This was the culprit of Chipotle’s latest foodborne outbreak

By Food and BeverageFOXBusiness

Will latest illness reports hurt Chipotle's sales?

FBN's Susan Li, Ashley Webster and Liz MacDonald on reports of people getting sick from eating at an Ohio Chipotle.

Chipotle revealed Thursday that it discovered the source of its latest foodborne outbreak that sickened more than 600 people at one of its chains in Powell, Ohio.

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Health officials confirmed that a bacteria called Clostridium perfringens was the culprit, after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) took stool samples from the affected customers.

The CDC notes that the toxin usually develops when someone eats food that has been stored at the wrong temperature after cooking.

The outbreak, which occurred between July 26 and July 30 at the Sawmill Parkway restaurant in Powell reportedly affected 647 people who said they experienced gastrointestinal symptoms, including vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pains after eating Chipotle’s food products.

In a statement to FOX Business, Chipotle’s new CEO Brian Niccol, who formerly lead Taco Bell, said the company “has a zero-tolerance policy for any violations of our stringent food safety standards and we are committed to doing all we can to ensure it does not happen again.”

Niccol said once they identified the incident last month, team members acted quickly to close the location and immediately implement its food safety response protocols, which includes a “total replacement of all food inventory and complete cleaning and sanitization of the restaurant.”

However, according to a Business Insider report, records show that local health officials in Ohio found several violations related to food not being held at proper temperatures. Specifically, with lettuce and beans not being properly cooled and warmed, respectively.

What’s more, two nearby restaurants, according to inspectors, found boxes of raw chicken “leaning on other packaged foods.”

Niccol says while this incident only impacted one restaurant, it’s Chipotle Field Leadership “will be retraining all restaurant employees nationwide beginning next week on food safety and wellness protocols.”

Niccol, who took the helm following Chipotle founder Steve Ells departure last November after the company faced multiple food illness outbreaks dating back to 2013, has been tasked with turning the burrito chain around.

Chipotle shares are down 4 percent Thursday on the news.