As a personal injury lawyer, I often receive inquiries about what I call the “glass in the tuna,” namely, an instance where a person opens a can of food and finds a piece of broken glass or an insect inside. Does finding a piece of glass in the canned tuna mean that the consumer is entitled to an award of money instantly from the manufacturer or company?
Initially, it is not always clear how the glass or insect got inside the can, or how the product became contaminated. If the can was clearly sealed before being delivered and placed on the shelf by the grocer, then it probably means a claim against the manufacturer alone. If it is possible though that the presence of the glass might have been due to the act of the grocer, then the claim might be against the grocer, or against both the grocer and manufacturer. Identifying the proper defendant can be challenging.
More importantly, though, is assessing the damages of the person who opened the can. Was he or she injured in any way, apart from being shocked by seeing broken glass in the tuna? Was the person hospitalized or required surgery as a result? Did the consumer suffer a loss of income? Absent of significant injury, the claim is probably not one worth pursuing via a court claim, given that the Courts in Canada would likely assess damages in such cases at a very low level.
Glass in the tuna does not always equal significant financial compensation to the consumer. However, if you find yourself in a “glass in the tuna” scenario, contact us so that we may assess your personal injury case on its merits and provide you with the legal assistance you need.