Chipotle quickly denied a claim from “Supergirl” actor Jeremy Jordan, but it did little to quell stock market unrest. At least not right away. Shares of the fast casual fell as much as 5.9 percent to $263 early Monday, the lowest mark in almost five years. Shares rallied and were at $275.16 heading into the lunch hour.
Jordan posted an Instagram story Thursday from a hospital bed, writing that eating at Chipotle made him sick and he “almost died.” Chipotle spokeswoman Quinn Kelsey told Bloomberg: “There is not a link and there are no other reports of illness at the restaurant.” The location hasn’t been closed, either, she added.
Kelsey said Chipotle reached out to Jordan to determine where and when he ate. “We were able to confirm that there were no reports of illness, all employees were healthy, and that all food protocols were followed and logged. We take all claims seriously, but we can’t confirm any link to Chipotle given the details he shared with us,” Kelsey told Bloomberg.
Chipotle has faced an uphill battle with consumer sentiment in recent weeks. The chain’s stock was trading at $324.30 on October 24 before plummeting to $277.01 the following day. This came on the heels of Chipotle’s third-quarter earnings, which showed a revenue surge of nearly 9 percent to $1.13 billion. However, same-store sales climbed just 1 percent. Both marks missed Wall Street expectations.
Chipotle began 2017 with some momentum, making what CEO Steve Ells called “incredible progress” from a series of food-safety outbreaks that plagued the chain in 2015. The first-quarter earnings showed same-store sales growth of 17.8 percent and a revenue increase of 28.1 percent to $1.07 billion.
But then the chain suffered another food-safety incident when more than 130 customers reported falling ill from norovirus-like symptoms at a location in Sterling, Virginia. A cellphone video then surfaced showing rodents falling from the ceiling in a Dallas-area restaurant. Both resulted in store closures.
Additionally, Chipotle dealt with a data breach that hit “most” of its 2,250 or so locations.