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Could new troubles fire up Sriracha maker’s move to Philly? p3

12/21/2013 | Real Estate Blog

We have been talking about some legal challenges facing the California company that manufactures Sriracha sauce. Just two weeks after the company, Huy Fong Foods Inc., received a court order for a partial shutdown, the California Department of Public Health started to enforce regulations that would hold the company’s products for 30 days before shipping.

When Philadelphia Councilman at-Large Jim Kenney first learned of the company’s situation, he wrote to CEO and founder David Tran inviting him to move Huy Fong’s operations to Philly. In the letter, Kenney explained that Philadelphia is full of die-hard fans of the chili sauce. Indeed, the product has die-hard fans all over the world.

In fact, no sooner was the 30-day delay in shipping announced than headlines like The Wire’s “America Plummets into Pandemonium: Sriracha Black Market Looms” started to appear. Some of the outcry was overstated for comic effect, but there is also a kernel of truth in it. Huy Fong’s products, especially the Sriracha sauce, are quite popular.

It seems an odd coincidence that the state would choose to crack down on Huy Fong at the same time the company and the city are fighting over the public nuisance matter. Regulators say, however, that the rules went into effect earlier this year, that the company knew the 30-day hold was necessary for products made fresh and shipped uncooked. By delaying shipments, the company and the state can make sure the sauces are free of harmful microorganisms, as the law requires.

What does all of this have to do with Philadelphia?

We’ll talk about that in our next post.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “Sriracha maker ordered to halt shipping until mid-January,” Frank Shyong, Dec. 11, 2013Pasadena Star-News, “Defiant Sriracha CEO David Tran says ‘we don’t make tear gas,’ ruling could lead to 200,000 less bottles a day,” Sarah Favot, Nov. 27, 2013Philadelphia Business Journal, “Sriracha plant to Philadelphia gaining momentum,” Jared Shelly, Dec. 2, 2013