NBC 9 in Texas reported on Tuesday morning that the poor kid was sipping on a 20-ounce bottle of Dr Pepper in his car seat on Sunday while his grandparents sat up front. Kayden, the child, didn't finish the bottle and handed it back to his grandparents. When they later re-opened the bottle, they discovered there was a rodent floating inside.
Concerned about the potential dangerous and generally disgusting stuff their grandson might have ingested while sipping on rat soda, Graves took Kayden to the pediatrician where blood and urine samples taken. NBC 9 further reported that the pediatrician's office contacted the CDC and the state of Texas.
Dr Pepper was made aware of the incident and told NBC 9 that they would like to obtain the bottle for running tests, but the family reportedly wants to hold on to it in order to run some tests of their own.
In a statement provided to Complex, the Dr Pepper Snapple Group said,
Nothing is more important to us than the safety and well-being of our consumers. We take all consumer complaints very seriously, and we are very concerned about the call we received yesterday from Mr. Graves about this issue. This is a single, isolated incident, and we’re working hard to investigate and resolve the matter with this consumer.
The controls and safeguards we have in our production facilities make it virtually impossible for any foreign object to get into a container at any stage of the bottling process. All of our containers are covered on pallets until the moment they are ready to fill. Once on our high-speed filling lines, bottles are turned upside-down and rinsed out before they are quickly filled and capped.
Based on the production code we received from Mr. Graves yesterday evening, the bottle in question was filled during the early afternoon of April 26 at our Houston plant as part of a six-hour production run. Records indicate no stoppages in production at the time this bottle was on the filling line. In addition, a City of Houston health inspector was in the plant that very day on a routine inspection, which included among other tasks reviewing pest control measures, and the inspector saw no issues.
As we investigate this incident, we are hoping the consumer will provide us with the bottle so we can have the contents analyzed by a qualified independent forensics laboratory and more completely understand how this might have happened. This lab can determine when and how a rodent might have gotten into the container, when it died and even examine the contents of its stomach Unfortunately, the consumer has so far declined this request.
For the love of rats and children's stomachs everywhere, perhaps double check your next bottle of soda before taking a swig. It's safe to assume nobody wants to see this incident repeated.