Are you disgusted by your co-workers' eating habits at the office?

A recent Gallup poll finds two thirds of American workers have lunch “al desco” more than once a week, and many New Jerseyans are less than thrilled about it.

“It’s the smell of the food and the chomping, not really caring about your co-workers that are sitting around you. It’s too loud. It sounds like cows sometimes,” said Taquira Connor from Burlington.

Elise from Trenton agreed.

“Usually it’s the smell of the food. There’s certain scents that I’m really kind of sensitive to,” she said.

“Another problem we have is in the kitchen area, because the majority of the people in our office are male, and they’re not really that good about cleaning.”

Kevin Jones from Plumsted  said what bothers him most is people “not having consideration for others around them and eating with their mouth open."

"Just thinking they’re in their own space but really it’s a space shared by other co-workers. I think they’re spreading their germs amongst not only their desks but everybody else as well."

Lisa from Hamilton said she enjoys eating fish, but not the aroma of it.

“It’s definitely the smell. When you’ve got different people — someone’s got tuna, someone’s got shrimp — you don’t want to smell that all together. It’s terrible,” she said.

Eileen Sheehee from Lawrenceville said the smell of fish is disgusting.

“Fish is probably the worst, if somebody is heating up fish in the microwave, that’s probably the worse smell, just because it’s off-putting. The smell of fish — yuck!”

Gwen McNulty from Huntington Valley, Pennsylvania, said sometimes smells can be bothersome, but there’s something worse.

“The loud noises, the crunching and the mouth being open — I can’t stand the little noises, that’s all I start to think about and it’s just irritating. You just want to tell them to just stop it,” she said.

Debbie Horton from Langhorne, Pennsylvania, said she doesn’t mind crunching.

“I’m not saying the food’s not good but it’s disgusting, they’re sitting there chewing and I can smell it," she said.

Don Downs of West Windsor doesn’t like a mix of different smells all together.

"It’s the smell of some of the foods, some of the ethnic foods, it just dominates the office,” he said.

But not everybody is unhappy when their co-workers chow down.

“What’s most annoying for me is they don’t offer me a bite. It all smells good and I love to eat and I don’t even get to sample anything," said Denise Lofton from Ewing. "That’s just not right."

Contact reporter David Matthau at

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