December 21, 2013

Overzealous regulators create nationwide Sriracha shortage

Filed under: Bureaucracy, Business, Government, Health, USA — Tags: , , — Nicholas @ 11:56

Baylen Linnekin on the latest attempt to be safer-than-safe in food regulation:

Sriracha rooster sauceLast week California health regulators ordered the makers of Sriracha hot sauce to suspend operations for 30 days. The 30-day hold comes despite the fact the product has been on the market for more than three decades and that “no recall has been ordered and no pathogenic bacteria have been found[.]”

So what’s the issue?

The problem, reports the Pasadena Star News, is that Sriracha is a raw food.

“Because Sriracha is not cooked, only mashed and blended, Huy Fong needs to make sure its bottles won’t harbor dangerous bacteria,” writes the Star News.

Aren’t three decades of sales sufficient proof of that fact?

“The regulations outlining this process have been in existence for years,” writes California health department official Anita Gore, in a statement she sent to L.A. Weekly, “but the modified production requirements were established for the firm this year.”

In other words, the state changed the rules of the game.

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