your own kid ate it, it wasn't something that was done intentionally and move on with life.
    Or as the rest of us call it, "just being an adult"

    • +4


      "One of the parents took the child to the doctor" - that is ridiculous if the child didn't have any symptoms. What a waste of Medicare funded GP time!

  • +2

    “ We ain't had nothing but maggoty bread for three stinking days!”

  • +6

    Aw why were the photos taken down so quickly. I want to see what the fuss is about.

    • They're still in the OP

      • +3

        All the links are dead and the video says it has been removed by the uploader.

        • Hmm must have been on the cache then when I looked just now

        • Could someone else delete the photos? OP needs to tell us.

    • +3

      I wanted to see the maggots too. All photos/video deleted or removed.
      How disappointing

  • +6

    OP, I’m sorry this happened to you. It sounds like the most likely scenario is that a fly landed on the ham after you served it and laid live maggots. I’ve had this happen with a can of tuna I was eating. It’s disgusting!

    Even if it did not happen under your watch, trying to pursue anyone else to take responsibility for this will only lead to more stress.

    I understand this is very embarrassing but you need to take responsibility for this, apologise to the parents, and consider buying some fly nets for serving food in future.

  • +1

    Check your fridge… had a couple flies manage to get into a working fridge. There was a lot of over icing and this pushed up the vents and food would get stuck there. That attracted flies. managed to clean most of it, but on christmas eve a couple maggots started crawling out.

  • +4

    Maggot eggs won't hatch at fridge temperatures.

    So it must have been left warm for a while at some stage for them to hatch.

  • Read your piece OP I think just another setup that they are getting sick of. Until other turn up with a similar story it hard to swallow . Other will turn up if what you say is true and I'll apologize .

  • I mean it is a carcus what you expecting

  • OP has now blamed the parents of the four kids for sending their kids to OP's house for the party which prompted the purchased of said hams

  • +4

    I thought the parents bringing their child to a doctor because of the accidental ingestion of maggots was a bit of an over reaction.

  • +2

    Another reason not to buy produce that isn't Australian. Spend an extra dollar or so and buy fresh Aussie ham off the bone next time.

  • +3

    Damn t hats awful experience. Sorry to hear youhad to go through that

    • +3

      a sympathetic person on an online forum… presuming this is not sarcasm… what a rarity… +1

      • -1

        Thanks. It’s not sarcasm. I really mean it.

        I hate it to happen to me, imagine feeding my friends kids food with maggot. That’s horrible.

  • Hey why didn't you post the name of the store? Hand over your OZB badge…this should have been a deal in its own right

  • +7

    who's the maggot that deleted all the photos?

    • is there a mirror anywhere??

      • +5

        yeah , mirror link up.

        right here

        • +1

          Not as many maggots as I thought

  • This is Australia… similar to America, no win no fee lawyers would be salivating themselves eager to help you for a huge compensation. On the basis that it caused severe emotional and mental damage. Long term one. Very bad one.


  • Maggots are full of protein. My advise is to eat them fresh and raw over sun drying them.

  • +3

    The person serving the ham on the platter should take responsibility first and foremost.

  • +3

    OP seems to have moved on and deleted the pics and video. What was the conclusion? Did he reach a billion dollar settlement and agree to remove the photos? Was he forced to remove them by court order? Did he eat the maggots? Find out in the next episode of OZBARGAIN.

  • +1

    Don't you look at food when you're prepping it?

    However, after reading some comments above I understand how this may of happened and will definitely think twice about leaving food open.

  • +1

    I came here late where are the video and pictures? Damn you OP for deleting them I want a visual aid!!!!

    • +1

      Don't worry they'll be on the front cover of all the major newspapers tomorrow

  • +1

    It's 2020 bruh. We've had bigger problems than maggots.

    Wait in line, many other more things to report on the news, sorry, I understand how you may feel, but you'll need to let it go.

  • Is don is good

  • -3

    And this is why manufacturers can get away with it.

  • +1

    can't load the video or photos?

  • glad you managed to get a refund since ordinarily they don't… probably thought a refund would buy you off cuz Coles are nasty these days…

    • Lol a refund is the easiest thing to get at coles for a spoilt item. Not sure what you've tried to return

      • not any more

        • Care to share your experience? I'm not talking about change of mind. They will always refund if there's something wrong with the product

  • Better than finding half a maggot eh?

    • or one that died eating whats in the packet…could have saved your life that maggot