Food Inspection Reportage for El Toro Taco in Homestead

This morning in "Death and Tacos" Natalie O'Neill exposed El Toro Taco's fairly recent 53 food inspection critical violations smorgasbord, but where's the link to the report, and how have their reports looked in the past?

Here's the link for the past six food inspection reports for routine food inspections conducted by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation for El Toro Taco.

Smells like something is rotten in Homestead, but it may not be the tacos. An inspection report dated January 7, 2009 finds that El Toro Taco "met all inspection standards."

A day later, January 8, 2009, another inspection report finds 53 violations and results say, "Violations require further review but are not an immediate threat to the public."

According to the reports, critical violations increased almost 600% from 6 to 35, overnight, and six months later no record of a follow-up inspection.

Short Order spoke to Alexis Lambert, spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, to get some insight on the world of restaurant inspections.

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NT: Is it normal procedure to conduct an inspection from one day to the next?
AL: You see there under inspection report where it says complaint full?

That indicates the inspection was based on a complaint filed with the

department and if there were 2 complaints filed within a short time it

is normal practice to follow up on those complaints with an inspection.

In the case of El Toro Taco the restaurant inspector "recommended an administrative complaint

based on the January 8th inspection. There can be additional education, fines, suspension and revocation of license, but that doesn't happen often. It goes through a legal proceeding and negotiation with the division of Hotels and Restaurants through the state of Florida and they'll reach a penalty which they feel is appropriate based on the type of penalty which the restaurant incurred.

One of the final steps in that process is the followup inspection. This is a legal proceeding where everybody is afforded due process and although we take public safety very seriously we're not in the business of putting restaurants out of business we just want them to move into compliance."

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