Update on Possible Foodborne Illnesses; Investigation into Possible Source Continues

Modified: October 7, 2016 4:21pm

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 From the Office of the Commissioner of Health, Dr. Gale R. Burstein

Date October 7, 2016                              

CONTACT: Mary C. St. Mary/Mary.StMary@Erie.Gov

Phone: 716.858.4941/ Mobile: 716.253.3925

 Update on Possible Foodborne Illnesses

Investigation into Possible Source Continues


ERIE COUNTY, NY— As reported yesterday, the Erie County Department of Health (“ECDOH”) is currently investigating reports of illness possibly associated with Mighty Taco restaurants.  The investigation is being conducted jointly with the New York State Department of Health (“NYSDOH”), Niagara County Department of Health, and the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets.

At this time, the ECDOH has received reports from 104 individuals reporting symptoms consisting primarily of nausea and vomiting after consuming refried beans from one of 11 Mighty Taco locations in Erie County between the dates of September 27th and noon on October 6th, 2016. As this is an ongoing investigation, those numbers may change as additional reports are received.

“The investigation and analysis into an incident of a possible foodborne illness can be very complicated and may take weeks,” stated Dr. Gale Burstein, Erie County Commissioner of Health.  “We need to interview each individual extensively to identify a possible source. I can assure Erie County residents that the full resources of the ECDOH are working on this.”

Representative samples are en route to the New York State Department of Health’s Wadsworth Center in Albany for testing. The exact time when results will be available is unknown, but are not expected before the end of next week at the earliest.

“We are appreciative that the investigation is in the competent and professional hands of the experts at the ECDOH,” said Russell Jasulevich, Chief Operating Officer of Mighty Taco. “Mighty Taco will continue to cooperate fully in this matter as the wellbeing of our loyal customers is our first concern.”

Erie County residents who wish to report an illness that may be associated with this investigation may do so by calling the ECDOH Office of Epidemiology and Disease Control at 716.858.7697.


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For More Information:

Erie County Department of Health

New York State Department of Health Wadsworth Center

New York State Department of Health

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