Ben Leonard of White Oak, Texas, told KLTV-TV that his wife found the fragment in a package of Walmart's Great Value brand frozen mixed vegetables. The family ate the vegetables before they figured out the fragment was likely a rat's jaw.
"She thought it was a big chunk of corn cob or something and the further I got into it the more I thought, 'Oh no, this is rat's jaw!'" Leonard told KLTV.
Leonard said he reported his find to the local Walmart, where the vegetables were purchased, and he told KLTV they directed him to the manufacturer. Walmart did not respond to Slashfood's request for comment.
In an e-mail, Leonard told Slashfood the company held a conference call with him when he first reported his discovery, then immediately turned contact over to their insurance company.
"They did not ask to examine what I had. I told them I was willing for anyone to examine the small chunk of bone but I was not going to send it any where," he wrote. Leonard said he offered to accompany the object so that Walmart could test it. "It would be so easy to say either it was lost, destroyed in testing with incomplete results, or it tested negative," he wrote.
He told the station the manufacturer asked him if the object might be a piece of plastic conveyor belt.
"I said, 'No, this is dark and it's got roots coming out of it. I know what plastic looks like,'" he told KLTV-TV. After being transferred several times, he said the manufacturer's insurance company offered him $500, which he declined.
"I would like to see them more responsive to the customer," he said.
Leonard told KLTV he plans to take the fragment to be analyzed, and he wonders where the rest of the rat wound up.
"There was a whole rat and so somebody else has got the rest of it," he said.
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