Chipotle closes Oregon, SW Wash. outposts in response to E. coli breakout

Restaurant responding to its most recent outbreak.

Share this article!


Chipotle is responding to its most recent E. coli outbreak.

It closed all 43 of its outposts in Washington and Oregon until this one is under control.

“This (outbreak) will likely be some type of perishable product, whether it’s lettuce or cilantro,” said Bill Marler, a prominent food safety litigator in Seattle . “It would be unusual to have six stores undercooking beef at the same time.”

Thorough cooking kills E. coli but it’s difficult to wash the bacteria off of fresh produce. The salmonella outbreak in September in Minnesota was traced to tomatoes, prompting Chipotle to switch suppliers.

Health officials in Oregon and Washington have been working on the investigation all weekend. Three patients have been identified in Oregon, residents of Washington and Clackamas counties. The 19 cases in Washington state are spread among Clark, Cowlitz, King and Skagit counties. One person in Oregon and seven in Washington have been hospitalized.


A total of 22 people in the Portland area have reported feeling sick from the food.

The cases reported so far occurred in two Oregon counties and four in Washington, the state health agency said. There were no reports of problems outside the Northwest.

KGW, a PBJ news partner, reported that one of the cases stemmed from a Clackamas Town Center Chipotle meal.

(SOURCE: Portland Business Journal)

Officials say anyone who ate at the restaurant from Oct. 14 to 23 could’ve been exposed to the bacteria.

Shares for the company dropped 5% as a result of the latest outbreak.

It appears a high number of employees will need to go to a Plan B for lunch today.

RELATED NEWS: Chipotle eschews GMO ingredientsFast Food Slows Down

Correction appended:  A poll question has been changed to reflect the following correction, Chipotle has been the source of three food-borne illnesses, not E. coli, since August.

Published in Categories News