CARLSBAD, N.M. (KRQE) – Several students at a New Mexico high school were fed raw chicken at lunch. The school has apologized, calling it an honest mistake.
“She was gagging. I think she wanted to throw up. It was bad,” said Madison Meyers, a senior at Carlsbad High School.
Meyers was sitting with her friends at lunch when she says they quickly realized the chicken they were served wasn’t cooked.
“They bit into the chicken and they’re like, ‘Ugh, this is nasty,’ and we looked at it and it was completely raw. It was gross,” said Meyers.
They weren’t the only ones. KRQE News 13 is told a total of 30 servings were handed out.
“How could this happen?” asked Meyers. “For it to be one strip, ok that’s fine. But for it to be several, that means they just blatantly didn’t pay attention, didn’t care what they were doing, didn’t even check the food.”
KRQE News 13 asked the school district the same question. The district said it was a complete accident and that one of the pans of chicken didn’t get cooked.
“There was one that didn’t fit in the oven, left there on the rack. Then when the chicken was ready, it got taken out and put on that same rack,” said Food Service Director Lyman Graham.
They say they pulled the chicken immediately and gave all students who came forward another meal, even the ones with cooked chicken.
The health inspector stopped by after as a result, but the district said no violations were found.
“We sure don’t ever want to make anyone sick and it was an innocent, innocent mistake. We’re very sorry about it,” said Graham.
KRQE News 13 is told they have removed the food item from the menu for now.
“Something needs to be done. Maybe better staffing, better training. Maybe check the food better before it’s prepared or after it’s prepared to make sure nothing like this happens because kids can get really, really sick,” said Meyers.
The school district says it has done just that, changing some responsibilities of the cafeteria staff and providing extra training to make sure make sure it doesn’t happen again.