A 25-YEAR-OLD woman was asked for ID to buy teaspoons from a Sussex supermarket because staff feared she would use them to take drugs.

Elinor Zuke was told she needed to prove that she was 18 to buy the £1.19 six-pack of spoons from Sainsbury’s in Crawley Avenue, Crawley.

Miss Zuke, who works for trade magazine The Grocer, which is based in Crawley, was stopped from buying the spoons at a self-service checkout at the store.

An automatic alert flashed up on the checkout screen saying her age needed to be continue before she could purchase the cutlery.

Miss Zuke said a shop worker then intervened and told her it was because of the risk they could be used to take drugs.

Heroin addicts often use teaspoons to heat the drug and prepare it.

Miss Zuke said: “I could not understand what the problem was. When the supervisor said it was because they could be used as drug paraphernalia I was completely shocked.

“I would imagine the vast majority of spoons sold by Sainsbury’s are used for nothing more nefarious than stirring a cup of tea.”

A Sainsbury’s spokeswoman said: “We’re very sorry for any confusion that this error caused.

“Our Think 25 policy is designed to ensure that age-related products are sold safely and colleagues are trained to ensure they enforce our policy correctly.

“It is not our policy to ID people when buying spoons and there is no mention of ‘drug paraphernalia’ anywhere in the Think 25 training or policy.

“We do ask for proof of age when people buy knives and the self-scan system recognised the spoon’s code as one for a knife and therefore triggered the alert.

“The problem was immediately rectified and won’t happen again.”

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