CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Chipotle is closing all of its stores nationwide for four hours Monday to hold a company-wide staff meeting about food safety.
The meeting is set to run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Company officials say the meeting will go over an improved "farm-to-fork" food safety program, which the chain implemented in January.
It includes paid sick leave to make sure employees will stay home when they're sick, DNA-based testing of ingredients before they're shipped to restaurants, and some changes in food preparation.
Those changes include washing and cutting tomatoes and romaine lettuce and shredding cheese in central kitchens instead of individual restaurants. And the restaurants are now blanching avocados, onions and limes. They're are also implementing new ways to marinate chicken and steak.
The meeting will take place at the chain's headquarters in Denver and will be broadcast nationwide.
The Centers for Disease Control announced on Feb. 1 that the outbreak that started in July "appears to be over."
But the damage was already done. About 500 people got sick last year. Some of the sickened diners have sued Chipotle.
The U.S. Justice Department is investigating the company for possible criminal activity.