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Mock Trial Vividly Portrays Consequences of Lax Food Handling

John Ciarametaro experienced his own ‘Perry Mason moment’ recently. It happened when Legal Seafood’s manager of Lab and Inspectional Services served as a juror during a mock trial of typical food safety litigation.

Handwshingforlife Mock TrialHandwshingforlife Mock Trial

“I attended the annual National Environmental Health Association conference in Atlantic City (NJ),” he explained, “which fulfills the continuing education units necessary to maintain my REHS/RS certification.” The conference is attended by virtually all branches of public health professionals, and includes the usual array of lectures, workshops, seminar, and technical presentations.”

“But this mock trial was a pretty cool way of dramatizing and bringing to life the realities of failures in the food safety system,” he said. “Along with Ellen Schroth (Legal’s food safety and sanitation auditing consultant for the Mid-Atlantic region), I spent an afternoon playing one member of a jury pool. We listened to final arguments, presented by real lawyers, using real facts drawn from common cases.” The prosecutor and defense attorney were played by lawyers from MarlerClark which is the high-profile firm best known for handling foodborne illness cases, especially the notorious Jack-in-the-Box contaminated meat frenzy in the 1990s. The ‘judge’ for the mock trial was portrayed by a lawyer from the host hotel, the Tropicana.

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