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Chipotle in Boston Reopen After Norovirus Outbreak

Dec 28, 2015 11:15 AM EST

Chipotle reopen its Boston restaurant in Cleveland Circle on Christmas. After an outbreak of norovirus in its outlet earlier, the Mexican Grill would have to close its restaurant for inspection.

In the beginning of this month, another case of outbreak hit Chipotle Restaurant in Boston. This outbreak has given Chipotle another hard time, after series of outbreak in its restaurants. According to CBS Boston, 153 norovirus cases were linked to the Cleveland Circle Chipotle location, and 141 of Boston College students got sick after eating there.

After weeks of closing the restaurant, Chipotle is scheluded to reopen on Christmas.

ABC News reported that Boston health officials declared the site has been cleared to reopen Thursday after it passed a city inspection. Boston's Inspectional Services Department told ABC News that the restaurant has been disinfected and most of its employees tested negative for the virus. "Effective tomorrow morning, [Chipotle] can go back into business," said William Christopher, the department's commissioner.

In the first week of December, the first case of norovirus in Chipotle's East Coast restaurant emerged after students from Boston College got sick after eating at Chipotle. As many as 80 members of the men's basketball team affected in the first wave of the outbreak. As of December 18, more than 130 students are reported to get sick after dining in at Chipotle in Beacon St., located in Cleveland Circle, Northwest of Boston.

Variety of virus outbreak in Chipotle restaurants starting from Minnesota, California, Washington,Oregon and Boston is a warning sign to the company to change its food preparation practice. Chipotle has a good reputation for its fresh and locally sourced ingredients, but that was the main source of the variety of virus contaminating the restaurant. Norovirus in Minnesota, California and Boston; E. coli in Washington and Oregon and possible salmonella in Minnesota may caused by its local suppliers' inadequate standard of hygiene.

In response to that, according to WCVB Boston News, the restaurant chain will now be prepping many vegetables and cheese in central locations instead of in store. The company willl also include sample-testing the meat; dipping onions in boiling water to kill germs; marinating chicken in plastic bags instead of bowls; and adding cilantro to freshly cooked, still-hot rice to kill any microbes.

As for the outbreak of norovirus in Boston, health officials said a sick employee was the source. It is one of the violation which health official found during the inspection. The company said that employee and the manager on duty at the time have been fired.

It seems food preparation method that makes Chipotle famous is also the achiles heel that makes it prone to contamination.

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