January 22, 2019

Maggots in the Meat Case at Noe Valley Whole Foods

It’s hard to say what is worse, that there were live maggots in the meat case of the Noe Valley Whole Foods, or the store’s response to the unsanitary discovery.  A meat clerk told KRON-4 news that when he arrived at work the Monday before last,  he was shown the maggots, more then 40 of them.

Petri Dish“It was pretty bad,” meat clerk Marc Melancon, told the station. I could “actually see maggots underneath the plastic right near the meat that I was selling inside the case,”  he said. But meat sales continued throughout the day.

What’s more, the San Francisco health department said the store claimed only one dead maggot had been found, that it was not in contact with the meat and that the case was cleaned Monday, Tuesday and Friday, according to the news report. Going on that information, the department did not believe there was a public health threat.

The meat case passed an inspection on Friday, but health officials told the store that the floor drain beneath the case could have been the source of the problem and needed to be cleaned. When inspectors returned Monday, the floor drains had not been cleaned. Store management said there had been a miscommunication.

The store says the main thing is that cases are clean. But not everyone is having such an easy time moving on.  “Morally and mentally I’ve been having issues since Monday about my actions on actually selling meat because I don’t want to put anybody in risk,” Melancon told KRON-4.  “I actually want to apologize to anybody I can or any person I sold meat to.” If only his employers felt the same.


  1. Tami K. Hastings says:

    “But meat sales continued throughout the day.” “When inspectors returned Monday, the floor drains had not been cleaned.”
    It seems to me that the store management / department persons in charge need to revisit food safety management principles including: due diligence (noun) the care that a REASONABLE person exercises to avoid harm to other persons or their property.

  2. Mike Vaupel says:

    Aside from the meat casing being dirty, the refrigeration unit (compressor) for the meat case is probably broken. The meat case should be no higher than 40 degrees F, and a lower temperature would be better, say between 35 and 39. Fly eggs are what turn into maggots, and flys don’t like cold temps, so check the meat case temp. after you clean the case people. WAKE UP to common, everyday sanitation principles.

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