The barefoot Taco John's employee in Iowa is a 31-year old team leader at the restaurant who had mowed the grass outside the franchise earlier in August, then walked into the kitchen area that was visible to the customer, the Des Moines Register reported.
The original customer who snapped the photo included a caption that read: "This woman was preparing food with bare feet, no uniform, her bra and chest hanging out all over the place, she was pouring sweat, wiping it off with her hands and not washing them. I asked for the manager — she WAS the manager!! She was extremely rude because I was upset with her appearance and behavior."
The Register reported that the employee made the food for her and her friends, but did not pay for it, a violation of company policy.
In a statement provided by a spokeswoman for Taco John's, the company said it first became aware of the situation last August and immediately contacted the owners of the Taco John's franchise.
"We worked with the franchise owners who were very responsive, and handled the matter immediately," Taco John's statement read. "Of course, our standards require that franchisee employees wear uniforms, including safety shoes and hats or visors while working in the restaurant. It is never acceptable for workers to work barefoot or in skimpy clothing.
"The franchise owners of this location immediately investigated the situation and took appropriate actions," the statement continued. "The franchise owners regret that this situation occurred and have apologized to their guests for the bad judgment and poor behavior of their employee. However, we trust that guests will give this Taco John's another chance to earn their business!"