An E.coli contamination scare linked to Chipotle has spread to six states, the Centres for Disease Control said Friday.
Nearly four dozen people have been infected in Washington, California, Minnesota, Ohio, New York, and Oregon, the CDC said.
Chipotle says it has taken “aggressive steps” to fix the problem.
“The source of the problem appears to have been contained during a period in late October,” the company said in a statement. “In response to this incident, Chipotle has taken aggressive steps to make sure its restaurants are as safe as possible. There have been no reported new cases in Washington or Oregon since Chipotle put its remediation plan into effect.”
Chipotle’s stock fell by as much as 9% Friday afternoon.
The company was forced to shut down 43 restaurants in Seattle and Portland earlier this month after some customers became ill after eating there.
The company has since reopened all of its restaurants, but consumers are still wary of eating there, according to a recent survey by YouGov Brand Index.
Consumer perception of the brand is at its lowest level since 2007, according to the survey.
A metric that measures how many consumers plan to eat there in the near future has also dropped.
Chipotle founder Steve Ells published an open letter to customers last week in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, the Oregonian, USA Today and the New York Times, about the issue.
“The idea that eating at any of our restaurants could cause anyone to become ill is unacceptable to all of us at Chipotle,” Ells wrote. “On behalf of all of us, I’d like to offer our sincerest apologies and assure all of our customers that we are doing everything possible to make our food as safe as it can be.”
Read the full letter:
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