- Chipotle’s quality controls were not in compliance with applicable consumer and workplace safety regulations;
- Chipotle’s quality controls were inadequate to safeguard consumer and employee health; and
- as a result of the foregoing, Chipotle’s public statements were materially false and misleading at all relevant times.
Chipotle also faces numerous civil claims by outbreak victims ad their families, including a case filed by several high school students and one parent who were sickened in the Simi Valley norovirus outbreak. That case seeks class action and could include more than 1,000 members. More than 100 other civil cases have been filed by individual victims, including about 100 victim who are represented by Marler Clark LLP in Seattle. Partner Bill Marler is publisher of Food Safety News. The documented foodborne illness outbreaks linked to Chipotle in 2015 were:
- Seattle — E. coli O157:H7, July 2015, five sick people, source unknown;
- Simi Valley, Calif. — Norovirus, August 2015, 234 people, source was sick employee;
- Minnesota — Salmonella Newport, August and September 2015, 64 sick people, source was tomatoes but it is not known at what point in the field-to-fork chain the pathogen was introduced;
- Nine states — E. coli O26, began October 2015 and declared over Feb. 1, 55 sick people, source unknown, states involved are California, Delaware, Illinois, Kentucky, Maryland, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Washington;
- Boston — Norovirus, December 2015, 151 sick people, source was sick employee; and
- Three states — E. coli O26, began December 2015 declared over Feb. 1, five sick people, source unknown, states involved are Kansas, Oklahoma and Nebraska.
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