Updated December 29, 2021 – After filing the first lawsuit (case number 19HA-CV-21-3356) arising from a Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak at Great Moon Buffet in west Saint Paul last summer, the Pritzker Hageman Salmonella lawyers are calling for Great Moon Buffet to take responsibility for causing repeated Salmonella infections, year after year.
The Salmonella lawyers at Pritzker Hageman law firm have been retained in a Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak that sickened 17 people who ate at the Great Moon Buffet in June and July 2021. We are representing an 11-year-old girl who contracted a Salmonella infection after eating watermelon prepared and served by Great Moon Buffet at a birthday party last July. Our client experienced symptoms from the Salmonella infection so severe she was hospitalized for several days. Nearly six months later, our client still experiences ongoing symptoms.
3 Salmonella Outbreaks at Great Moon Buffet Indicate Need for Improved Food Safety Practices
After receiving several reports of illnesses, the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) returned to Great Moon Buffet in July 2021 to investigate the third Salmonella Enteritidis outbreak to occur at the restaurant since 2018. A menu-specific questionnaire found that a high percentage of people sickened reported eating watermelon, among other foods. Environmental testing found that a sample taken from an open drain near the restaurant’s dishwasher tested positive or a strain of Salmonella Enteritidis that was “highly related” to the outbreak strain.
During their investigation, MDH concluded that the Salmonella outbreak was caused by several food safety violations, including the following.
- Access to both handwashing sinks in the kitchen was blocked
- The paper towel dispenser for the protein prep handwashing sink was missing disposable paper towels
- Wiping cloths were stored in water with 0 parts per million chlorine concentration
- A spray hose was found above the mop sink that likely contributed to the cross-contamination of raw meat and watermelon. An outbreak investigation in 2018 found that the very same spray house that restaurant staff was instructed to remove caused the contamination of produce items, including watermelon.
Salmonella lawyer Alicia Penner says, “The Great Moon Buffet has repeatedly disregarded food safety measures that are in place to ensure the food they serve is clean and safe to consume. Simple steps could have been taken to stop cross-contamination of the watermelon and prevent customers from contracting dangerous pathogens like Salmonella year after year.”
When Will Great Moon Buffet Be Accountable for Selling Unsafe Food?
In response to the complaint filed by Pritzker Hageman, Great Moon Buffet denied the objective observations made by MDH investigators, including the lack of staff handwashing, the spray hose issue, and they even denied the existence of the two previous MDH documented Salmonella outbreaks in 2018 and 2019.
“Great Moon Buffet is sticking their head in the sand by claiming they don’t know anything about the illnesses caused by their restaurant. They even go so far as to blame an 11-year-old victim for the Salmonella infection they caused!”
–Salmonella lawyer Ray Trueblood
Contact an Experienced Salmonella Lawyer Right Away
The Pritzker Hageman food poisoning lawyers have represented clients sickened in every major outbreak in the U.S. There are still victims of Great Moon Buffet’s negligence out there who do not have legal representation yet. If you or a loved one contracted a Salmonella infection after eating at the Great Moon Buffet, you should talk to an experienced Salmonella lawyer right away because laws called “statutes of limitations,” which vary by state, may limit the amount of time you have to file a claim. An experienced Salmonella lawyer will help you and your family get the justice and compensation you deserve.