Food concerns only rumors

Rumors of students experiencing food poisoning from the Laker Inn were heard around the Mercyhurst College campus before Easter break.

Despite these rumors, the Parkhurst and Laker Inn employees have not received any reports or complaints of food poisoning, according to Kim Novak, general manager of Mercyhurst College Dining Services.

Parkhurst receives over 400 comment cards a month at Mercyhurst, and none of the comment cards have ever contained a complaint about students feeling ill after eating at the Laker Inn or Egan Dining Hall.

Novak explained how to determine if a student is suffering from a foodborne illness, and what to do about it.

“An outbreak has to be more than one person,” Novak said. “If one person was not feeling well, it could be a number of things.”

Food poisoning typically does not affect the body for 24 hours, and when it does the person experiences severe pain, not indigestion, Novak said.

Novak reminded students the importance of reporting concerns about food illnesses.

“If anyone does come to any of our units and are concerned about any of the food they ate, they should bring it to our attention,” Novak said.

If an illness were to be reported, an investigation would be done immediately.

“A foodborne illness should be tracked in a timely manner,” Novak said. “Time is of the essence.”

The chefs at the dining facilities at Mercyhurst keep accurate records of what is served and at what temperature it is served. This information would be used in determining a food illness outbreak.

The food service employees on campus are willing to talk to anyone who has a concern about the food.

“Quality and service to the students are most important to us,” Director of Retail Sundeep Baggam said. “We always want them to have a pleasurable and memorable experience.”