We learned yesterday from a U.S. Attorneys’ Office Press Release that Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. will pay $25 million to resolve criminal charges related to the company’s involvement in foodborne illness outbreaks that sickened more than 1,100 people between 2015 and 2018.
A criminal information filed in federal court in Los Angeles charges Chipotle with adulterating food in violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. The Newport Beach, California-based company agreed to a three-year deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) that will allow it to avoid conviction if it complies with an improved food safety program. Chipotle also agreed to pay the $25 million criminal fine, the largest ever in a food safety case, as part of the DPA.
“This case highlights why it is important for restaurants and members of the food services industry to ensure that managers and employees consistently follow food safety policies,” said Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt of the Department of Justice’s Civil Division. “The Department of Justice will vigorously enforce food safety laws in order to protect public health.”
“Chipotle failed to ensure that its employees both understood and complied with its food safety protocols, resulting in hundreds of customers across the country getting sick,” said U.S. Attorney Nick Hanna for the Central District of California. “Today’s steep penalty, coupled with the tens of millions of dollars Chipotle already has spent to upgrade its food safety program since 2015, should result in greater protections for Chipotle customers and remind others in the industry to review and improve their own health and safety practices.”
“The FDA will hold food companies accountable when they endanger the public’s health by purveying adulterated food that causes outbreaks of illness,” said Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D. “We will continue to investigate and bring to justice any company whose food products present a health hazard to consumers.”
The charges stem in part from incidents related to outbreaks of norovirus, a highly infective pathogen that easily can be transmitted by food workers handling ready-to-eat foods and their ingredients. Norovirus can cause severe illness, including diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, and stomach pain.
According to the factual statement in the DPA, which the company agreed was true, Chipotle was implicated in at least five foodborne illness outbreaks between 2015 and 2018 connected to restaurants in the Los Angeles area, Boston, Virginia, and Ohio. These incidents primarily stemmed from store-level employees’ failure to follow company food safety protocols at company-owned restaurants, including a Chipotle policy requiring the exclusion of employees who were sick or recently had been sick.
For example, in August 2015, 234 consumers and employees of a Chipotle restaurant in Simi Valley, California reported becoming ill. Although company policies required the restaurant to report certain employee illnesses to Chipotle safety officials and to implement enhanced food safety procedures, the restaurant did not pass along information regarding an ill employee until multiple consumers already had reported being sick.
In December 2015, a norovirus incident at a Chipotle restaurant in Boston sickened 141 people. According to the DPA, that outbreak likely was the result of an ill apprentice manager who was ordered to continue working in violation of company policy after vomiting in the restaurant. Two days later, the same employee helped package a catering order for a Boston College basketball team, whose members were among the consumers sickened by the outbreak.
In July 2018, approximately 647 people who dined at a Chipotle restaurant in Powell, Ohio reported illness related to Clostridium perfringens, a pathogen that grows rapidly when food is not held at appropriate temperatures. The local health department found critical violations of local food regulations, including those specific to time and temperature controls for lettuce and beans.
As set out in the DPA, some store-level Chipotle employees from the 2015 to 2018 time period reported inadequate staffing and food safety training. Employees also reported pressure to work while sick, even though that was against Chipotle’s sick-exclusion policies.
Chipotle agreed in the DPA to develop and follow an improved, comprehensive food safety compliance program. Chipotle agreed to work with its Food Safety Council to evaluate the company’s food safety audits, restaurant staffing, and employee training, among other areas, to mitigate the issues that led to the outbreaks.
So, how can U.S. Attorneys prosecute those who manufacturer contaminated food knowingly or not that sicken their customers or not?
Congress passed the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) in 1938 in reaction to growing public safety demands. The primary goal of the Act was to protect the health and safety of the public by preventing deleterious, adulterated or misbranded articles from entering interstate commerce.
Under section 402(a)(4) of the Act, a food product is deemed “adulterated” if the food was “prepared, packed, or held under insanitary conditions whereby it may have become contaminated with filth, or whereby it may have been rendered injurious to health.” A food product is also considered “adulterated” if it bears or contains any poisonous or deleterious substance, which may render it injurious to health. Chapter III of the Act addresses prohibited acts, subjecting violators to both civil and criminal liability.
