Panera Bread has issued a recall of all cream cheese products from its U.S. bakery cafes over fears of listeria contamination.
The chain said the recall was out of "an abundance of caution" after samples of one product from a single production day showed positive for listeria monocytogenes bacteria. Exposure to the bacteria can cause fever and diarrhea, with particularly dangerous symptoms for pregnant women and unborn children.
Products recalled have an expiration date on or before April 2, 2018.
The associated facility stopped production, as well.
According to the CDC, about 1,600 people become infected with listeria each year, killing about 260.
If you have these products, discard them immediately and contact Panera Bread Customer Service at 1-855-6-PANERA from 5 a.m. to 10 p.m. CST Monday through Sunday or visit panera.custhelp.com for a full refund.
The chain has announced that it’s rolling out its popular brown bread to grocery stores nationwide. The bread will be available to customers for purchase in three different forms: an eight-pack of heat-and-serve dinner rolls, a two-pack with mini baguettes or pre-sliced sandwich loaves.
The rolls and baguettes have a suggested price of $3.49, while the sandwich loaves are listed for $4.49.
The bread made from whole wheat flour is similar in calorie count to bread from other brands, coming in at just 110 calories per dinner roll and 80 calories per loaf slice.
People who have tried it reportedly have confirmed that it’s just as soft, chewy and slightly sweet as it is when you visit the Cheesecake Factory – just heat up the rolls or baguettes in the oven for five minutes at 350 degrees. Once they’re done, top them with butter or your favorite spread to add flavor.
The brown bread is part of the restaurant’s Cheesecake Factory at Home line, which includes several other products — cheesecake mix, coffee creamer and chocolates — that are available at grocery stores.
While the $5 footlong from Subway is one of the best bites for your buck in the fast food industry, business owners aren’t always fond of the deal. Some of them say it could even threaten their business.
Keith Miller, who owns three Subways in North Carolina, told The Washington Post that the ingredients in the sandwich cost him about $2, but after paying his employees and adding up all the overhead — electric, gas, rent and supplies — his store brings in a measly profit on the hoagies. When the company decided to drop the prices of its famous subs to $4.99, Miller and a number of other franchise owners sent a letter telling the higher-ups that such a move would have them staring down bankruptcy.
Subway isn’t the only company to keep prices low with the hopes of enticing hungry customers; Taco Bell, Wendy’s and McDonald’s both boast dollar menus. You’d probably have a tough time finding a franchise owner happy with the low-priced items, but Subway owners have been the most vocal about their complaints. They recently wrote a petition to the big wigs at the company, asking them to reconsider. Owners admitted that the cheap options bring in more customers but that even the increase in traffic “insufficient to make up for the lost margins.” The petition was signed by almost 900 people in 39 states.
Subway says the promotions are optional and that the majority of franchise owners don’t share Miller’s views. In a statement given to the Post, Subway claimed “we are in constant communication with our Franchisees and Development Agents … they are actively involved in many aspects of our decision-making process, and we welcome and encourage their feedback.”
As the minimum wage continues to rise, the prices of some products (like Subway’s sandwiches) haven’t risen to the level necessary for owners to make a profit. Miller says that when he bought his first franchise, he was bringing in profit margins as high as 18 percent. But that number has drastically dropped in recent years.
There are also a number of other problems facing franchise owners. The fast food restaurant industry has become more crowded and, on top of that, people are shopping less and less at fast food stops. And for most owners, the problems show no sign of letting up.
First lady Melania Trump, along with second lady Karen Pence, traveled to Texas on Wednesday to visit with first responders and check on Hurricane Harvey relief efforts. And if there’s anything politicians (or in this case, politicians’ spouses) love to do when they’re on a visit, it’s make a stop at a purveyor of local cuisine. Trump and Pence flew through Corpus Christi, which means Whataburger.
According to social media reports (including tweets from reporters along for the trip, as well as a White House official), the first and second lady stopped by the venerable Texas burger chain and walked out with at least some of those famous fries. The rest of their order is unknown (so far), but the tweets about the pit stop are quite a journey.
Reporters in the press pool said the first and second lady treated them to fries.
Officials in Texas approved. The orange and the white, as ever, proved to be a unifying force.
According to the San Antonio Express-News, Trump and Pence stopped at the Whataburger at 602 Padre Island Drive.
Ray Yoder celebrated his 81st birthday at a Cracker Barrel with his wife, Wilma, on Monday, but the couple had something even bigger to celebrate. The Goshen, Indiana, couple visited all 645 Cracker Barrels in America.
“Travel was in our blood and we’ve always liked it,” Ray said. “And, of course, the best place to eat was at Cracker Barrel. It took the boredom out of the highway to eat there because it was so much like home — we could order what we liked, and they always had what we liked.”
The employees at the Tualatin, Oregon, Cracker Barrel helped make the visit special by giving customized aprons and forming a “clap tunnel” for the pair, cheering them on when they arrived. Cracker Barrel also gave the Yoders an all-expenses-paid trip to the Oregon location.
Cracker Barrel even made a video to commemorate the achievement:
Chick-fil-A this week unveiled its new breakfast bowl, the Hash Brown Scramble, adding it to the breakfast menu at all of its participating restaurants nationwide.
The new menu item is made with “tot-style” hash browns, scrambled eggs, Monterey Jack and cheddar cheeses, and a choice of either sliced chicken nuggets or pork sausage. It can also be ordered as a burrito, with the ingredients wrapped in a soft tortilla. The dishes are served with a side of jalapeño salsa.
