A woman by the name of Karen Goode has submitted a 10-page lawsuit against Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen claiming that screwworms infected her body and are eating her organs after consuming food from the southern fast food chain. She is suing for $1 million from the chain and its franchisee. Her lawyer claims that she is in a terrible state and has continued to lose large amounts of blood and muscle tissue because the screwworms have been trying to escape her body by eating her flesh.
However, a spokesperson from Popeye’s corporate office has stated that the franchisee worked with third-parties to investigate Goode’s claims and they have been unfounded. There is no evidence that any of the food served at the restaurant were infected with screwworms. Additionally, scientists have stepped in to counter Goode’s claims by explaining that screwworms can infect mammals, including humans, but they would not survive a cooking process or the acid found in humans’ stomachs. Instead, screwworms can infect people by entering through open wounds. Her assertions defy biology and existing medical knowledge since screwworms are insects and they require oxygen to survive.
The Popeye’s spokesperson explained that this restaurant location and all other franchisees cook foods at a temperature of at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit which means bacteria and other pathogens would be killed off before serving. They maintain a high standard of food safety since they have a wide reputation to uphold. Perhaps this lawsuit will bring more business to Popeye’s since they are reassuring the public that nothing suspicious about their food has been found. The corporation is fully backing its franchisee during this time.
Ensure your food service establishment is following all the appropriate food handling processes by visiting our Texas Food Handlers Regulations page. Also check our Foodborne Illness page to keep an eye out for signs of contaminated food or customers.