Taco Bell to turn Canadian restaurant into airbnb

You might be a fan of a Taco Bell’s food, but would you sleep in one?

taco-bell-airbnbThe fast food chain is transforming one of its restaurants in Ontario, Canada into an Airbnb.

There will be two bunk beds, couches and a big screen TV, as well as a “Taco Bell butler” for the winner and three friends.

The one night-only contest aims to promote Taco Bell’s “Steak Doubledillas,” a quesadilla with double the amount of steak.

Vaccines work: Oahu hepatitis A outbreak up to 74 cases

KHON 2 reports that according to the state Department of Health, there are 74 confirmed cases of hepatitis A in the current outbreak.

hepatits-a-vaccinationSince the last update on July 12, 2016, HDOH has identified 22 new cases of hepatitis A, 26 have required hospitalization.

All of the cases are residents of Oahu with the exception of two individuals who now live on the islands of Hawaii and Maui, but were on Oahu during their exposure period.

The onset of illness for the cases have ranged between 6/12/2016 and 7/14/2016.

The source of the outbreak remains under investigation. Identifying the source of infection is a challenge due to the long incubation period of the disease. This makes it difficult for patients to accurately recall the foods consumed and locations visited during the period when infection could have taken place.

The site also identifies two restaurants where employees tested positive for the virus: Baskin-Robbins in Waikele and Taco Bell in Waipio.


I’m no Yogi Berra, but this Taco Bell worker caught with hands down his pants

There’s an old food safety saying: gloves give a false sense of security, and it doesn’t matter whether wearing gloves or not, you scratch your ass, bacteria are going to move.

taco.bell.2OK, it’s my saying.

Been making people cringe for 20 years.

But now, because everyone has a camera, there’s photographic proof.

A customer at an Ohio Taco Bell noticed one of the employees behind the counter had his skillful taco-making hands inside his pants, brushing up against his backside.

The customer posted the picture to Taco Bell through Facebook, and according to Fox 8, the employee was identified, then fired.

Taco Bell said:

“This is completely unacceptable and has no place in our restaurants. Our franchisee took immediate action, and has terminated the employee and retraining the entire staff. We want customers to know that the person in the photo was never in contact with the food, and that the Health Department inspected the restaurant and approved its operations.”

They couldn’t fire the guy fast enough, though, as the memes quickly started pouring into Taco Bell’s site.

If someone tried ordering a Choco Taco, this guy was definitely delivering.

But instead of the corporate apologetics, Taco Bell could have found a more fitting use for its PR thingies.

RIP Yogi. King of the soundbite

yogi.bera.sep.115Before athletes were required to have a Facebook, Twitter and Instagram in addition to their busy schedule of pre-, post- and mid-game interviews, Berra’s prowess with a funny quip and quick soundbite rivaled his skill on the field.

Lines like “It’s déjà all over again” have bcome so ubiquitous that they simply seem to have sprung, fully formed, from the American vernacular.

1, When you come to a fork in the road, take it.

  1. Ninety percent of the game is half mental.
  2. You wouldn’t have won if we’d beaten you.
  3. Make a game plan and stick to it. Unless it’s not working.
  4. We made too many wrong mistakes.
  5. Why buy good luggage, you only use it when you travel.
  6. All pitchers are liars or crybabies.
  7. Even Napoleon had his Watergate.
  8. If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be.
  9. Take it with a grin of salt.

Entire publications have said less with many more words.



SC Taco Bell patron assaulted for not saying ‘excuse me’ after burping

Sorenne can burp and fart all she likes. As long as she says, excuse me.

Our walks home from school are usually populated with, “excuse me, I terrance.phillip.fartfarted.”

It’s that manners thing (and she is part Canadian, like Terence and Phillip).

According to The Braiser, 20-year-old Isaiah Morris was chilling in a South Carolina Taco Bell booth, eating with a friend, when an unknown male came up and asked if he “had just belched and not said excuse me.”

Morris then asked the man to repeat what he had just said, and the guy (allegedly) threw a chair at him, (allegedly) started choking him, and (allegedly) tried to head-butt him.

At that point a seventeen year old girl working behind the counter broke up the fight and got the aggressor to back off. He drove away, the police got only first-hand reports, and the security cameras probably didn’t capture the altercation.

I can’t embed the video, but the belching contest from 1984’s Revenge of the Nerds is available at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kDdbg_Q-LMI. Wasn’t John Goodman cute?

irony can be ironic; taco licker axed

Taco Bell, the largest U.S. Mexican fast food chain and host of several E. coli O157:H7 outbreaks via lettuce, said that a franchisee has suspended — and “is in the process of terminating” — the restaurant employee whose photo taco-bell-lickingshowing him licking a stack of empty taco shells went viral earlier this week. The person who took the photo no longer works for Taco Bell.