Felony violations include adulterating or misbranding a food, drug, or device, and putting an adulterated or misbranded food, drug, or device into interstate commerce. Any person who commits a prohibited act violates the FDCA. A person committing a prohibited act “with the intent to defraud or mislead” is guilty of a felony punishable by years in jail and millions in fines or both. The key here is an intentional act.
A misdemeanor conviction under the FDCA, unlike a felony conviction, does not require proof of fraudulent intent, or even of knowing or willful conduct. Rather, a person may be convicted if he or she held a position of responsibility or authority in a firm such that the person could have prevented the violation. Convictions under the misdemeanor provisions are punishable by not more than one year or fined not more than $250,000, or both.
United States v. Park 421 U.S. 658 (U.S. Sup. Ct. 1975) was decided just a few months after I graduated from High School, and long before I decided (as one food pundit coined), to become the “the Assassin in Armani” – at least to the food industry.
Park is an interesting case where the Court ruled that Mr. Park, the CEO of Acme International (Acme Markets, Inc., was a national retail food chain with approximately 36,000 employees, 874 retail outlets, 12 general warehouses, and four special warehouses), had failed to comply with the FDCA, to keep conditions within his warehouses sanitary. Rats and rat feces were found in two of the company’s warehouses (on more than one occasion) and the FDA had warned Acme to clean it up. There appears to have been no reported illnesses. At trial Acme pleaded guilty, but Park claimed he was not personally responsible for the violations. The jury disagreed and he was ultimately fined $50 per violation. The case eventually made its way to the Supreme Court.
In part, the focus of the Court’s opinion was whether “the manager of a corporation, as well as the corporation itself, may be prosecuted under the FDCA for the introduction of misbranded and adulterated articles into interstate commerce.” The Court concluded the answer to be yes. In fact, the Court found that “[t]he Act imposes upon persons exercising authority and supervisory responsibility reposed in them by a business organization not only a positive duty to seek out and remedy violations but also, and primarily, a duty to implement measures that will insure that violations will not occur, … [I]n order to make food distributors the strictest censors of their merchandise, … the Act punishes “neglect where the law requires care, or inaction where it imposes a duty.”
The Court further looked to the purposes of the Act and noted that they “touch phases of the lives and health of people which, in the circumstances of modern industrialism, are largely beyond self-protection.” It observed that the Act is of “a now familiar type, “which” dispenses with the conventional requirement for criminal conduct – awareness of some wrongdoing. In the interest of the larger good it puts the burden of acting at hazard upon a person otherwise innocent but standing in responsible relation to a public danger.”
We all should agree that this was a just result.
In 2014 former Peanut Corporation of America owner Stewart Parnell, his brother and one-time peanut broker, Michael Parnell, and Mary Wilkerson, former quality control manager at the company’s Blakely, Georgia, plant, faced a federal jury in Albany, Georgia. The 12-member jury found Stewart Parnell guilty on 67 federal felony counts, Michael Parnell was found guilty on 30 counts, and Wilkerson was found guilty of one of the two counts of obstruction of justice charged against her. Two other PCA employees earlier pleaded guilty. The felony charges of introducing adulterated food into interstate commerce, “with the intent to defraud or mislead,” stemmed from a 2008 to 2009 Salmonella outbreak that sickened 714 and left nine dead. All defendants will be sentenced in July of this year. Stewart and Michael are facing decades in jail.
But, what about these?
In 1998 in what was the first criminal conviction in a large-scale food-poisoning outbreak, Odwalla Inc. pleaded guilty to violating Federal food safety laws and agreed to pay a $1.5 million fine for selling tainted apple juice that killed a 16-month-old girl and sickened 70 other people in several states in 1996. Odwalla, based in Half Moon Bay, California pleaded guilty to 16 counts of unknowingly delivering ”adulterated food products for introduction into interstate commerce” in the October 1996 outbreak, in which a batch of its juice infected with the toxic bacteria E. coli O157:H7 sickened people in Colorado, California, Washington and Canada. Fourteen children developed a life-threatening disease (hemolytic uremic syndrome -HUS) that ravages kidneys. At the time, the $1.5 million penalty was the largest criminal penalty in a food poisoning case. Odwalla also was on court-supervised probation for five years, meaning that it had to submit a detailed plan to the food and drug agency demonstrating its food safety precautions and that any subsequent violations could have resulted in more serious charges.
