Squirrel banned from Finnish supermarket
Friday, August 24, 2007
Health authorities in Finland have banned a squirrel from visiting a SIWA supermarket in the central Finnish city of Jyväskylä.
The squirrel had previously been allowed in by the store's manager, Irene Lindroos, where it would enter daily via the open front door, and help itself to a Kinder Egg chocolate from the confectionery section. Once it had one, it would carry it back outside to eat it.
The appearance of the squirrel regularly amused customers, often with the effect of causing them to purchase Kinder Eggs themselves.
However, as of today, the squirrel has been barred from entering. "It's a decision of the health authorities. The door of the store has remained open all summer, but now it will be shut," said an employee of the supermarket.
The squirrel had received widespread press attention earlier in the year. "I named it the Kinder-squirrel, after the treats. It always goes after them, other sweets do not seem to interest it as much," Irene Lindroos had said at the time. The sweets contain a small plastic toy, and Lindroos had said "It removes the foil carefully, eats the chocolate and leaves the store with the toy".
The squirrel was banned by the authorities because they decided that the terms of the Food Act meant it could not remain there. Lindroos told reporters the squirrel had become very popular with customers, saying that almost everyone who entered the store had asked about it. She added that one customer had made a donation of 30 Euros (41 US) to fund the squirrel's continuing chocolate-taking.
- Agence France-Presse. "Free treat is over for sweet-toothed squirrel" — news.com.au, August 24, 2007
- "Party over for Finland's chocoholic squirrel" — NewsRoom Finland, August 24, 2007
- Reuters. "Sweet-toothed squirrel's Kinder Surprise visits" — News.com.au, August 7, 2007