Deputy sheriff who cooked pig at fundraiser is sued

According to, a Yuba County (CA) sheriff’s dispatcher is still dealing with the effects of salmonellosis following eating undercooked or mishandled pork at a luau fundraiser in 2010.
The dispatcher, Cynthia Boutt, alledges in the suit,
A number of people were sickened at the luau, which was held Aug. 21, 2010.
Named as defendants are the association, Garner Ranch, which supplied the pig, and Deputy Neal Houston, who cooked it, according to the suit, which asks for unspecified damages.
Community dinners and fundraisers have traditionally been the source of foodborne illness outbreaks in the past. These events are often held at temporary sites and staffed by volunteers.Organizers and volunteers can be well-intentioned but may not employ risk reduction steps when cooking for a crowd. Cooking large batches of food safely (especially while using unfamiliar equipment) can be problematic. Then throw in cooling, transport, reheating, poor handwashing facilities and a festive event can turn bad. Earlier this year, an upstate New York Fire Department’s  banquet was  implicated as the source of a foodborne illness outbreak. At least 50 attendees, many of them firefighters, reported nausea, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting the day after attending the event.

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About Ben Chapman

Dr. Ben Chapman is a professor and food safety extension specialist at North Carolina State University. As a teenager, a Saturday afternoon viewing of the classic cable movie, Outbreak, sparked his interest in pathogens and public health. With the goal of less foodborne illness, his group designs, implements, and evaluates food safety strategies, messages, and media from farm-to-fork. Through reality-based research, Chapman investigates behaviors and creates interventions aimed at amateur and professional food handlers, managers, and organizational decision-makers; the gate keepers of safe food. Ben co-hosts a biweekly podcast called Food Safety Talk and tries to further engage folks online through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and, maybe not surprisingly, Pinterest. Follow on Twitter @benjaminchapman.