Sewing needles were taken off the shelves at a major Australian supermarket chain on Thursday amid a national panic over sharp objects being found inside strawberries and other fruit.
"We've taken the precautionary step of temporarily removing sewing needles from sale in our stores".
"The safety of our customers is our top priority", the retailer said, without discussing further the reasons behind its decision.
More than 100 reports of tampered fruit are being investigated across the country after needles were originally found in Queensland strawberries.
Woolworths Pulls Sewing Needles From Shelves in Wake of Fruit-Tampering Scare
A 12-year-old girl has been caught out pulling a needle strawberry "prank" at a Blue Mountains school in NSW, as government officials threaten to crack down on the "parasites" behind the nation's fruit contamination crisis.
NSW produces around one per cent of Australia's strawberries.
The boy, whose name has not been disclosed because of his age, confessed to putting the sewing needles in strawberries as a prank and is not believed to be the culprit behind other fruit contaminations in the region, New South Wales police authorities told ABC News.More news: 'We're officially back in business' - Veronica Mars revival on the way
Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said people sharing fake images on social media should delete the posts to stop them wasting police time.
"I'm just focused on making sure no idiot goes into a supermarket this weekend and does something ridiculous", Mr Morrison told reporters in Royalla in NSW.
The news follows Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison's warning to copycat perpetrators that they would face harsh penalties under the legislation he would introduce Thursday.More news: 'Firenado' sucks up hose during British Columbia wildfire
The Australian government is rushing legislation through parliament to ratchet up the maximum penalties for so-called "food terrorists" from 10 to 15 years behind bars.
Are you still buying strawberries? It's not amusing. You are putting the livelihoods of hardworking Australians at risk and you are scaring children.
'It is beyond belief that anybody would deliberately sabotage fruit to try and harm people in the process, harm our hardworking fruit farmers and the industry, ' she told parliament.More news: Nokia 5.1 Plus to launch in India on September 24 as Flipkart