Sad news for Southern California residents near the Sriracha factory in Irwindale (and good news for spice lovers): The Los Angeles Times reports that a judge has ruled that the Sriracha factory can stay open, despite complaints about the pungent fumes emanating from the building.
The city of Irwindale, Calif., filed suit against Huy Fong Foods, complaining that the pepper and garlic fumes that result from producing the hot sauce have become a "public nuisance." The city hoped to shut down the factory until the issue can be resolved, but judge Robert O'Brien rejected that bid. "You're asking for a very radical order on 24-hour notice," O'Brien reportedly said.
The factory, which makes Sriracha with 100 million pounds of pepper a year, along with two other sauces, reportedly uses a carbon-based filtration system to dissipate the garlic and pepper fumes, but residents say that's not enough. The city initially proposed a $600,000 filtration system, but the food company has been looking into other options, AP reports.