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July 26, 2000

CORNYN FILES SUIT AGAINST FOOD WAREHOUSE FOR GROSS UNSANITARY CONDITIONS

AUSTIN - Texas Attorney General John Cornyn today announced the filing of a lawsuit against Las Colinas International Inc., d/b/a Formosa Foods ("Formosa Foods"), located in Dallas. Formosa Foods is a wholesale food establishment which distributes food to Chinese restaurants and grocery stores in Texas and four other states. After repeated inspections by the Texas Department of Health, Formosa Foods failed to remedy numerous deficiencies including rodent and insect infestations as well as unclean premises and adulterated food products.

"Consumers have the right to purchase and consume grocery products without worrying about possible contamination. I will continue to fight those companies who disregard health and safety standards," said Attorney General Cornyn.

The lawsuit was filed at the request of the Texas Commissioner of Health in state district court in Dallas County against Formosa Foods based on, but not limited to, the following alleged violations:

  • Hundreds of rodent excreta pellets were found throughout the warehouses, on floors and shelving, under, behind and on top of pallets, cases, and containers of foods, and on the floor along the warehouse walls;

  • Live and dead insects were found in cases of noodles and among canned goods;
  • Damaged and leaking food products spilled throughout the warehouses;
  • Lack of proper temperature controls and monitoring of storage of live and shucked shellfish;
  • Standing water and black mud substance on floor in the warehouses; and
  • Numerous building deficiencies which allowed rodents, pests and insects into the warehouse.

This lawsuit alleges that Formosa Foods failed to correct noted deficiencies and protect food products from contamination and adulteration in violation of the Texas Food Drug and Cosmetic Act.

The State is seeking injunctive relief from the court in order to stop the alleged unhealthy and unsanitary conditions as well as civil penalties and money to cover the costs of the State's investigations and attorneys fees. Assistant Attorney General Joyce Wein Iliya, in the Dallas office of the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division, is handling this case.

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Contact Mark Heckmann, Heather Browne, or Tom Kelley at (512) 463-2050
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