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Old 12-22-2015, 04:03 PM   #41
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Christmas could not exist without freezer chilled vodka and pickled herring!
I don't know about Christmas but my father's family (from northern Germany) were all religious about making sure everyone had a piece of pickled herring on New Year's Day.

I maintain the tradition and have only missed it once in all my life (the year I was in Vietnam).

As to salad greens, I think the simplest solution would be to use the technique recommended by the US State Dept. We were always advised to rinse raw vegetables before eating them. The usual method is (as best I can remember) about a tablespoon of household bleach (Clorox or the equivalent) in a gallon of water. That doesn't give any chlorine taste to the greens, but should be good enough to kill most nasties on the veggies.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:18 PM   #42
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We eat black eyed peas - Hoppin John if you will on NYD. No ecoli yet.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:27 PM   #43
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I've been going to Chipotle about twice a month for the last 7 years. I shall be going today.

I am looking forward to reduced lines.

If ya'll think you're OK getting your stuff <wherever:home, restaurant #2>, I've got news for you: you are not. Not when the people picking the stuff are making slave wages and dragging waste through the fields on their feet.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:38 PM   #44
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A Chipotles restaurant just opened a few weeks ago near here.
Now there's a franchisee with exquisite timing! He probably started the process about a year ago....poor bum.
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Old 12-22-2015, 04:41 PM   #45
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A Chipotles restaurant just opened a few weeks ago near here. Although it may be the quality death spiral, I do not foresee the time coming when we eat there. From my perspective the company has a system-wide problem and a few years after it's fixed I may consider eating there. But probably not. For me, their reputation is shot and they might just as well close up shop and go home.

The newspaper periodically publishes the results of health dept. restaurant inspections. It isn't hard to spot the ones that consistently have problems and we avoid those too.
While you suspect a system wide problem at Chipotles, evidence (and OP, a retired food safety professional) point to local sourcing as more likely the issue. That means, if you suspect any restaurant in town might be sourcing from a local farmer, you'll be subjecting yourself to the same risk as dining at Chipotles. If a local organic farmer has an e-coli problem with his lettuce, you're taking a chance whether you're eating it at Chipotles or at Bertha's Diner.

It's really a scary thing. I'd feel much more comfortable if the problem was tracked down to a central source. And I wish there would be more info published about the folks who are sick and did not eat at Chipotles.
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Old 12-22-2015, 05:20 PM   #46
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Is there also an issue with our immune systems becoming less resistant to some of these 'bugs'. It is possible that we are seeing bigger badder bugs, but it is also possible that we have protected our children from so much of the 'ick', that this generation is not as robust as the past?

When I would travel, I would see the fresh vegetable carried on the backs of oxen to the river. They were washed in the river, downstream from where they washed the water buffalo. Downstream from where the raw sewage went in. Downstream from the cremation grounds. Most foreigners would get sick (almost guaranteed) if they ate the fresh foods. Yet the locals did mostly just fine. And when the folks from that country came to the US, our food would make them sick. A different set of bacteria or germs than what they were used to?

I suspect that what we see is a combination of many factors. In a few cases, we have some super germ. In others, we have poor handling practices. We have increased visibility and communication. And we have folks with agendas putting forth theories about what is going on.

I think that the local food kick can do many things. I think the freshness and taste can be impacted. Many vegetables that are commercially grown are varieties that are selected for the ability to be shipped, for how long they stay fresh, or for yield.
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Old 12-22-2015, 05:29 PM   #47
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When I would travel, I would see the fresh vegetable carried on the backs of oxen to the river. They were washed in the river, downstream from where they washed the water buffalo. Downstream from where the raw sewage went in. Downstream from the cremation grounds. Most foreigners would get sick (almost guaranteed) if they ate the fresh foods. Yet the locals did mostly just fine. And when the folks from that country came to the US, our food would make them sick. A different set of bacteria or germs than what they were used to?
What you can't see is that these people have a large parasite burden, with anemia and other results that makes them less able to work, and that causes daily pain in many cases. Many children in these situations never make their first birthdays. If the food and water supply gets cleaned up they often are 6" taller within a generation.

Ha
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Old 12-22-2015, 05:40 PM   #48
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I spent several months in Jakarta, Indonesia where 6 million people have no sanitary treatment system and use canals built by the early Dutch for all kinds of things. Those people (the ones that don't die within 6 months after birth) can handle unsanitary conditions and food laced with bacteria.

Me, not so much!

