A viral video of a bug-infested chicken sandwich caused such a stir on social media that it prompted an investigation by the Department of Business Regulation after a Florida news outlet covered the footage.
It all started when Haile Kirkland diner visited a Pensacola, Florida location of fast-food chain Slim Chickens with her husband and noticed something in their food.
“At first I thought it was a burnt spot,” Kirkland told the local agency. USE News 3. “And then when I picked it up I said, ‘This is a complete bug.’
Kirkland said the manager couldn’t “care less” and called the restaurant’s reaction “disgusting and unprofessional”, prompting a friend of Kirkland’s who worked at the restaurant to send several videos of cockroaches crawling through the kitchen.
The diner recorded a video of the cockroach she found inside her husband’s chicken along with other videos an employee sent her and posted on Facebook.
“I wanted to cry and it was made worse by the fact that the coach didn’t care,” Kirkland told a Facebook user in the comments section. “He was all, ‘Oh, it happens.’ No, you idiot, this was never supposed to happen.”
after scoring WEAR in the post, the media contacted the state department, which then launched a formal DBPR investigation that found an alarming 20 dead cockroaches in the restaurant’s kitchen, which the store owner says were the result of the pest elimination treatment.
When DBPR came for a follow-up check-in the next day, the restaurant was “approved with no issues or violations” and thus never closed or formally closed.
“My team was immediately informed of the complaint and we responded quickly to ensure all health and safety precautions were assessed,” said the owner, who remains anonymous. “I met with our local pest elimination company the next morning at the restaurant to thoroughly inspect the facility and provide further pest elimination treatments. While we believe that all pest activity has been resolved, they will continue to come in weekly to monitor and provide additional treatments as needed.”
Kirkland was compensated with over $100 in gift cards, including $50 for Slim Chickens. She also said she spoke to the owner and received a formal apology and a full refund.
“Not going to lie they have the best chicken in town, I just need it to be clean,” Kirkland said. WEARreflecting on the idea of returning to the restaurant.