According to USA Today, red-faced Taco Bell executives had to try to explain to a skeptical public the circumstances behind the embarrassing photo. On Monday, the franchisee informed Taco Bell corporate that both employees were no longer with Taco Bell.

Never mind that the shells were never sold, but were only provided for workers to practice making the new line of Cool Ranch Doritos Locos Tacos. The shells were thrown out after use. “This is standard operating procedure and our franchisee confirmed this protocol,” says Taco Bell’s statement.

But many consumers viewing the photo had to think otherwise. So Taco Bell had to act quickly. “One of the smartest things a brand can do is to respond as quickly and intelligently as possible,” says Erika Napoletano, a brand strategy consultant.

The photo was taken way back in March at a Taco Bell restaurant in Ridgecrest, Calif., north of Los Angeles It was taken for an internal contest to supposedly show employees enjoying their first bite of the new product. Things went haywire when the photo, which was never submitted for the contest, ending up being posted on the employee’s Facebook page.

Not only was this a violation of company policy, but the worker also violated Taco Bell’s food handling procedures, the company says.

Daughters, whatever you post on social media stays somewhere; Taco Bell investigating taco-licking photo

Hours after many Consumerist readers woke up to the photo of a Taco Bell employee rubbing his tongue across a stack of taco shells, the fast food chain has released a statement regarding the caught-on-camera incident.

In a statement to Consumerist, a rep for the Bell writes:

Nothing is more important than the safety of our customers and team members, and we have strict food handling procedures and zero tolerance for taco-bell-lickingany violations. When we learned of the situation we immediately contacted this restaurant’s leadership and although we believe it is a prank and the food was not served to customers, we are conducting a full-scale investigation and will be taking swift action against those involved.

In the comments on the photo posted to the Taco Bell Facebook page, some are defending the employee in the photo, with one person saying he knows the employee and “I know that he is not dumb enough to lick a stack of taco shells and then serve them to the public… There is a 99% chance that that stack of Tacos was getting thrown out, as in: getting thrown away, so it’s not as if they were going to be served to anyone.”

Another woman claims to be the photographer of the image, writing — in all caps so you know she’s serious — “we weren’t even in the food area! If you can see in the back it’s the soda machines!…You’re opinion doesn’t even matter because this happened a long time ago! Dammit!”


Food safety frontlines fruit and veggies edition; baby steps in marketing food safety?

Produce accounts for 46% of the estimated 48 million foodborne illnesses reported annually by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Leafy greens account are estimated to account for 41% of the produce-related illnesses.

With piles of fresh strawberries beckoning consumers at markets and stores this season, an alliance of a retailer, fruit growers and farm workers has strawberrybegun a program to promote healthy produce and improve working conditions.

Stephanie Strom and Steven Greenhouse of the New York Times report under Oxfam America’s Equitable Food Initiative, unfolding along neatly planted rows of berries at the Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce’s Sierra Farm in Moss Landing, Calif., is an effort to prevent the types of bacterial outbreaks of salmonella, listeria or E. coli that have sickened consumers who ate contaminated cantaloupes, spinach or other produce.

One of the workers, Valentin Esteban, is on the front lines of the new effort, having gone through a training program that helps him avoid practices that lead to possible bacterial contamination that could undermine the safety and quality of the strawberries he picks.

In exchange, Andrew & Williamson is providing Mr. Esteban better pay and working conditions than many migrant farmworkers receive, a base pay of $9.05 an hour versus the $8 average in the area.

With Andrew & Williamson the first grower to participate, berries sold under the label “Limited Edition,” would carry certification to inform consumers that food safety protocols had been followed and that the workers who harvested the crop were treated fairly.

With Andrew & Williamson paying higher wages than almost all its competitors, the participants in the program hope that the promise of better-quality, safer fruit and better conditions for workers will entice distributors, retailers and consumers to pay a little more, too.

Costco has agreed to play a major part and pay a little extra for the berries once they are certified.

“Who is it that’s delivering the result — safer, higher-quality berries? Those workers,” said Jeff Lyons, the company’s senior vice president for fresh foods. “So yes, I’m willing to pay more, so long as the certification really means something.”

Ernie Farley, a partner of Andrew & Williamson, pointed to the important role that farm workers play. “This program means that instead of one auditor
lettuce.harvestcoming around once in a while to check on things, we have 400 auditors on the job all the time.”

In the past, workers had little incentive to report safety problems. They were paid at a piece rate, seeking to fill their boxes as fast as they could, and taking even 10 minutes to report a safety problem would in effect reduce their pay. One manager said that if workers spotted animal feces in an area where ripe strawberries were ready to be plucked, they might have still simply picked those berries.

Pedro Sanchez, a farmworker, said he liked that the program encouraged pickers to tell supervisors about any safety issues in the fields. And now they know their above-average pay is also tied to the success of this food safety initiative.