In 2012 Eric Jensen, age 37, and Ryan Jensen, age 33, brothers who owned and operated Jensen Farms, a fourth generation cantaloupe operation, located in Colorado, presented themselves to U.S. marshals in Denver and were taken into custody on federal charges brought by the U.S. Attorney’s Office with the Food and Drug Administration – Office of Criminal Investigation. According to the six-count indictment, Eric and Ryan Jensen unknowingly introduced adulterated (Listeria-tainted) cantaloupe into interstate commerce. The indictment further stated that the cantaloupe was prepared, packed and held under conditions, which rendered it injurious to health. The outbreak sickened over 147, killing over 33 in 28 states in the fall of 2011. The Jensen’s faced up to six years in jail and $1,500,000 in fines each. The eventually pleaded guilty and were sentenced to five years’ probation.
In 2013, Austin “Jack” DeCoster and his son, Peter DeCoster, both faced charges stemming from a Salmonella outbreak caused by their Iowa egg farms in 2010. The Salmonella outbreak ran from May 1 to November 30, 2010, and prompted the recall of more than a half-billion eggs. And, while there were 1,939 confirmed infections, statistical models used to account for Salmonella illnesses in the U.S. suggested that the eggs may have sickened more than 62,000 people. The family business, known as Quality Egg LLC, pleaded guilty in 2015 to a federal felony count of bribing a USDA egg inspector and to two misdemeanors of unknowingly introducing adulterated food into interstate commerce. As part of the plea agreement, Quality Egg paid a $6.8-million fine and the Decoster’s $100,000 each, for a total of $7 million. Both Decoster’s were sentenced to three months in jail.
In 2015 ConAgra Foods agreed to plead guilty and pay $11.2 million in connection with the shipment of Salmonella contaminated peanut butter linked to a 2006 through 2007 nationwide outbreak of that sickened over 700. ConAgra signed a plea agreement admitting that it unknowingly introduced Peter Pan and private label peanut butter contaminated with Salmonella into interstate commerce during the 2006 through 2007 outbreak.
So, here is a recent letter from the FDA to Jimmy John’s:
Although you stated that corrective actions were implemented following the 2019 and 2012 outbreaks, you have not provided FDA with any information demonstrating long-term, sustainable corrections have been implemented throughout your organization to prevent this violation from recurring in the future. For example, providing FDA with documentation of policies and practices demonstrating that you have made a corporate commitment to ensure produce covered by the Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption (Produce Safety Rule), Title 21 Code of Federal Regulations, Part 112 (21 CFR Part 112), specifically sprouts, and sourced by any Jimmy John’s restaurant will be procured from a farm or firm operating in compliance with the Produce Safety Rule, the Act, and, as applicable, the Current Good Manufacturing Practice, Hazard Analysis, and Risk-Based Preventive Controls for Human Foods (PC Rule), 21 CFR Part 117.
Perhaps the U.S. Attorneys’ Office should have been on Jimmy John’s a long time ago?
Jimmy John’s outbreaks in the past dozen years
- Multistate E. coli O103 Outbreak, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Sprouts 2020
Sprouts Unlimited has initiated a recall of clover sprouts because of possible E. coli O103 contamination. The clover sprouts were distributed to Hy Vee Food stores, Fareway Food Stores and used by Jimmy John’s restaurants in Iowa.
“Sprouts Unlimited Inc. became aware of the potential contamination after receiving information from the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, Des Moines, IA, that a cluster of E. coli O103 illnesses epidemiologically linked to clover sprouts from Sprouts Unlimited Inc.,” according to the company’s recall notice. “An investigation and further tests are being conducted to determine the source.”
- Multistate Salmonella Outbreak, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Sprouts 2018
As of January 18, 2018, eight people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Montevideo had been reported from Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Illnesses started on dates ranging from December 20, 2017, to January 3, 2018. Ill people ranged in age from 26 to 50, with a median age of 34. All 8 were female. No hospitalizations and no deaths were reported. Evidence indicated that raw sprouts served at Jimmy John’s restaurants were a likely source of outbreak.
