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Meat plant not fully cleaned: Documents

A top-to-bottom scrubbing after a deadly listeriosis outbreakapparently didn't fully cleanse a Maple Leaf Foods plant of mould,slime and meat debris, newly released documents show.

A top-to-bottom scrubbing after a deadly listeriosis outbreak apparently didn't fully cleanse a Maple Leaf Foods plant of mould, slime and meat debris, newly released documents show.

Inspectors found a troubling lack of hygiene at the company's Toronto facility just weeks after it reopened last year from a temporary shutdown for cleaning, according to inspection reports.

Maple Leaf says inspectors were looking more carefully at the plant after the listeriosis crisis, so naturally they found more problems.

And the company’s chief food-safety officer, Dr. Randy Huffman, said Maple Leaf put in place more than 200 new standard operating procedures after the listeriosis outbreak but it took workers time to learn them. He said that through that learning process the company has continuously improved its approach to food safety.

Huffman said there was never any reason to be worried about the safety of the food produced at the plant. The head of the federal food inspectors union said, however, that some of what the inspectors reported seeing at the time were “things that people should be concerned about.”

 
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