The famously versatile hot sauce Sriracha may be in legal hot water. Its manufacturer, Huy Fong Foods, Inc., is facing a public nuisance lawsuit brought by the town in which its manufacturing facility resides. According to the complaint, odors and irritants from the facility are causing physical harm and discomfort to the residents of the town of Irwindale. The city allegedly received several complaints about the facility and as a result arranged to meet with a representative from the company to address the problem. Although the representative reportedly agreed to take measures to correct the problem, there was no change in the emanation of offensive odors from the factory.
According to the complaint, the city issued a courtesy notice, and after several failed attempts to discuss the issue with Huy Fong Foods, it sent an official notice of violation. Ultimately it filed this lawsuit asking for the factory to be shut down until a solution is proposed and implemented.
Representatives from Huy Fong Foods have reportedly warned that the price of the popular hot sauce could increase as a result, but that seems trivial in light of the citizens of Irwindale apparently having to breathe noxious fumes akin to pepper spray.
The court denied the city’s request for a preliminary injunction against Huy Fong Foods.
Read the complaint in People ex rel. Irwindale v. Huy Fong Foods Inc., filed in the California Superior Court for the County of Los Angeles here.