Federal, state, and local health and regulatory officials conducted traceback investigations from the six Jimmy John’s locations where ill people ate raw sprouts.
- Multistate E. coli O121 Outbreak, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Alfalfa Sprouts 2014
19 Sickened – Public health officials in California, Idaho, Michigan, Montana, Utah and Washington collaborated with their federal partners at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate an outbreak of E. coli O121 that occurred in May 2014. A total of 19 people with the outbreak strain, identified by the CDC’s PulseNet PFGE Pattern Identification Numbers EXKX01.0011/EXKA26.0001, were reported. Among people for whom information was available, dates of illness onset ranged from May 1, 2014, to May 20, 2014. Ill people ranged from 11 years to 52 years old. Seven of 16 victims for whom information was available were hospitalized. None of the confirmed patients developed hemolytic uremic syndrome and no deaths were reported.
Epidemiologic and traceback investigations conducted by public health officials implicated raw clover sprouts produced by Evergreen Fresh Sprouts LLC of Hayden, Idaho as the likely source of this outbreak. Thirteen (81%) of 16 ill people reported eating raw clover sprouts in the week before becoming ill. Ill people in Washington and Idaho reported eating sprouts in sandwiches at several local food establishments including several Jimmy John’s locations, the Pita Pit, and Daanen’s Deli.
As part of the investigation the FDA performed a traceback analysis and determined that Evergreen Fresh Sprouts supplied sprouts to seven restaurants with outbreak associated cases. This analysis used documents collected directly from the distributors and the grower, Evergreen Fresh Sprouts, as well as documents collected by the states from the points of service.
The FDA conducted several inspections at the Evergreen Fresh Sprouts facility in May and June. During the inspections FDA investigators observed a number of unsanitary conditions, including condensate and irrigation water dripping from rusty valves, a rusty and corroded watering system in the mung bean room, tennis rackets were being used to scoop mung bean sprouts that had scratches, chips and frayed plastic; a pitchfork used to transfer mung bean sprouts had corroded metal, and a squeegee used to agitate mung bean sprouts inside a soak vat that had visible corroded metal and non-treated wood.
On June 26, 2014, the FDA and CDC held a meeting with the owner of Evergreen Fresh Sprouts to advise the firm of FDA’s concerns that the seed lot used to row clover sprouts linked to this outbreak might be contaminated and to encourage Evergreen Fresh Sprouts to discontinue using that seed lot. The owner of Evergreen Fresh Sprouts agreed to stop using the suspect lot of seeds.
- Multistate E. coli O157 Outbreak, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Cucumbers 2013
On Friday, October 18, 2013, public health investigators at the Colorado Department of Public Health (CDPHE) detected an increase in Denver area patients reported as having E. coli O157. Preliminary interviews revealed that patients had eaten at Jimmy John’s restaurants and shopped at an area grocery store chain. CDPHE epidemiologist, Nicole Comstock, noted in an October 22 email sent to county health departments that “at this time we are not ruling any exposures out yet.” Ms. Comstock encouraged county investigators to interview newly reported patients diagnosed with E. coli O157 promptly using a standardized questionnaire. By October 23, CDPHE epidemiologists described the association between illness and sandwiches prepared at area Jimmy John’s restaurants “too strong to ignore.”
CDPHE and their local and federal public health partners conducted case finding, two case control studies (“Study I” and “Study II”), an environmental investigation, produce traceback, and laboratory testing. Case finding occurred via routine public health surveillance methods. Case control “Study I” was conducted to assess restaurant exposures reported by case-patients. Case control “Study II” was conducted subsequently to assess foods consumed at Jimmy John’s. For “Study II” online and phone order records were used to recruit controls (non-ill Jimmy John’s customers) who purchased food from the same Jimmy John’s locations on the dates as case-patients.
