SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Jim’s Burgers is responding after a mouse had been found in a customer’s burrito.
Officials at Siouxland District Health Department (SDHD) said they received a complaint from the customer Wednesday afternoon and then inspected the restaurant. The SDHD said the restaurant agreed to voluntarily close for deep cleaning, including discarding any potentially contaminated food and pest control efforts.
Inspectors then returned to the restaurant Thursday afternoon to ensure that all public health recommendations associated with the complaint were implemented before re-opening for business.
In a statement, the owner of Jim’s Burgers described the process of making a burrito as well preventative measures to ensure a similar incident never happens again. They also said that they cooperated with the inspectors and followed their recommendations.
The owner goes to say that the incident has been a troubling time, seeing racist comments, prejudgments, and wild rumors. They also said they have seen loyal customers and local businesses defend them, for which they are grateful for the support.
Below is the full statement from Jim’s Burgers:
As many of you are aware there was a mouse found inside a carne asada burrito at theJim’s Burgers located on Gordon Drive. Like many of you, we were shocked and bewildered on how an entire mouse of that size could have gotten into the burrito. We did inspect the mouse and made the following observations: the mouse was not burned/cooked, and there were no trauma marks (say from knives). This further confused the staff. We then questioned the worker that made the burrito. This is an exemplary employee that has worked for us since the inception of the very first Jim’s Burgers, 18 years ago. We have never had any issues with this employee.
Our next focus was on what happened from the time the burrito was finished until it was served to the customer. We questioned the next employee that handled the plate with the burrito. We did not find anything even remotely close to suggesting as to how the mouse could have gotten inside.
The following is our procedure when making a carne asada burrito:
(1) The meat is sliced and cubed raw and cooked to order, during lunch time meat is
cooked and then placed on a steam table.
(2) A flour tortilla is warmed and placed on the prep area.
(3) Meat is then grabbed with tongs and placed inside the burrito.
(4) Pico de gallo is then added with a spoon to the burrito.
(5) Salsa is added per customer request.
(6) Burrito is then folded/rolled.
(7) Burrito is packaged in a paper wrapper.
With a mouse that size it is incredibly unlikely that the cook would not notice it. As mentioned before, the cook has worked for us for 18 years.
Regardless, the following measures are going to be implemented so this does not happen in the future.
(1) We are placing an additional camera pointing directly at the food prep area with a clear view.
(2) Additional cameras are going to be placed in our dining area for further precaution. Like stated before, we are still confused on how this could of happened.
When the customer brought this to our attention we gave a full refund immediately and apologized. Our past health inspections did not have any major violations. We closed voluntarily and fully cooperated with the inspectors and followed their recommendations. The following morning we met once again with the inspectors for a follow-up inspection. We were immediately allowed to open.
To conclude, we are going through a turbulent time. We are a small family ran business and this takes a toll. We have seen everything from racist comments, prejudgments, and wild rumors. However, we have also seen loyal customers defend us and local businesses show support. For this we could not be more grateful. This makes us optimistic for the future. We will continue to serve our clientele the best way possible. Thank you to all of our customers and local businesses that have shown us support.