Sriracha has finally made peace with the California town where it makes much of its super popular chili sauce. For several months, Irwindale residents and lawmakers were claiming that the Huy Fong Foods factory was creating peppery fumes, that were giving neighbors headaches, irritating their eyes, and hurting their throats. Now, local legislators are dismissing a proposed bill the would have declared the factory a public nuisance and shut it down.
Mayor Mark Breceda and city council members unanimously voted to dismiss the bill, "We have to keep employment in Irwindale. We have to expand. It's good for Irwindale. It's good for California," Breceda said.
The Sriracha factory is working to make sure it doesn't bother residents anymore. They have upgraded their air filtration system, which means less fumes, which means fewer watery eyes and sneezes.
During the stand off between the town and Huy Fong Foods, the hot sauce maker received bids from two dozen other towns to move their factory there. It looks like other places would have happily dealt with the fumes for the extra jobs. The factory employees 70 full-time employees and 200 seasonal workers, producing 20 million bottles of hot sauce a year. Employees were concerned that the politicians would interfere with Sriracha's future in the town, affecting their livelihoods.
With the dispute settled, it looks like Sriracha is staying put in Irwindale. Pass the hot sauce.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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