DH remedies health code violations

by Stephanie Bradbury / Beacon Staff • September 13, 2012

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The dining hall received four critical violations
The dining hall received four critical violations

According to a report by the City of Boston Inspectional Services Department on Aug. 28, the Little Building dining hall received six violations, marking the fourth failed inspection the dining hall has received in the past year.

The college received four critical foodborne illness violations, one critical violation and one non-critical violation.

According to Andrew Tiedemann, vice president of public affairs, when the dining hall reopened in August, the college had training issues with new staff. The college was given 10 days to train staff and fix any issues before the inspectors came back.

“We get cited on issues that I call ‘training issues’,” said Andrew Mahoney, director of business services. “Training starts up again in September.”

On Sept. 5 the inspectors gave the dining hall a green light to continue. Had the dining hall failed again, it would have been closed down.

The critical foodborne illness violations related to the temperature of food. According to the report, cold rice was stored at 80 degrees F when it should have been at 41 degrees F or below. Chicken nuggets were stored at 120 degrees F when they should have been at 140 degrees F. Chicken patties were stored at 125 degrees F when they should have been at 140 degrees F. Sauteed onions were sitting on the counter at 101 degrees F and should have been kept in hot storage at 140 degrees F.

The critical violation was because of fruit flies throughout the dining hall. This was caused by a new composter that the dining hall is now using for leftovers, according to Tiedemann. The non-critical violation came from utensils left sitting in stagnant water, according to the report.

Critical foodborne illness violations—the highest form of violation—are improper practices or procedures that have been identified by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention as the most prevalent factor contributing to foodborne illness, according to the city of Boston’s Inspectional Services Department website.

Aramark, the company in charge of dining services on campus, declined to comment on the violations and referred all questions to Tiedemann.

“The inspectors are very good at what they do and very detail-oriented. They always seem to find a couple things. It’s a way for them to keep us on our toes,” said Tiedemann. 

Since Nov. 30, 2010, the dining hall has passed only six out of 12 inspections. During this time, there have been six critical foodborne illness violations, seven critical violations, and 18 non-critical violations.

“It’s disheartening and disappointing, especially in my last year,” said Tau Zaman, president of the Student Government Association. “I’ve still seen mice in the dining hall. I’m really over that, I can’t be seeing that anymore.”

Sophomore visual and media arts major Jill Karole said she has also seen rodents in the dining hall.  

“I avoid the dining hall because I know it’s gross. I’ve seen multiple mice in there,” she said. “It’s unfortunate that it’s that way, but it’s the DH, and it’s always been gross.”
Mahoney, however, said he doesn’t think the dining hall is that bad.