Judge Shuts Down Part Of Stinky Sriracha Hot Sauce Plant

The sriracha saga continues, with a Los Angeles Superior Court judge ruling yesterday that the Irwingdale, CA, plant where the “rooster sauce” is made must shut down plant operations that contribute to the smell that has been the cause of complaints from nearby residents.

The city of Irwindale sued Huy Fong Foods in October, alleging that the odor from the pepper processing in the plant was not just unpleasant but was resulting in stinging eyes, heartburn, maybe even nosebleeds, for some in the area.

The company avoided the initial shutdown request when the judge ruled that the town’s call for an immediate injunction against the plant was too last-minute.

But yesterday, the judge ordered Huy Fong to stop those parts of its operation that result in the release of the stinky fumes. All other operations at the plant may continue.

While the judge wrote that there is a “lack of credible evidence” showing that the plant fumes are actually causing the claimed maladies suffered by area residents, he nonetheless found that the odors appear to be “extremely annoying, irritating and offensive to the senses warranting consideration as a public nuisance.”

The partial shutdown is not the final legal word, but a preliminary action. However, the judge noted that the city is “likely to prevail” in declaring the odor a public nuisance.

It’s believed that the primary source of the bad smells is the processing of the chili peppers for each year’s batch of sauce. That process only takes place during a three-month period that recently ended. If that is the cause of the offending odor, then the plant may be able to continue its bottling of the sauce, meaning there is no immediate need for sriracha fans to start hoarding.

Judge orders Sriracha hot sauce plant partly closed over odors [L.A. Times]

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  1. SingleMaltGeek says:

    I’m still keeping a few of bottles in the pantry….but then, I do that anyway so I don’t have to make a special run every week or two. :D

  2. CommonC3nts says:

    First I was against this action, but the plant was built two years ago.
    Obviously the filters and dust collection system they installed initially has not worked.
    I am sorry, but a company must have proper dust collection and odor control when they move into an existing area with residential zones.
    They must invest in the proper system to prevent any odors.

    Now if this was a case of the plant existing first then oh well, but in this case the houses were there first so the company must accomodate.