Yorktown man believes he found dead rodent inside his peanut butter jar

Posted at 3:47 PM, Aug 28, 2019


YORKTOWN, Va. - Jacob Fisher says he bought a jar of JIF Creamy Peanut Butter in May of this year, and since then he has made dozens of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for himself and his 2-year-old toddler - until a few weeks ago.

"I'm making my daughter, Azalea, a sandwich and I'm getting these quarter- or nickle-size spots that wouldn't flake out. I just thought it was dried peanut butter," Fisher told News 3.

So, he gave his daughter a sandwich and then made one for himself. And that's when he gagged.

"I ran and grabbed the sandwich from her, and all I could see were little legs and paws and a torso is what made sense to me," he said.

At his home on Wednesday, Fisher showed us what he claims is a small, deteriorating mouse inside the jar. He has kept the jar and the half-eaten, half-made sandwich in his freezer for weeks.

"If you look up close, you can see there is a finger, there is a hand, leg, backbone and a head," he pointed out with a toothpick.

Fisher says he unsealed the jar before using it, so he is adamant and claims that the rodent must have made its way into the JIF jar during the manufacturing process.

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"We weren't dying like we can't move, but it was like we kept getting indigestion after we ate the sandwiches, like acid reflux where you just gotta sit down a few hours," he explained.

A physician hasn't confirmed Fisher's claims, as he has yet to see one.

"But I am concerned there are diseases. I have no idea if we have a disease; I think rats carry like 30 diseases," he said.

Fisher says he called JIF, owned by Smucker's, right after the incident in early August. They said they would send him an email with postage to send the items back. They never did.

He told News 3 he called numerous times before finally getting an email yesterday with the information on how to send back the product.

JIF sent us this statement as well:

Thanks for contacting us and for doing your due diligence. We certainly don’t feel there’s a story here. Below is some pertinent info we think you’ll find helpful:

  • In our manufacturing process, the jars are processed upside down, air is forcefully blown into them, then they are flipped right side up, immediately filled with peanut butter and sealed. We do this to essentially eliminate the chance a foreign object enters our products.
  • Even with this manufacturing process in place, our Quality Assurance teams run through a variety of additional steps to ensure the products meet our quality standards. If any abnormality (i.e. loose label) is noted, the product is not shipped to a retail store.
  • We have spoken with Mr. Fisher multiple times and in each instance have attempted to move the discussion forward to a point of resolution. At this time, Mr. Fisher hasn’t even provided us a UPC number or production code so we can confirm the specific type of product he is referencing. Nor has he provided pictures of the product or used the prepaid mailing label we provided to send in the product for inspection by our Quality Assurance professionals.

We want to make sure everyone that buys our products enjoys them so when we hear that a consumer is not happy with one of our products, we take it seriously. We were sorry to hear that Mr. Fisher’s family is not feeling well but have no reason to believe our product is to blame. We’re hopeful that Mr. Fisher will take the next step of providing the basic information we’ve requested, including sending in the jar with the prepaid label we provided

I asked Fisher how the general public should believe he didn't plant the alleged rodent in the jar.

"Do every single test you possibly can, every single one. Put me on a polygraph, it don't matter," he said. "I 100% know for a fact that rat or that mouse has been in that thing since it was manufactured."

Fisher says he wants and apology from JIF and action taken.

"I'm scared to buy anything. It's like I double-think everything now, like, 'How can this get in my jar, and what is safe and what is not?'" said Fisher.

He says he is consulting with personal injury attorneys to see if he should file a lawsuit. He says he will soon send off the items to the company.