WASTE: Des Barritt had to take meat off the shelf following the PFAS water scare.
WASTE: Des Barritt had to take meat off the shelf following the PFAS water scare. TAHLIA STEHBENS

Bundy butcher recalls his PFAS 'nightmare' one year on

ONE year on from the PFAS drinking water contamination at Svensson Heights a butcher is still having "nightmares".

In April last year authorities called an urgent media conference after the Dr Mays Rd bore returned PFAS levels higher than the national average.

The town water supply was turned off immediately and hundreds of households were told to run their tap water for some time before consuming it.

Queensland Health advised there was no immediate risk to human health.

Per-and Poly-fluoroalkyl Substances is a group of man-made chemicals that have been widely used since the 1950s in household and industrial products that resist heat, oil, stains, grease and water.

Bundaberg Regional Council received confirmation on April 12 that water supplied to customers from the Dr Mays Road bore exceeded the guidance value.

Des Barritt's butcher shop was one of the businesses affected by the contamination and in a "better to be safe than sorry" stance he discarded all of his meat products.

The meat cost $6300 and came to a shelf value of about $11,500.

"Luckily there wasn't a downturn in business and new customers showed their support," Mr Barritt said.

"But we still have nightmares about it."

Mr Barritt said at the time, he found out about the contamination through a customer who had seen it on social media.

"I wasn't sure how much of our meat was contaminated - I went all over the state to find answers," he said.

"It was just crazy - I couldn't go home and switch off."

Mr Barritt said his insurer paid out the cost of the meat but the business ran at a loss.

Now 12 months down the track, a PFAS National Environment Management Plan is under way.

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Yesterday a council spokesman said the council had continued to monitor drinking water bores on a regular basis and there has been no further detection of PFAS.