Chaos is knocking at the door of the most powerful country on earth — the California Department of Public Health has enforced harsher guidelines on the makers of Sriracha, forcing the company to hold the precious life-sustaining hot sauce for at least 30 days before shipping.
"Sauce suppliers will not be able to restock until mid-January," the Los Angeles Times reports. And some of those suppliers fear that they will run out of Sriracha, and then the businesses they supply the sauce to — restaurants and supermarkets — will switch to other brands."We have already received more than 30 angry phone calls today," Damon Chu, the president of a wholesale Asian food supplier Giant Union, told the Los Angeles Times. "It drives me crazy because this is the first time we have been in this situation," he added.
The hold is supposed to keep us safe, the California Department of Public Health says. According to Health Department spokesperson Anita Gore, the 30-day delay is supposed to "ensure an effective treatment of microorganisms present in the product" and "holding products for a period of time at a specified pH level is one method of controlling those microorganisms."
That, of course, is nonsense. Sriracha is life-sustaining manna from the gods, and if microorganisms are part of that, then so be it. Who needs the California Department of Health when faith and coalition of deities are on your side? (After a strenuous Google search, there has yet to be one death attributed to Sriracha poisoning.)
What would keep us safer is letting the rivers of Sriracha flow, dissolve the California Public Health department, and let the city of Irwindale burn. This blow to Huy Fong Foods, the makers of Sriracha, comes on top of a legal decision to shut operational parts of the company down — residents of the inconsequential town of Irwindale were complaining of fumes from the company's headquarters causing headaches and irritating their eyes and throats.
We are one step away from unmitigated lawlessness: co-workers making back-alley deals under the cover of night and selling each other into lives of sexual slavery, Sriracha king pins controlling the nation's powerful port cities like Philadelphia, and families dealing their pets away for some sauce.
"Their sauce is not easily replaced," Whiting Wu, a supplier told the Times. Those words could very well be epitaph on the gravestone of the nation we once knew as America.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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