Before the initiative, “we didn’t have any system for dealing with things like when we found deer droppings in the field,” said Jorge Piseno, one of the farm workers’ representatives who is part of the project’s worker-management leadership. “Now I know if we find a dead animal or animal waste, we should put up a six-foot perimeter to quarantine the area.”

Alex Malone, director quality assurance for Yum Brand’s Taco Bell Corp., Irvine, Calif., has, according to Jody Shee of The Packer, taken Taco Bell beyond industry standards in order to mitigate risk, which he said begins with frequent, repetitive training that includes senior management, supervisors, crew leads, irrigation workers and harvest crew.

In the past few years, Taco Bell has increased standard field testing from the required 60 samples per 10 acres to 60 samples per acre, and in a more thorough zigzag pattern than the standard “Z” pattern, which assures
lettucegreater field coverage and that the high-risk four borders are sampled at all times, he said.

Rather than just sample one lettuce leaf, per normal procedures, Taco Bell now requires sampling of the inner, outer and wrapper lettuce leaves.

In the processing plant, the company has upgraded chlorination requirements to include continuous measurement of chlorine levels and auto-inject from multiple injection points. An auto-stop is required if the chlorine amount falls below a certain level, and full submersion of all produce in the flume is required to assure 100% chlorination.

All this requires working with suppliers.

“This is essential. If we don’t work together, people are going to get sick,” Malone said, noting he encourages company officials to join him in looking at these and other higher standards as an insurance policy.

26 sickened; woman shares survival story after E. coli outbreak linked to Calif. lettuce

Belle Bourque of Westville, Nova Scotia, spent almost a month in hospital with E. coli O157:H7 after eating lettuce at a restaurant over the holidays.

“You know, one minute you’re healthy, you’re living a normal life and then ‘boom,’ you’re dying.”

Belle Bourque.e.coli.lettuce.13She spent nearly a month in hospital as E. coli bacteria attacked her kidneys.

“I’m sure if it wasn’t for the good doctors and the good Lord and all the prayers, I wouldn’t be here.”

Bourque’s case was one of more than a dozen confirmed in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick, along with 13 in Ontario.

In early Jan. 2013, the Public Health Agency of Canada said the most probable cause of 26 confirmed E. coli O157:H7 illnesses in the Maritimes and Ontario was shredded lettuce grown in California and distributed by FreshPoint Inc. primarily to some KFC and KFC-Taco Bell restaurants.

The silence from the California Greens Marketing Agreement has been lettucedeafening.

A table of leafy green outbreaks is available at http://bites.ksu.edu/leafy-greens-related-outbreaks.

No one in the Bourque family has eaten lettuce since Belle fell ill, and they don’t plan to unless it comes out of their own garden.

Bobby Brown urinates on Taco Bell food and brags about it

I never understood the whole golden shower thing. I don’t want to drink urine, don’t want someone to pee on me, don’t want it in my food.

But, who can explain people.

According to the The Daily Dot, Cameron Jankowski allegedly posted a photo of himself taking a leak on a Taco Bell order.

Hacktivist collective Anonymous tweeted a link to a YouTube video that reportedly lists Janowski’s personal details. He was identified as an employee at a Taco Bell restaurant in Fort Wayne, Ind. The video also includes screenshots of tweets that Jankowski posted and retweeted.

Though his account appears to have been deleted, Topsy archived Jankowski’s tweeted photo, which appears to have been posted early Thursday. He directed the tweet to Hunter Moore, the man behind shuttered revenge porn site Is Anyone Up?

Jankowski claimed that the order he urinated on was one that was already messed up. It was thrown away and not served to customers. But some Twitter users suggested his action was a felony.

Janowski apparently claimed he didn’t care that other users were directing his tweet to Taco Bell, claiming he had a new job lined up anyway.

In response, Taco Bell provided the following statement to the Daily Dot:

“Nothing is more important than the safety of our customers and team members. We have strict food handling procedures and zero tolerance for any violations. As soon as we learned of the situation, we immediately investigated and found the photo was an ill-conceived prank and the food was never served to customers. We find this prank absolutely unacceptable, and we plan to terminate anyone involved and work with authorities to pursue legal action.”

Runs from the border is more accurate; Taco-Mystery-Restaurant-A Bell has new ad slogan

"Live Mas on the Toilet” should be Taco Bell’s new catchphrase, to replace “Runs From the Border.”

Mas is apparently Spanish for more, and the new investment in advertising with the Live Mas slogan to replace Think Outside the Bun, accurately expresses the chain’s commitment to food safety.

A Taco Bell spokesman told Ad Age that the new slogan demonstrates the chain’s "commitment to value, quality, relevance and an exceptional experience," and that it heralds the firm’s move from a "food as fuel" approach to "food as experience" and lifestyle model.

Other slogans considered but rejected:

• cheap calories with produce that may make you barf;

• Taco Bell – 4 out of 5 epidemiologists train with us;

• you may barf, but students still love us; and

• don’t eat poop, eat somewhere else.