Business

Sriracha lawsuit: Irwindale's temporary restraining order denied

Thursday, October 31, 2013

A judge on Thursday denied the city of Irwindale's request for a temporary restraining order against the company that makes Sriracha hot sauce.

An attorney for the city of Irwindale said she wasn't surprised the request was denied, as they are very hard to get. Both sides are due back in court on Nov. 22.

According to some residents, a smell that wafts from the Huy Fong Foods factory has caused headaches, watery eyes and even a burning sensation in the throat. The city is demanding that the plant install a half-million-dollar filtration system.

Huy Fong Foods uses 100 million pounds of peppers a year to make the sauce. The plant does have exhaust fans on the roof for ventilation, and Huy Fong Foods says it passed an inspection last week by the South Coast Air Quality Management District.

Not all residents are bothered by the reported smell. In fact, some say they have not smelled anything.

"I don't smell it, that's why I can't say anything, because I don't smell it. Why people are complaining, I don't know," said Catarina Young, who lives near the plant.

The company opened its 650,000-square-foot facility two years ago. Owner David Tran says the city was thrilled then to have Hoy Fong Foods, but they are not so friendly now.

The business of peppers has proven profitable. The company took in $85 million last year, so the city says the company can afford to make some changes.

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