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It must be ingestable and the victim can't detect by taste or smell, though easily detectable in an autopsy, if performed, but mimics regular illness so the first few deaths won't be autopsied (Due to being a Third world country that doesn't autopsy everyone)

The victim population needs to fear their next meal after the news is let out.

The delivery medium should be butter or milk so should incorporate well, be lethal in small doses and not curdle.

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    $\begingroup$ WorldBuilding.SE: putting people on watch lists since c.2012. $\endgroup$ – F1Krazy Sep 26 '17 at 14:50
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    $\begingroup$ That's some pretty specific information you're seeking. Perhaps it's best to simply invent a poison for the purposes of your novel? For one, there's nothing you can mass produce, and insert in the dairy supply of an entire population, such that there's an actual, societal wide panic about its presence in their food. Second, I am mildly uncomfortable with that sort of information floating around on WB SE. $\endgroup$ – AndreiROM Sep 26 '17 at 14:51
  • $\begingroup$ @F1Krazy Sign me up, poisons are a favourite subject of mine for some strange reason. $\endgroup$ – Ash Sep 26 '17 at 17:06
  • $\begingroup$ @F1Krazy As always: only asking for "the story", you know? $\endgroup$ – Secespitus Sep 26 '17 at 17:40
  • $\begingroup$ My story is set in present day so can't invent. It is about how lack of resources in Brazil and public perception of homeless people are roadblocks in the pursuit of justice $\endgroup$ – ChibiHoshi Sep 27 '17 at 4:44
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Castor oil beans, you can extract ricin from those, a very small amount when ingested is deadly and it can be mixed with food and drinks.

People can get sick with different illnesses because of it since it affects the immune system, and take days to die.

It would be hard to detect at first, but is easily discovered in autopsy.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ricin

Plus, in some regions the plant grows in the wild, so no need to grow it in a garden.

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    $\begingroup$ Primary damage from ingested Ricin is actually to the gut not the immune system so the symptoms will actually be pretty uniform. If you were sticking people with intravenous doses then they'd have diverse symptoms from immuno-deficiency. $\endgroup$ – Ash Sep 26 '17 at 17:04
  • $\begingroup$ @Ash beautyepic.com/castor-oil-side-effects and estilomania.ru/sade-e-bem-estar/ingredientes-e-aplicaes/… and that's from the oil, not ricin powder. $\endgroup$ – shieldedtulip Sep 26 '17 at 17:37
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    $\begingroup$ Yeah I'd rather go with this, where it says quite specifically "By ingestion, the pathology of ricin is largely restricted to the gastrointestinal tract". Castor Oil has only the tiniest amounts of Ricin, parts per billion or less, and that's only if it hasn't been heat treated properly for some reason. $\endgroup$ – Ash Sep 26 '17 at 17:42
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    $\begingroup$ Awesome. This would work. My story is set in present day so can't invent. It is about how lack of resources in Brazil and public perception of homeless people are roadblocks in the pursuit of justice. My killer will be delivering dairy products and hold a grudge because his family lost fallow land to the "Landless Movement" which is a socialistic movement in Brazil that appropriates land that is considered nonproductive and gives it to people so they can grow food and have a cheap/free home $\endgroup$ – ChibiHoshi Sep 27 '17 at 4:59
  • $\begingroup$ @ChibiHoshi - should've specified here and now and in Brazil in the questions. All sorts of nasties are possible with the pharmucopia of the jungle at your disposal, and some lessons remembered from your great grandmother when you were just a young'un, spending the summer/winter/whatever with her in her small jungle village, learning the Old Ways... $\endgroup$ – ivanivan Jul 9 '18 at 21:28
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You could imagine a criminal seeding Ageratina altissima in pastures (possibly hybridized, as the plant is pre-adapted to mild temperate climates) or mixing it to feedstock.

The mixing can be done anywhere the feedstock is handled, and the plant is an infestant weed; at worst, it could be cultivate in a glasshouse. Seeding on the field, though, has the potential of making it all look accidental.

When ingested by cows, the toxin tremetol accumulates in the milk. The cow's behaviour changes, but not so much that a person unfamiliar with the symptoms would notice anything clearly amiss. Milk taste and texture remain the same and curdling does not occur.

Consumption of the milk results in intoxication with high probability of death (in malnourished individuals, death is a certainty):

The sickness has been called puking fever, sick stomach, the slows, and the trembles [...] In man, the symptoms are loss of appetite, listlessness, weakness, vague pains, muscle stiffness, vomiting, abdominal discomfort, severe constipation, bad breath, and finally coma. Recovery is slow and may never be complete, but more often an attack is fatal.

However, I do not think that "fearing your next meal" can be achieved if the poison is contained in the milk. Association with food is difficult in the first place, because consumption is not immediately followed by death, so people initially would not fear their meals because they wouldn't know the poison is there. Once the association is made, though, zeroing in on milk will be quite immediate, and at that point all that it's needed is to avoid milk and dairy products.

You would need some other reason why milk and dairy products are an obligatory food - either that or starve. In that case, yes, people would fear their meal since they wouldn't know whether or not it's poisonous.

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  • $\begingroup$ Wow that sounds like a nasty way to go. $\endgroup$ – Ash Sep 26 '17 at 18:11
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There are plenty

Potassium overdose can appear like a heart attack and is essential in the body. I believe it's odorless and tasteless.

It can be extracted from bananas and or easily bought from a pharmacy.

Because its critical throughout the body it wouldn't be easily detected in an autopsy though blood work would eventually reveal elevated levels of it.

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Ricin, Ricin is your friend, in this case but never in reality, it's lethal in tiny doses around, one milligram per kilogram of poisonee, approximately .1 of a gram will kill a 100kg human (that's when ingested, if introduced intravenously it's about 500 times worse). Ricin can safely and easily be extracted from Caster Bean mash after the oil has been removed, literally just add water. Caster oil has been used since at least 2000BC the Caster plant, Ricinus, grows wild and in a vast range of climates. Ricin is not very fat soluble so milk would be a reasonable carrier but butter not so much. Ricin is however tasteless, colourless and odorless though so any food works, making fear of your next meal really very much applicable once word goes around that it's being used as the poison of choice. When ingested the primary damage is to the stomach and gut so primary symptoms mimic severe food poisoning, even at autopsy the ulceration need not be recognised for what it is but can easily be spotted if poisoning is suspected.

For the record my knowing/sharing this much isn't as bad as it might seem, I'm personally fascinated by the subject so I know a little more off the top of my head than most but a little google goes a long way with this topic.

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