Marks and Spencer has apologised after it put bunches of daffodils alongside spring onions on a show with an indication saying ‘eat properly’.
Earlier than they bloom, the flowers are simple to mistake for a vegetable – however could be very dangerous if eaten.
All elements of a daffodil comprise the poisonous chemical lycorine, which might trigger signs like stomach ache, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea.
Botanist James Wong, who posted an image of the show on Twitter, mentioned they’re ‘the one most typical explanation for plant-based poisoning’.
Tagging the M&S Twitter account, he wrote: ‘I don’t need to get any employees in hassle. However you want higher coaching asap.’
The skilled, who’s a Gardeners’ Query Time panelist and presenter of Secrets and techniques of Your Personal Meals, added: ‘Daffodils are full of microscopic crystals, so biting into one is like swallowing a field of tiny needles.
Whereas it’s extra frequent – and harmful – for individuals to eat the onion-like bulbs, which have a better focus of lycorine, there have been circumstances prior to now of sickness attributable to consuming the stems.
In 2012, individuals in Bristol’s Chinese language group have been warned to not eat daffodil stalks and leaves after 10 individuals have been hospitalised for extreme vomiting.
A press release from the Well being Safety Company mentioned they might have mistaken the flower for a chive utilized in Chinese language cooking, and suggested supermarkets to place warnings in English, Cantonese and Mandarin on their labels.
Three years later, Prof Paul Cosford, the director for well being safety at Public Well being England, wrote to supermarkets warning them of the hazards of displaying daffodils close to meals.
He wrote: ‘As I’m positive you might be conscious, daffodils are harmful if eaten and poisoning can happen in consequence.
‘We’re asking you, together with all different main supermarkets, to make sure that daffodils, each the bulbs from which they sprout and the minimize selection too, are displayed properly away from the produce or fruit and vegetable space.’
A spokesperson for Marks and Spencer mentioned: ‘Buyer security is our precedence and our British daffodils are clearly labelled with an on-pack warning that they don’t seem to be protected to eat.
‘This was a real error in certainly one of our shops and as a precaution, we’re reminding all shops to ensure the flowers are displayed correctly.
‘We apologise for any confusion prompted.’
Final yr, a city council in Cornwall got here below hearth after it minimize down 1,000 daffodils subsequent to a play park as a consequence of fears kids might eat them and get sick.
Get in contact with our information group by emailing us at [email protected].
For extra tales like this, examine our information web page.