Chick-fil-A officials said in a release that the new menu item is the “first breakfast bowl for the national quick-service restaurant company.” The chain previously added an Egg White Grill as an “on-the-go” breakfast option.
“At Chick-fil-A, we understand the importance of breakfast and want to provide a wide range of options to our guests who are looking for a fast and delicious breakfast,” Amanda Norris, senior director of menu development for Chick-fil-A, said in a release. “We’ve definitely seen an increase in popularity for breakfast bowls, and the Hash Brown Scramble combines two fan favorites – our chicken nuggets and hash browns.”
The Hash Brown Scramble Bowl has 450 calories and 30 grams of protein when made with nuggets. The Hash Brown Scramble Burrito will replace the current Breakfast Burrito.
Chick-fil-A customers in the states of New York and New Jersey, and cities of San Diego, Columbia, S.C., and Washington, D.C. test-marketed the Hash Brown Scramble and two other potential breakfast items in the fall of 2016.
A new pop-up restaurant, run by celebrity chef celebrity chef Anne Burrell, is set to feature a Cheetos-inspired three-course menu.
Mashable reported that The Spotted Cheetah is set to open Aug. 15 for two days in New York.
The restaurant will feature an unconventional three-course menu, which will include Cheetos meatballs, Flamin’ Hot Limón tacos, Flamin’ Hot white cheddar mac n’ Cheetos and Cheetos Sweetos crusted cheesecake, among several other Cheetos-inspired dishes and desserts.
“I had so much fun curating this specially crafted, one-of-a-kind menu for the first Cheetos restaurant, Burrell said in a news release about the restaurant. “I can’t wait to see guests’ reactions.”
Prices for a three-course meal range from $8 to $22, according to Forbes.
For those who won’t be able to make the once-in-a-lifetime Cheetos pilgrimage to New York, the recipes will also be released online on Aug. 15 in a free digital cookbook.
Chick-fil-A has begun testing family style meals in three U.S. cities with plans to continue the offerings through November.
The Family Style Meals include one entrée, two sides and eight mini rolls with the option to add additional entrees, sides and beverages.
The meals, which are served with plates, utensils and condiments, are made to serve up to four people.
“Our customers told us that they wanted an even more convenient way to share meals at home or on the go, so we worked directly with a group of parents to design every part of Family Style Meals -- down to the cutlery caddy that features five unique conversation starter questions to help customers connect over mealtime,” Matt Abercrombie, Chick-fil-A manager of menu development, said in a news release. “Mealtime should be an enjoyable experience that brings family and friends together, not an extra stress in the day.”
Customers can choose one of four entrees -- 12 Chick-n-Strips, four Original Chick-fil-A Chicken Breasts, 30 Chick-fil-A Nuggets or four Grilled Chicken Breasts -- and two of six sides, including baked beans, waffle potato chips, fruit cup, macaroni and cheese and side salad.
The Family Style Meals are being sold for $29.99 in Greensboro, North Carolina, Phoenix, Arizona, and San Antonio, Texas, until November 18.
“We heard that for a lot of people who are in charge of planning dinner, it’s really not that enjoyable,” Abercrombie said, according to Business Insider. “Some parents said ‘I don’t even eat until after my family is fed.’ That was a really big ‘aha!’ for us.”
Chick-fil-A is testing the options in an effort to determine whether the Family Style Meals are to be offered in other cities. The company is also using the time to decide whether it will offer beans and macaroni and cheese as permanent side items.
The beans are kettle-cooked with bacon and brown sugar. The mac and cheese is made of a blend of cheddar, parmesan and romano cheeses.
Read more at Chick-fil-A.
Talk about a sweet deal.
On Friday, Krispy Kreme customers can buy a dozen Original Glazed doughnuts for 80 cents "with the purchase of any dozen at regular menu price," the restaurant chain announced in a news release Monday.
The promotion, offered at participating stores in the United States and Canada, comes as the Winston-Salem, North Carolina-based company celebrates its 80th anniversary.
“The joy created by our Original Glazed doughnut and its secret recipe spans generations, and that is certainly something to celebrate,” Jackie Woodward, Krispy Kreme chief marketing officer, said in a statement. “It’s remarkable that for 80 years, Krispy Kreme’s commitment to delivering world-class doughnuts the Krispy Kreme way – hot, fresh and now – has not changed.”
A group of protesters picked one of the busiest days of the year to interrupt lunch at a Florida Chick-fil-A.
The incident, which was captured on video and uploaded to Facebook, showed a number of people in cow suits covered in fake blood entering a Chick-fil-A near Tampa.
A restaurant manager called 911, but the protesters had already left by the time police arrived, WTVT reported.
“We came in there with the approach to show the reality of this is what’s happening to these animals,” Kayla Leaming, an organizer with Direct Action Everywhere, told WTVT.
Leaming told the TV station: “We feel like that was feeding into the speciesism that we’re trying to fight. Speciesism is basically just the idea that one life is more important than the other, simply because of the body they were born into.”
One of the protesters had a fake knife with fake blood on it, which scared the kids, Leacock wrote on Facebook.
“There were young children there who saw everything happen and couldn't tell the difference between it being real or fake,” Leacock wrote.
“I'm all for everyone having their own opinion, but when you come into a place full of children, with a knife in hand and proceed to cut the throats of a person dressed up as a chicken and a cow, all to get a point across, that's going [too] far,” she added.
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