> Golden Ponds Restaurant Reportedly Causes 260 Cases of Illness - The Food Safety Company Golden Ponds Restaurant Reportedly Causes 260 Cases of Illness - The Food Safety Company
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    Friday, 16 December 2016

    Golden Ponds Restaurant Reportedly Causes 260 Cases of Illness

    Img source: WHEC.com
    A restaurant in Rochester, New York, has reportedly been held responsible for a significant outbreak of illness which affected over 260 people last month. The diners apparently developed severe diarrhoea after eating Thanksgiving dinners at the Golden Ponds restaurant, located in Rochester’s Greece suburb. The Democrat & Chronicle describes the events as ‘quite likely the largest recent outbreak of foodborne illness in Monroe County.’

    The restaurant was closed by Health Department officials on 25 November, pending further investigation. To narrow-down the cause of the illnesses, various victims’ stool samples have been sent to laboratories of the State Department of Health. However, three weeks on, investigators are still awaiting results. Until they come through, a specific source can’t be properly identified.

    Uncertainty lingers mainly because outbreaks of food poisoning can spring from a myriad of different sources, from turkey to peanut butter. Dangerous pathogens like salmonella and listeria can enter the food supply through general uncleanliness, which can make it easier for these bacteria to spread, such as through contaminated water. They have historically been found in ice cream, milk powder, salad leaves and chili peppers, to name but a few.

    The main hazard is cross-contamination; which can generally be avoided through the deployment of adequate safety and cleanliness measures, such as the colour-coding of equipment. Nonetheless, the undercooking of meats can also cause illness from such sources; with poultry being particularly hazardous in these terms.

    As Health Department spokesman John Ricci told the Democrat & Chronicle, ‘we don’t really have the smoking gun yet.’ Nevertheless, because ‘the vast, vast majority [of victims], without prompting, reported nearly identical symptoms’ at the same time, it’s safe to say that ‘something went wrong in one or more of the processes.’

    At Thanksgiving, the Golden Ponds restaurant served between 800 and 1,100 people, with over 260 reporting illness; meaning up to one-third of diners could have been affected.

    According to Food Safety News, ‘The Golden Ponds had 18 non-critical violations during a Nov. 1 inspection.’ With investigations ongoing, however, and media outlets growing increasingly interested in the story, the outcome will most likely be damaging to the business, which generally sees good reviews on Trip Advisor. 

    James Stannard

    James has a Bachelor’s degree in History and wrote his dissertation on beef and protest. His heroes list ranges from Adele to Noam Chomsky: inspirations he’ll be invoking next year when he begins a Master’s degree in London.
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