More than 100 people have reported becoming ill in recent days after eating at Mighty Taco locations. The Erie County Health Department offered an update Friday on the series of illnesses linked to the popular fast food chain.
Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein says between September 27 and noon October 6, 104 people reported feeling ill after consuming food from a Mighty Taco location. The symptoms include nausea and vomiting. No individuals who reported falling ill have required hospitalization.
The suspected source is refried beans. Samples have been forwarded to the New York State Department of Health's Wadsworth Laboratory in Albany for testing. County health officials warn that it will be several more days until they know the results.
"This is a very intricate investigation," Dr. Burstein said. "We're not only looking at the microbiology of the possible refried beans, we're also looking at other foods that may possibly be involved."
Mighty Taco, Dr. Burstein said, has been fully cooperative with the investigation.
The company's chief operating officer, Russell Jasulevich, issued the following statement through the Erie County Health Department: "We are appreciative that the investigation is in the competent and professional hands of the experts at the ECDOH. Mighty Taco will continue to cooperate fully in this matter as the wellbeing of our loyal customers is our first concern."
The health commissioner says there may be more people out there who have fallen ill, and investigators would like to hear from those people. Anyone else who has been sickened and believes it is after eating Mighty Taco food should call the the Health Department's Office of Epidemiology and Disease Control at 716-858-7697.