PILL IN SWEETS PACK: Stockport child sent to hospital by painkiller in Smarties

Stockport – VIJAY SHAH via ALIA ROPUN, upday, JOE ROBERTS and Metro

A five-year-old English child was taken to hospital after coming across a painkiller tablet she found inside a packet of chocolate sweets, online newspaper Metro reported yesterday.

The little girl, Annabelle Stark, had gone out trick-or-treating for Hallowe’en with her three-year-old brother, Joel, in the northern England town of Stockport. She was given a pack of Smarties, a sweet containing chocolate covered in a sugar shell popular among children in the United Kingdom.

Her mother, Kayleigh Stark, gave the packets of sweets to her children as a treat, only to discover that one of the Smarties was a prescription pill, namely the strong anti-inflammatory medicine Diclofenac, which is only available via a doctor’s prescription note. The mother became concerned that Annabelle had eaten a pill and immediately rushed the child to hospital, Metro reported.


The orange-coloured pill, which bears a strong resemblance to a Smartie, was also taken by the mother to show to doctors at Stepping Hill Hospital. She had opened the box this past Thursday and poured the sweets into a bowl for her son when she spotted the medicine, which is believed to have been put in the box of Smarties after the multipack it was in was opened by the original purchaser who gifted it to the children.

Stark told Metro: “It was right at the top (of the Smarties box)”

‘I noticed it because it was slightly bigger and wasn’t shiny like the other Smarties.’

Kayleigh called her husband Chris to notify him of the discovery, and found out that their daughter had already eaten another box of Smarties on Hallowe’en. Worried for her health, they called the 111 non-emergency number run by the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), where an advisor asked her to take Annabelle to her nearest hospital accident and emergency ward.

“We just didn’t know if there had been another pill – or what it even was,” she said.

Kayleigh added: ‘Annabelle was fine, we could see that, but we wanted to be on the safe side.’

‘We took her to Stepping Hill hospital and they carried out loads of tests – blood pressure, temperature, blood sugars, urine samples, heart trace.

‘She was quite scared by it all as she didn’t feel poorly. I had to explain to her that she hadn’t done anything wrong, but that there was a naughty pill in her brother’s sweets so we had to check her over.

‘It was quite overwhelming for her.”

Thankfully, Annabelle was given a clean bill of health, although medical staff warned the mother that had her child ingested the Diclofenac, she would have suffered vomiting.

The manufacturer of Smarties sweets, Nestlé UK, and the Greater Manchester Police were both informed of the incident and are currently investigating. In a statement, Nestlé told the Metro: “We are aware of this instance and have been speaking with the family involved. We have very strict controls in place to ensure the quality and safety of all of our products.”. As the box was opened after purchase and before it was given to the Stark family, there is no implication that the pill was included in the pack under Nestlé’s watch.


Alia Ropun/WhatsApp.

upday for Samsung https://www.upday.com/en/

“Girl, 5, rushed to hospital after pill found in box of Smarties” – Joe Roberts, Metro News/Associated Newspapers Limited (24 November 2018) https://metro.co.uk/2018/11/24/girl-5-rushed-to-hospital-after-pill-found-in-box-of-smarties-8174666/amp/


“Smarties British Candy” – William Jones, Flickr (28 February 2009) https://www.flickr.com/photos/fritish/3325010034


WE WILL FIND YOU!!: Nestlé’s GPS chocolate bar promotion

It is a cool summer’s morning. A random person enters a newsagents to buy a quick chocolate-based snack to quieten his/her growling stomach. He or she is no different to any other random person milling around the high street. He/she buys a Kit-Kat, tears through its wrapper and begins extracting the crunchy chocolate and wafer fingers. Suddenly the sky turns black as a dark military helicopter appears overhead. In amongst the sudden strong winds and flying crisp packets, streams of commandos rappel down and surround the random person. All hell seems to be breaking loose. A  commando kneels in front of the bemused chocaholic and opens a suitcase.

Is our hungry friend on Interpol’s most wanted list? Are they about to be enlisted into a top-secret government project to arrest a notorious cocoa bean smuggling kingpin in Ghana?  No, our friend has just won the princely sum of £10,000 (about US$16,200), thanks to Nestlé’s newest innovative cash giveaway promotion.

