The Terrifying Surprise Came in a Bag of Broccoli

What would happen if you found yourself a snake among the grocery items you just bought from the shop a few days back? This terrifying incident was experienced by a 63-year-old grandfather, Nevil Lincon who is working as an industrial cleaner in  Stouridge, West Midlands, England. 

It was a regular day for Lincon who just returned home from work and started preparing his meal. While opening a bag of broccoli bought from a local Aldi shop three days earlier, he found a creature like a caterpillar curled up inside a stem of broccoli. A snake was Lincon’s worst nightmare as he has an extreme fear of snakes, aka ophidiophobia. 

However, terrified Lincon was able to contact his sister Ann Marie, 57, and trap the creature into a plastic container which was taken to the Aldi later. Lincon couldn’t believe his eyes until his sister identified it as a snake. 

Lincon explained his experience “I thought she was joking at first, but I backed off when I saw it start moving. The guy in the shop was pretty frightened, too.” He also added “It’s lucky I didn’t just leave the broccoli out in the kitchen, or it would have been loose in the house. That would have been a huge risk for us because we have two vulnerable people living here.” 

Following the incident the Aldi has offered Lincon some compensation, but he believes that it’s not good enough for the emotional trauma he went through and the risk it possessed to his disabled son and vulnerable mother-in-law living with him. 

Later, an Aldy spoke person stated to media “Our supplier has never had a complaint of this nature and has robust processes in place to prevent such issues occurring. We are investigating this isolated incident and have apologized to Mr. Linton that our usual high standards were not met.” 

After the snake was taken to Dudley Zoo, a local zoo in the area, it was identified as a young ladder snake commonly found around southwest Europe.  Although the ladder snake looks scary, it’s known as a non-venomous species capable of giving a rough bite. 

Experts believe that the ladder snake must have been already inside the broccoli when it shipped to UK as most of the vegetables imported to UK are from the countries in southwest region of the Europe, natural habitats of the ladder snakes. 

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