Chipotle has a problem and it is in trouble, but in the big scheme of things, it's not a deal killer.
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Old 12-22-2015, 06:31 PM   #49
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Bloomberg Business website has an extensive article today re Chipotle's problems, elaborating on many of the areas I have mentioned above.
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Old 12-22-2015, 06:43 PM   #50
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Attempting to be all natural, organic, non GMO, no antibiotics leaves a lot of territory to audit and verify in the area of food safety. A large national chain would need to expend a lot of money and expertise to monitor all these suppliers.
I don't gave any basis to debate, but does anyone else notice how counterintuitive this seems. KFC and McD may be safer (nutrition, processing, etc. aside) than your local farmers market and farm-to-table restaurant. Doesn't pay to be a hipster...
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Old 12-22-2015, 07:20 PM   #51
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When on a HACCP course in the mid 1990's the presenter mentioned that a lowly hotdog or frankfurter is the safest food to eat because of the time/temperature involved in the process. "In other words" as he continued with a smile, "because they cook the crap out of it."
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Old 12-22-2015, 07:26 PM   #52
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Wow, I was sort of joking about no lines, but there was almost nobody in the restaraunt tonight. 6 weeks ago, the lines were getting crazy. We reduced our Chipotle runs. Now? Nobody there. No line. No wait.

They are definitely going to feel the pain financially.

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Hope ya'll are boiling your lettuce, or washing it in clorox.
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Old 12-22-2015, 07:39 PM   #53
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Bloomberg Business website has an extensive article today re Chipotle's problems, elaborating on many of the areas I have mentioned above.
This article is here: Inside Chipotle's Contamination Crisis.

It has the following excerpts:
... on Dec. 21, the CDC announced it was investigating an outbreak of what seems to be a different and rare version of E. coli 026 that’s sickened five people in two states who ate at Chipotle in mid-November. The company says it had expected to see additional cases. It still doesn’t know which ingredients made people ill.

... Because restaurants from Oregon to New York served contaminated food, the problem most likely originated with one of Chipotle’s big suppliers, not one of the local farms.

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Old 12-22-2015, 08:12 PM   #54
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When our son was in college there was a norovirus outbreak linked to a Chipotle. They shut down the restaurant and looked for contaminated food. All the food tested fine. Where they found the contamination was on surfaces, including the outside door handle of the entrance.

So it wasn't anything Chipotle did wrong. Someone else brought it in.

Our other son eats Chipotle often. He says the lines are a lot shorter now.
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Old 12-22-2015, 08:16 PM   #55
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When our son was in college there was a norovirus outbreak linked to a Chipotle. They shut down the restaurant and looked for contaminated food. All the food tested fine. Where they found the contamination was on surfaces, including the outside door handle of the entrance.

So it wasn't anything Chipotle did wrong. Someone else brought it in.

Our other son eats Chipotle often. He says the lines are a lot shorter now.
I had Noro one time. Me and another family member got it within 1 hour of each other. Our common thread was we were the only two who went to a hot dog restaurant 35 hours previous.

This place was right next to a hospital. I'm convinced we got it from some surface that a hospital worker contaminated. I avoid all restaurants near that hospital now.
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Old 12-22-2015, 08:36 PM   #56
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Norovirus is more insidious because you're contagious for two or three days "after" you have recovered and are feeling good.
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Old 12-22-2015, 08:38 PM   #57
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I'm glad I have a cobalt reactor in my kitchen...run all the fresh veggies through that baby and no bugs survive.
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Old 12-22-2015, 08:45 PM   #58
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I never liked the food there, not sure whats the big deal.


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Old 12-22-2015, 08:57 PM   #59
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When our son was in college there was a norovirus outbreak linked to a Chipotle. They shut down the restaurant and looked for contaminated food. All the food tested fine. Where they found the contamination was on surfaces, including the outside door handle of the entrance.

So it wasn't anything Chipotle did wrong. Someone else brought it in.

Our other son eats Chipotle often. He says the lines are a lot shorter now.
In that case, if everyone had used hand sanitizer before touching or eating food, and if the door handles had been sanitized frequently, it would have nipped the problem in the bud. Which reminds me of one of my pet peeves: not cleaning surfaces that have no visible dirt on them, but which are notorious for being contaminated, such as door handles, lavatory handles, and electronics.
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Old 12-22-2015, 09:24 PM   #60
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This is amazing. We live in the greater Houston area that has about 500+ Roach Coaches running around all day long serving everything from fruit, veggies, Tacos, burritos, to grilled meats. These units are not regularly inspected (only spot checks) and are serving construction workers, street people, small businesses, etc.

We never hear about any health problems from these roving restaurants. You would think that they would be the source of a lot of bacteria contamination and subsequent illness, unless it happens and is not reported.
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