There were over 60 cases of salmonella reported in Taylor county between May 1 and August 5 and, though it was never confirmed, health officials informed the Abilene Country Club that there was a possible connection between it and 35 of the cases.
The general manager and CEO of the Abilene Country Club, Edward B. Grothuas III, issued a statement at the time which stated that, though a specific source had still not been confirmed for the cases, the Abilene Country Club fully submitted to inspections and recommendations by City of Abilene's Community Enhancement Division.
Friday, The Country Club issues a press release confirming their commitment to food safety and stating the measures that have been taken to ensure the quality of their services.
"In our effort to continually improve, we have hired a Food Safety Consultant with ASI (Leaders of Food Safety since 1948). Their purpose was to review our recent equipment and operational improvements to our food program, and make any new recommendations in all areas. Darrell Buffington was our Consultant and he brings with him 17 years of experience as a USDA Inspector and has extensive first-hand knowledge regarding the Cruise Line Food Safety Business aboard cruise ships. He was able to evaluate and help us implement actions to exceed the highest public health safety standards. He holds a B.S. degree from Texas A&M and a M.S. degree from Pacific Western University. Several staff meetings ensued and an energized plan has been adopted.
Mr. Buffington spent two days with us reviewing facilities and operations at both properties and was very helpful in emphasizing the importance of a solid Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) food safety plan. One of our long-time employees, Nicky Grothaus, has been given the specific job of working with each department to hold accountable every employee's role in a successful HACCP methodology enforced plan. Every Area has bee scrutinized and brought to the highest standard to ensure the safety of our members and their guests. Our ecent Health Department Inspection yielded the desired results:
- Fairway Property Scored 93
- Club Property Scored 97
- Club Banquet Property Scored 100
These efforts are ongoing and will continue for the benefit of our membership and everyone at our facilities."