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Encinitas

All Halloween candy was removed from Ralphs supermarkets in Southern California Monday after some suspicious-looking capsules were found among the candy sold in the Encinitas store, a Ralphs spokesman said.

Ralphs Senior Vice President Jan Grey said the capsules turned out to be a mixture of orange Kool-Aid and sugar, but Halloween candy in all 130 Ralphs stores was pulled shortly after the pills were found.

“We routinely pull products from the shelves to make sure the customer is safeguarded,” Grey said of the voluntary recalls. “But in a large majority of the cases, there’s not much smoke behind the fire.”

Grey said a mother who bought the candy on Saturday--a plastic tube filled with orange and black jelly beans and a top shaped like a witch’s head--returned the product to the store at 9 a.m. Monday, complaining that she found three red capsules among the jelly beans.

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Gary Stephany, director of the environmental division of the County’s Department of Health Services, said the top of the candy container comes off easily, so it would be easy to tamper with the product. “Anyone could put anything they wanted in the container,” Stephany said. “It’s really a mistake to sell things that way.”


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