Campus, News

CSULB dorm residents report cases of food poisoning in the dining halls

Multiple students have reported cases of food poisoning after eating in the Parkside and Hillside dorm dining halls around mid-November.

CSULB’s residential dining services offer meal plans at a price range of $3,658 to $4,324 per academic year, according to the University Housing website. Each of the meal plans can be used at any of the three CSULB dining halls at Hillside, Parkside, or Beachside Village.

Inside of parkside dining hall
Inside of parkside dining hall Photo credit: Julia-Inez Rudy

Clarissa Pena, a first-year political science major with a 10-week meal plan, said she experienced three cases of food poisoning from the cafeteria at both Parkside and Hillside dorms after eating what she believed to be undercooked chicken.

“They served us half a chicken, and it’s been a little pink,” she said. “I just eat the chicken skin but, even then, it doesn’t sit well in my stomach.”

A sophomore criminology major at CSULB said they received food poisoning this semester from a breakfast burrito they had eaten, which contained eggs, sausage, and chicken.

This source requested to remain anonymous to hide their identity from the resident assistants.

“I ate the breakfast food after my 8 a.m. class and almost immediately my stomach started hurting,” they said. “The pain lasted all morning, and I felt like I was going to throw up. Even though I had an 11 a.m. class, I was out for about half the day because my stomach felt like it was going to fall out.”

Alfredo Macias, the director of residential dining, said the food safety and sanitation requirements of campus retail operators must meet the local and state health regulations.

“We have expanded the food safety training for the dining hall kitchen team,” Macias said. “They are trained on the top eight food allergens, and we also have certified chefs and a nutritionist on staff to help meet each students’ dietary needs.”

Keith Allen, an environmental health specialist at the Long Beach Health Department, said none of the students have contacted the epidemiology team about the cases of food poisoning.

“When someone reaches out to report food poisoning or any other foodborne illness, an online form needs to be filled out,” Allen said.

Allen said a three-day food log is used to track and find out what made the individual sick.

“It is so important to let students know of the resources we have available to help and report these kinds of incidents,” Allen said.

CSULB students who have any questions or concerns about the residential dining’s food service can contact Alfredo Macias by phone at (562) 985-4467 or via email at [email protected]

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