(c) Tegato

The manufacturer behind the well-known KitKat and KitKat Chunky chocolate bars has put out special products which have a GPS chip embedded in them. As soon as someone purchases and opens one of the limited-edition confectionary, the trackers at Nestle HQ are notified. Within 24 hours, the prize team will locate the winner and present them with a cheque for £10,000. The company’s UK communications manager, Graham Walker announced “Nestlé Confectionery is delighted to be first to market with this highly innovative GPS based promotion. We believe this promotion will particularly appeal…and thus driving incremental sales.” Six lucky bars will soon find themselves on the shelves of stores at undisclosed locations in the UK or the Republic of Ireland. Six lucky winners may soon find themselves with a second pay cheque. Or wondering if they are been stalked by an over-enthusiastic and rich The Bill fan.

In addition to the money giveaway, Nestle UK are also running a two week long billboard campaign and a series of specially-branded products. With some help from publicity agency JWT London, 3,000 posters which come with QR & NFC codes are being erected at bus stops. Scan these with a smartphone and you will be taken to a website where you can enter another competition via Facebook to win one of 2,000 £10 prizes. Treasure seekers can also find out if any GPS-enabled treats are still waiting to be found.

A prospective customer tries out the special QR codes on Nestle’s new GPS comp posters (c) Mashable

While it is a clever marketing strategy by Nestle, consumers must find it very creepy to simply open up a chocolate bar and then several hours later, find a bunch of strangers with eerily dodgy smiles knocking on their door , telling them that they have won a healthy amount of cash. In a country where there are estimated to be around 2 million CCTV cameras which catch individuals on their lenses 300 times a day in London alone, this approach by Nestle does feel like Big Brother gone mad.

Advertising agencies are watching Nestlé’s development with interest. Agency PSFK described the GPS giveaway as being a real-life Willy Wonka competition. In the book “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” by acclaimed children’s author Roald Dahl, the reclusive chocolate entrepreneur Willy Wonka places golden tickets inside his chocolate bars offering their finders a tour of his magical factory.

Other branding managers are more doubting. Danie Gomez-Ortigoza of the blog Branding Worth Spreading comments that “There’s money, there’s chocolate, but there is no story behind the promotion. There is no magic.  Willy Wonka and the chocolate factory made us dream, while Nestle is simply doing an average promotion using GPS technology that aims to build short term sales, but doesn’t do much for the brand long term.” Perhaps from a marketing point of view, Nestle have a ‘one-trick pony’ that may eventually buck and leave them back where they started, with no real impact on their sales. As it is, already a sizeable amount of companies do cash prizes/giveaways of varying degrees, and it is a tried-and-trusted form of product marketing in developed countries, appealing to consumers’ base desires for wealth and prosperity.

Nestlé’s GPS money giveaway certainly can make someone’s dream come true, especially in these days of austerity. That amount of money could mean a fun family holiday, or some badly-needed home improvements. Most people would just love the chance to acquire a lump sum of useful cash, as the popularity of the National Lottery can testify.  However this could well be a corporate invasion of people’s privacy, and publicity they do not want. When you have pensioners being swindled or robbed by cold-callers and a government that has nothing seemingly better to do than know every detail about you and track your every move, would the fact that now a private profit making organisation can do that with relative ease assuage worries that Orwell’s dystopian world is rapidly becoming reality…?. It is probably advisable to watch for flashing lights and antennae the next time you pick up a Hovis loaf…

The Nestle ‘We Will Find You” prize giveaway will run on selected and marked KitKat, KitKat Chunky, Yorkie and Aero bars only in the British Isles.

CLICK picture below to view Nestlé’s advert that appeared recently on British television:

(c) PocketGPSWorld





CCTV User Group – March 2011 from Politics.co.uk LINK

“Investigation: A sharp focus on CCTV” – Heather Brooke (Wired.co.uk/Conde Nast Digital) LINK

“We will find you – Nestle” – Danie Gomez-Ortigoza (Branding Worth Spreading) LINK

“We will find you’ marketing gone wild: Candy bars that guarantee stalkers” – Ms Smith (Network World) LINK

“Nestlé runs GPS-fitted chocolate bars competition” – Nick Batten (Campaign/Haymarket Business Media) LINK

“Nestle Embeds GPS In Chocolate Bars For Real-Life ‘Golden Ticket’ Contest” – Emma Hutchings (PSFK) LINK

“Kit Kat’s ‘We Will Find You’ campaign – GPS-tracked chocolate bars (Chocolate & Anxiety)” Autodespair LINK