As reported by local media:

Police investigating B.C. poison-turkey scare News Staff
Updated: Wed. Dec. 24 2003 11:54 PM ET

The RCMP has been called in to investigate a turkey tampering scare in the Vancouver area after the Canada Safeway supermarket chain received threatening letters from an animal-rights group.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency was also notified of the letters attributed to the Animal Liberation Front, which claim activists thawed several frozen turkeys and injected them with arsenic.

Safeway spokesperson David Ryzebol said there was no evidence any turkeys were tampered with -- but the grocery chain was asking customers to check any frozen birds bought since Dec. 1.

Customers are being advised to look for tears or punctures in the turkeys' packaging, or chunks of ice that may indicate the turkey was refrozen.

Safeway said anyone with concerns should bring the birds back to the store.

Claims of turkey tampering have unfortunately become an almost semi-annual holiday tradition in British Columbia. This marks the fourth time in 10 years animal-rights militants have made such claims.

RCMP Cpl. Dale Carr said whoever sent the letters could be charged with mischief.

In December 1999, Thrifty Foods, a Vancouver Island supermarket chain, got an anonymous call claiming fresh turkey parts had been injected with poison.

In December 1994, thousands of unhappy diners were forced to return turkeys in the Vancouver area when notes from the so-called Animals Rights Militia claimed turkeys at Safeway and Save-On Food stores had been dosed with rat poison.

The following year, turkey farmers lost thousands of dollars at Thanksgiving after members of a self-proclaimed animal rights' group issued a warning they had poisoned turkeys.

In all cases, no evidence of tampering was ever found and supermarkets increased their security in 1996.