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NC now allows rare burgers!

carolinadawg May 17, 2012 04:11 AM

The NC Commission for Public Health has adopted new rules that now allow restaurants in the state to legally serve burgers rare. I think the new rules go into effect on July 1. Here is an article from the Wilmington Sun about the change:


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  1. danna RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 05:54 AM

    AWESOME!!! Common Sense made it's way into the law? amazing.

    1. c
      chazzer RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 05:59 AM

      Best food news I've heard in a long time. No more overcooked burgers!!!!!!!!!

      1. Scirocco RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 06:45 AM

        I had heard that this was happening this summer. Something on schedule???!! Amazing. But seriously, that is wonderful news for this still-mooin' burger lover!

        1. meatn3 RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 08:00 AM


          I'm all for public safety, but the burger policy was just beyond ridiculous. We might need to carry copies of the change to back up the legality our burger orders!

          1. b
            bbqme RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 08:53 AM

            On a related note, I had a really good, properly cooked medium burger at G2B in Durham last week. Had a charcoal flavor to it as well.

            1. j
              Jerzeegirl RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 09:07 AM

              Hopefully the state of South Carolina will smarten up & do the same.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Jerzeegirl
                kathleen purvis RE: Jerzeegirl May 17, 2012 02:00 PM

                Jerzee, I double-checked with South Carolina this afternoon just to make sure. South Carolina already has the menu-disclaimer option. If you are over 18 and the restaurant has a reminder that eating undercooked meat is a health risk, you can order a burger rare or medium-rare, even though the state's standard is 155 degrees.

                1. re: kathleen purvis
                  Jerzeegirl RE: kathleen purvis May 18, 2012 06:10 AM

                  Thanks, Kathleen. I'll definitely be checking that out on our next visit to SC.

              2. southernitalian RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 09:35 AM

                A relatively large number of restaurants in Charlotte have been ignoring this rule for some time.

                2 Replies
                1. re: southernitalian
                  danna RE: southernitalian May 17, 2012 11:19 AM

                  most places around Greenville SC and Asheville are downright huffy if you ask. (notable exceptions of Blockhouse and Bohemian)

                  1. re: danna
                    Naco RE: danna May 17, 2012 12:09 PM


                    Here all the restaurants seem to take the Potemkin Village approach: they ask you how you want your burger cooked and bring you a well done burger, regardless of what you asked for.

                2. m
                  mpjmph RE: carolinadawg May 17, 2012 05:14 PM

                  Just read on the N&O website that the rule change is expected to take effect in September. This change is one of many as the state adopts federal food handling guidelines, including a requirement to wear gloves when handling ready-to-eat food.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: mpjmph
                    cackalackie RE: mpjmph May 18, 2012 04:39 AM

                    I just read that article too.

                    But this part confused me:
                    "the rule prohibits serving undercooked or raw foods to children."

                    Does this mean that my kids won't be able to order rare burgers - or sushi, for that matter?

                    1. re: cackalackie
                      kathleen purvis RE: cackalackie May 18, 2012 06:46 AM

                      That's correct on the rare burgers. Sushi is a different kind of protein and is handled differently. And mpjmph is correct (my stories run in both The Observer and the News & Observer as part of a shared content arrangement).

                      While the burger controversy is getting the most attention, what's actually happening is a sweeping change in the N.C. food code that will affect a lot of things in food handling. My food-safety sources are very excited about it.

                      Moving to adopting a form of the FDA food code is something that many health experts have wanted here for a long time. It will simplify changing to adapt to new science, and it also gives N.C. access to the latest research.

                      By basing our state code on the federal code, our state health officials also become a part of the dialogue when the federal code is updated every two years.

                      1. re: cackalackie
                        rockycat RE: cackalackie May 18, 2012 06:50 AM

                        So does that mean I can order a rare burger for my kid, then hand it to her, since it's really "my" burger and was served to me? Will the restaurant call the food cops on me? I get the CYA aspect, but in practicality it's meaningless. I'm sure if your kid wants to eat a rare burger there won't be any problem.

                    2. 9
                      9lives RE: carolinadawg May 18, 2012 04:51 AM

                      That's good news. I have family in SC and they had the "well done ground meat rule." I remember going for a burger with my dad and him ordering the burger as rare as you could make it . I asked him about his order. He was usually a MR eater and he explained the rule.

                      Glad to read from KP above that the rule has changed.

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