Chipotle shares fall after OH customer illnesses

Chipotle signage

Chipotle signage

It said it implemented its food-safety-response protocols, which include replacing the food and a cleaning of the restaurant. Chipotle spokeswoman Laurie Schalow told Business Insider Chipotle planned to reopen the restaurant Tuesday pending approval from the local health department. BMO Capital Markets lifted their price target on Chipotle Mexican Grill from $350.00 to $420.00 and gave the company a "market perform" rating in a research report on Friday.

Dozens of people reported symptoms of illness like nausea, diarrhea, and vomit after eating at the Chipotle Mexican Grill on Sawmill Parkway in Powell. Business Insider reported late-Monday that more than 170 people said they fell ill after eating at a restaurant in OH.

The burrito chain briefly closed down one of its restaurants in Powell, Ohio Monday after a number of customers became sick. On Tuesday, shares of Chipotle were down more than 7 percent, to around $432, in afternoon trading. Results from test were pending, the health department said.

Traci Whittaker, a public information officer, said the department wasn't aware of the pathogen that caused the illnesses, according to Reuters.

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"In most situations this would be a horrifying kiss of death, but with Chipotle it is baked into the brand's story", said Eric Schiffer, CEO at Reputation Management Consultants.

"We acted quickly and closed this single restaurant out of an abundance of caution yesterday".

It is also the first major food safety issue under new Chief Executive Brian Niccol as he works to bring back customers to the Mexican food chain that once was an investor darling. "Based on the food protection procedures followed by the facility, the inspection team found no reason for the facility to not reopen", said the Delaware General Health District in a July 31 statement. Wells Fargo & Company MN now owns 92,320 shares of the restaurant operator's stock valued at $29,830,000 after purchasing an additional 1,907 shares during the period.

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