Eight patient’s laboratory confirmed with E. coli O157:H7 were identified as outbreak associated cases. All eight patients were infected with an indistinguishable genetic strain (EXHX01.0074/EXHA26.0569) of E. coli O157 as determined by PFGE and MLVA. This strain was not seen elsewhere in the United States in October 2014. One patient was classified as a “probable” case since she was not culture positive for E. coli O157 due to collection of her stool specimen post-antibiotic treatment. Three blood specimens collected from her would later test positive for IgG and IgM antibodies to E. coli O157:H7, confirming a recent acute infection with E. coli O157. All nine outbreak-associated-cases ate food from one of three Jimmy John’s locations in the metro-Denver area. This finding was highly statistically significant based on analysis of data collected in Case control Study I. Case control Study II data showed that all nine outbreak-associated-cases consumed cucumbers on Jimmy John’s sandwiches, also a highly statistically significant finding. No other food items were statistically associated with illness. Meal dates for case patients were October 5th, 6th, 7th and 9th. Median age of patients was 23 years; 78% were female.
Three (3) Jimmy John’s locations were identified by patients. One was located in Lakewood, Colorado at 180 South Union and was inspected by the Jefferson County Health Department (JCHD). Two (2) fell within the jurisdiction of the Tri-County Health Department (TCHD): 2610 West Belleview Avenue, Littleton, Colorado and 1140 South Colorado Boulevard, Glendale, Colorado. Local health environmental health staff conducted on-site investigations at each restaurant. They examined produce-handling practices and obtained invoices for traceback. Colo-Pac Produce Inc. (“Colo-Pac”) delivered whole cucumbers and other produce to all three stores approximately two times a week. Cucumbers and other produce (lettuce, tomatoes and onions) were washed, chopped, and prepared fresh daily for use at each restaurant. Although no restaurant had leftover food from the implicated meal dates, TCPH and JCHD staff collected food samples for laboratory testing at the CDPHE Public Health Laboratory. All food tests were negative for the presence of E. coli O157 at the state laboratory.
Based on customer purchase order number/bills of lading provided by Colo-Pac, investigators determined that a single lot (Lot 19158) of cucumbers was delivered to all three implicated Jimmy John’s locations during the time frame of interest (September 9, 2013 to October 9, 2013). Further traceback showed that the cucumbers were grown in Torreon, Coahulia, Mexico by grower/packer Ganadera Vigo. They were imported into the United States by GR Produce of McAllen, Texas, which then sold full cases to Colo-Pac. Colo-Pac sold full cases to two of the implicated Jimmy John’s; one store received split cases boxed at Colo-Pac. CDPHE staff conducted an onset inspection at Colo-Pac and obtained 55 swab samples from the warehouse and delivery trucks. All specimens were negative for E. coli O157.
- Multistate E. coli O26 Outbreak, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Alfalfa Sprouts 2012
29 Sickened – A total of 29 individuals infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O26 were reported from 11 states, including: Alabama (1), Arkansas (1), Iowa (5), Kansas (2), Michigan (10), Missouri (3), Ohio (3), Pennsylvania (1), Washington (1), Wisconsin (1), and West Virginia (1).
Of the 27-ill people with available information, 23 (85%) reported consuming sprouts at Jimmy John’s restaurants in the seven days preceding illness. Among 29 ill people, illness onset dates ranged from December 25, 2011, to March 3, 2012. Ill people ranged in age from 9 years to 57 years old, with a median age of 26 years; 89% of the patients were female. Among the 29 ill persons, seven (24%) were hospitalized. None developed HUS, and no deaths were reported.
Preliminary traceback information identified a common lot of clover seeds used to grow clover sprouts served at Jimmy John’s restaurant locations where ill persons ate. FDA and states conducted a traceback that identified two separate sprouting facilities; both used the same lot of seed to grow clover sprouts served at these Jimmy John’s restaurant locations. On February 10, 2012, the seed supplier initiated a notification process for sprouting facilities that received the implicated lot of clover seed to stop using it.
Results of the epidemiologic and traceback investigations indicated eating raw clover sprouts at Jimmy John’s restaurants was the likely cause of this outbreak.
