Unable to see Eloquent collection on live version of site

I’ve recently begun the migration process from a site I’ve built using Slim2, Illuminate, and Eloquent. The site has a registration system in place which is working great. Visitors are able to register, receive an activation email and log in. The application seems to be reading from and writing to the Users table of the database just fine. Registered users should also have the ability to store data in another table and read from that as well. Currently in my local version, when I do…

 $collection = collect($app->item->where('user_id', $userId)->get());

$pack = $collection->where('status', 1);

… in the route, and then do a print_r($pack); I can see the contents just fine, but on the live version, I get the following…

Illuminate\Support\Collection Object ( [items:protected] => Array ( ) )

Doing a print_r($collection) works fine on the live version and the local version. What am I missing?

It should be
$pack = $collection->where('status', 1)->all();

I really wanted that to work, but this returns

Array ( )

An empty array???

Just to verify that the ‘status’ column is indeed being read correctly, I did the following…

$collection = collect($app->item->where('user_id', $userId)->where('status', 1)->get());

…and It worked correctly returning only the items with a status of 1.