updated 8/6/2009 5:34:43 PM ET 2009-08-06T21:34:43

Like most restaurants, the Burger King in this St. Louis suburb has a no shoes, no shirt, no service policy.

And baby, do they enforce it.

Too much so, the company admitted, after apologizing for restaurant workers who asked a mother to leave because her 6-month-old wasn't wearing shoes.

Jennifer Frederich, her mother and Frederich's infant daughter, Kaylin, stopped at the Burger King in Sunset Hills on Sunday. The baby was shoeless — Frederich figured tiny baby feet were immune from the rule.

But workers told the family to leave because the shoeless baby was violating a health code. In fact, shoelessness is not a health code violation in St. Louis County.

Frederich told KTVI-TV that she and her mother ate hurriedly and left before they could be kicked out. Frederich did not have a listed phone number, and The Associated Press could not reach her for comment.

Burger King released a statement Thursday indicating workers had taken the no shoes, no service policy too far.

"Our franchisee, which independently owns and operates this restaurant, apologizes for this guest's experience," the statement read. "The franchisee is retraining his restaurant team on the proper use of the 'no shoes' policy."

The franchise owner also contacted Frederich to apologize in person.

Frederich told the TV station the flap was a bit overblown, and she hoped no one would be fired. But she appreciated Burger King's apology.

Burger King, based in Miami, is the nation's second-largest hamburger chain, with 11,800 restaurants worldwide.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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