- Sprouters Northwest, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Clover Salmonella Sprouts Outbreak 2010
7 Sickened – Sprouters Northwest of Kent, WA, issued a product recall after the company’s clover sprouts had been implicated in an outbreak of Salmonella Newport in Oregon and Washington. At least some of the cases had consumed clover sprouts while at a Jimmy John’s restaurant. Concurrent with this outbreak, a separate outbreak of Salmonella, serotype I 4,5,12,i- ; involving alfalfa sprouts served at Jimmy John’s restaurants was under investigation. The recall of Northwest Sprouters products included: clover; clover and onion; spicy sprouts; and deli sprouts. The Sprouters Northwest products had been sold to grocery stores and wholesale operations in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, and Alberta. The FDA inspection found serious sanitary violations.
- Multistate Salmonella Outbreak, Tiny Greens Organic Farm, Jimmy John’s Restaurants Alfalfa Sprouts 2010
140 Sickened – On December 17, the Illinois Department of Health announced that an investigation was underway into an outbreak of Salmonella, serotype I4,,12:i:-. Many of the Illinois patients had eaten alfalfa sprouts at various Jimmy John’s restaurants in the Illinois counties of Adams, Champaign, Cook, DuPage, Kankakee, Macon, McHenry, McLean, Peoria, and Will counties. The sprouts were suspected to be the cause of the illnesses. On Dec. 21 that year Jimmy John Liautaud, the owner of the franchised restaurant chain, requested that all franchisees remove all sprouts from the menu as a “precautionary” measure. On Dec. 23, the Centers for Disease Control revealed that outbreak cases had been detected in other states and that the outbreak was linked with eating alfalfa sprouts from a nationwide sandwich chain. On Dec. 26, preliminary results of the investigation indicated a link to eating Tiny Greens’ Alfalfa Sprouts at Jimmy John’s restaurant outlets. The FDA subsequently advised consumers and restaurants to avoid Tiny Greens Brand Alfalfa Sprouts and Spicy Sprouts produced by Tiny Greens Organic Farm of Urbana, Illinois. The Spicy Sprouts contained alfalfa, radish and clover sprouts. On January 14, 2011, it was revealed that the FDA had isolated Salmonella serotype I4,,12:i:- from a water runoff sample collected from Tiny Greens Organic Farm; the Salmonella isolated was indistinguishable from the outbreak strain. The several FDA inspections of the sprout growing facility revealed factors that likely led to contamination of the sprouts.
- CW Sprouts, Inc., SunSprout Sprouts, “restaurant chain (Chain A),” a.k.a. Jimmy John’s Salmonella Outbreak 2009
256 Sickened – In February, Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services officials identified six isolates of Salmonella Saintpaul. Although this is a common strain of Salmonella, during 2008, only three cases had been detected in Nebraska and only four subtypes of this outbreak strain had been identified in 2008 in the entire USA. As additional reports were made, a case control study was conducted; alfalfa sprout consumption was found to be significantly related to illness. The initial tracebacks of the sprouts indicated that although the sprouts had been distributed by various companies, the sprouts from the first cases originated from the same sprouting facility in Omaha, NE. Forty-two of the illnesses beginning on March 15 were attributed to sprout growing facilities in other states; these facilities had obtained seed from the same seed producer. The implicated seeds had been sold in many states. On April 26, the FDA and CDC recommended that consumers not eat raw alfalfa sprouts, including sprout blends containing alfalfa sprouts. In May, FDA alerted sprout growers and retailers that a seed supplier was withdrawing all alfalfa seeds with a specific three-digit prefix. Many of the illnesses occurred at “restaurant chain (Chain A),” according to the CDC, which generally does not identify specific business.
- Jimmy John’s Restaurant Alfalfa Sprouts and Iceberg Lettuce E. coli Outbreak 2008
28 Sickened – Several University of Colorado students from one sorority became ill with symptoms of bloody diarrhea and cramping. Additional illnesses were reported. E. coli O157:NM (H-) was determined to be the cause. Consumption of alfalfa sprouts at the Jimmy John’s Restaurants in Boulder County and Adams County were risk factors for illness. In addition, the environmental investigation identified Boulder Jimmy John’s food handlers who were infected with E. coliand who had worked while ill. The health department investigation found a number of critical food handling violations, including inadequate handwashing. The fourteen isolates from confirmed cases were a genetic match to one another.
So, why whack Chipotle and not Jimmy John’s?