Business Insider reports that last week, news broke that Chipotle had closed a restaurant in Sterling, Virginia, following multiple reports of customers getting sick after eating there. Chipotle’s stock plummeted and more than 130 people claimed they had become ill after eating at the restaurant.
“We have isolated the failure that occurred,” Ells said in a call with investors on Tuesday.
According to Ells, the Sterling, Virginia restaurant had failed to comply with Chipotle’s safety regulations, specifically allowing an employee to work while sick.
“We made it clear to the entire company that we have a zero-tolerance policy” for not following food-safety measures, Ells said. “When followed, they work perfectly.“
When biology and humans are involved, nothing is perfect.
Seriously, this dude who runs thousands of restaurants hasn’t looked at the fail-safe measures used by engineering firms for decades?
Another nosestretcher: Ells told reporters on a conference call Tuesday, “We are the only major restaurant to have HACCP.”
That would be news to McDonalds, Disney, and dozens of others.
In describing the norovirus outbreak this past week, Ells placed the blame squarely on the individual restaurant, saying “norovirus is unrelated to our food supply chain.”
How do you know?
Coke-head Mark Crumpacker, chief marketing and development officer at Chipotle, said: “We conducted a thorough investigation and it appears that someone in the restaurant leadership did not adhere to our food safety protocol. We believe someone worked while sick.”
The lack of compliance at the Sterling restaurant doesn’t seem to be an isolated incident. According to some Chipotle employees at other locations, store managers have encouraged workers to not to follow certain regulations, forcing them to work while sick and lie when filling out food safety sheets.
In light of the Sterling outbreak, Chipotle has made it clear that there will be “severe” consequences when in-store employees do not follow safety procedures. The company is launching additional training and communications efforts to ensure that each location follows national policies, such as sending sick workers home.
“Compliance with our procedures is nonnegotiable,” Ells said.
That’s all nice, and probably because Chipotle Mexican Grill received a follow-up subpoena on July 19, requesting information:
* Chipotle Mexican Grill says follow-up subpoena sought information related to illness incidents associated with a single Chipotle restaurant in Sterling, Virginia
* Chipotle Mexican Grill says it intends to continue to fully cooperate in the investigation
* Chipotle – sales trends in H2 of July 2017 have been adversely impacted by news regarding norovirus incident in co’s restaurant in Sterling, Virginia.
But it was just an accident.