Saturday, September 6, 2008

FOLLOW UP: Outback Steakhouse Potential Contamination Issue

Cynthia Kupper has asked that I send the following letter. Thanks!
Madelyn Smith
GFRAP Manager

Gluten-Free Diners,

Gluten-Free Restaurant Awareness Program (GFRAP) and Gluten Intolerance Group of NA (GIG) would like to advise you what we have been doing to resolve the issue about bread being used in some brown sugar containers at various Outback Steakhouse locations to prevent hardening of the brown sugar.

This issue came up a few months ago. As soon as we heard about it, we immediately contacted Outback Corporate offices and followed the chain of emails showing the corrective actions taken at that time.

Recently this issue has come up again. I sent the notices posted by Connie Sarros to Outback and again very promptly, they responded (on a Sunday – no less). I have continued to send every post on the subject and am addressing the issue at the top levels of Outback, all the way down to the local restaurant.

Since it has come to Outback’s attention that this was not an isolated case, they are in communication with all restaurants to change this practice at a number of levels, including adding information into their regular communication and training channels. As with all things in large corporations, it takes time to see the change fully implemented – but they are working on it.

It is important that the local restaurants not only understand the potential
dangers of this practice, but also follow the corporate policies set in place.
GFRAP has a strong relationship with Outback regarding their menus and training. We communicate with them on a weekly basis. Rest assured this issue will be resolved.

GFRAP and the GFRAP participating restaurants appreciate feedback about your dining experiences and the program. Please feel free to send comments to:

Cynthia Kupper, RD, Executive Director
Gluten Intolerance Group of North America
31214 - 124 Ave SE, Auburn WA 98092
P: 253-833-6655, ext. 104; F: 253-833-6675;;

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