It happens all over the US, however, this one hits close to home. Milk and Honey, in the Nashville Gulch has been identified by Metro Nashville Health Department as the alleged source of an outbreak of Salmonella in August, 2018. Improperly cooked Gnocchi seems to be the culprit in this case, as one of the ingredients were non-pasturized eggs from Gravel Ridge Farms. Farm fresh eggs are fine, as long as they are cooked to the minimum internal cooking temperature of 145 degrees Fahrenheit. 145 F is indicated by the FDA as the minimum required temperature for eggs used for immediate service because it can kill the bacterium Salmonella.spp. In this case, apparently that did not happen.
According to Metro Nashville Health Department, the employee or employees preparing the dish were not properly trained in food safety practices. Metro also cites “lack of management oversight” as the primary cause of the Salmonella outbreak. The Alabama egg producer is also named in at least one of the lawsuits.
Lawsuits involving foodborne illnesses can be very costly. These cases are pending, so the outcome is uncertain. These allegations have not yet been proven in court, but one lesson can be taken from the entire episode. Proactive training is needed in ALL foodservice establishments. As the old adage goes: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” (Quote from Benjamin Franklin, 1736.)