Chipotle hit with new lawsuit over possible food contamination in Ohio

  • A civil action lawsuit was filed against Chipotle on Tuesday evening in Delaware County in Ohio.
  • Plaintiff Filip Syzller is asking for $25,000 after he purchased three chicken tacos on July 29 from Chipotle and then started experiencing nausea, headaches and hot flashes, court papers reviewed by CNBC said.
  • "We have been working with local officials to investigate and will continue to do so," Chipotle told CNBC in a statement.
Diners eat at a Chipotle restaurant in Chicago.
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Diners eat at a Chipotle restaurant in Chicago.

Things keep getting worse for Chipotle Mexican Grill.

An Ohio man sued Chipotle on Tuesday as state health officials investigate a "possible foodborne illness outbreak" stemming from one of the burrito chain's locations in Powell, Ohio, according to the lawsuit obtained by CNBC. Local health officials have received more than 500 calls so far — reporting nausea, diarrhea and fever, among other symptoms, after eating at the restaurant.

Plaintiff Filip Syzller is asking for $25,000 after he purchased three chicken tacos on July 29 from Chipotle and then started experiencing nausea, headaches and hot flashes, according to the lawsuit filed in Delaware County in Ohio. He was undergoing medical treatment, the lawsuit says.

"The health and safety of our customers and employees is our number one priority," Chipotle said in a statement to CNBC when asked for a comment on the suit. "We have been working with local officials to investigate and will continue to do so."

The company had told CNBC on Tuesday morning that the local health department received just two illness complaints. On Wednesday, the Delaware General Health District said it received 518 inquiries related to the outbreak and had delivered 33 stool sample kits to people who reported they were ill.

Chipotle is by no means the only restaurant to face food safety issues. McDonald's recently recalled salads at about 3,000 of its U.S. restaurants due to an outbreak of cyclosporiasis tied back to lettuce tainted by the cyclospora parasites, which is transmitted in fecal matter.

Chipotle shares rose 2.1 percent Wednesday and have risen more than 50 percent so far this year. There has been a rebound in confidence that the burrito chain's new CEO, Brian Niccol, could lead the company through a successful turnaround.