Local Restaurants Still Serving Tomatoes - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Local Restaurants Still Serving Tomatoes

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YAKIMA, Wash. -- Restaurants continue to deal with the affects of the salmonella outbreak. Tomatoes have been pulled off many menus, but we found a local restaurant whose workers have done their homework and are serving safe tomatoes.

At Santiago's Gourmet Mexican restaurant just about every item on the menu comes with tomatoes on it.

The owner's say they got confirmation letters from all of their growers assuring them their produce is safe.

"It's a major concern to make sure our food that we serve at the restaurant is quality and free of any diseases that would make anyone sick. That would be death to a restaurant," said Jar Arcand.

That's the reason why most fast food franchises have pulled tomatoes from their menus, while other restaurants have received the okay to keep serving up them up.

Here in Yakima Santiago's owner Jar Arcand checked with his producers in Newman California and they assured him in multiple letters that their tomatoes were safe.

"First thing Monday morning we contacted our local produce people and discussed the issue on it."

Jar is more than welcome to share those letters with anyone who's concerned about the tomatoes.

Not all restaurants are as prepared as jar is to answer questions. That's the biggest concern of diners we caught up with today who had this message to managers.

"Educate the employees so they can educate the customers," said Charlie LaPointe.

Others are playing even safer than that.

"I just choose not to eat them until all the signs come down," said Samantha LaPointe.

At Santiago's Jar says even though he's prepared with answers he hasn't had anyone ask about the safety of his tomatoes.

"I think if you had a couple hundred cases in Washington everyone would be concerned, but I think it's a concern that people trust the places the go and visit that we're doing a good job."

If you're thinking of buying tomatoes for yourself it's Plum, Roma and Red Round tomatoes that have been affected. Make sure you check with your grocer that their tomatoes come from an area that's been given the all clear.

Also, if you have any tomatoes that are suspect you should throw them in the trash and not in compost carts or piles.