FDA Files Lawsuit Against Detroit Sandwich-Maker

FDA Files Lawsuit Against Detroit Sandwich-MakerDecember 5, 2014 — The Justice Department and the FDA have announced a lawsuit has been filed against a Detroit-based manufacturer of ready-to-eat sandwiches sold mainly in convenience stores and gas stations, alleging that the food is prepared in filthy conditions.

No complaints or outbreaks of food poisoning have been reported from the sandwiches.

The complaint specifically warns that the tuna sandwiches are prepared in unsanitary conditions without adequate quality-control measures, as is required by federal law.

The lawsuit was filed on November 21 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan against Sandra J. Jackson, the co-owner of Scotty’s Incorporated, which does business as Bruce Enterprises and Bruce’s Fresh Products.

Prosecutors allege the company has known about sanitation problems for years, but failed to do anything to fix the problem.

The FDA inspected Scotty’s in January and February 2014. During these inspections, the FDA warned that the sandwiches “have been prepared, packed, or held under insanitary conditions whereby they may have become contaminated with filth or rendered injurious to health.”

The FDA has inspected the company five times since 2006 and documented unsanitary practices and/or violations of seafood handling laws every time. The FDA also issued a Warning Letter to the company in 2009, citing at least two inspections and observations of unsanitary practices and conditions.

According to the Detroit Free Press, Jackson says the problem is a paperwork issue and she is working to hire an expert to help write and implement the needed regulatory plan. The company has been in business for over 50 years and employs seven to eight workers.

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