News update:May 12, 2010

Stomach-turning processing plant fined and closed

A New Zealand woman whose company slaughtered thousands of poultry in what a judge described as stomach-turning conditions has been fined more than NZ$23,000 in a case brought by the New Zealand Food Safety Authority (NZFSA).

NZFSA said Ling Zhang and her company Ling Ling Poultry pleaded guilty in court last week to four charges under the Animal Products Act.
The judge fined Zhang NZ$20,000 (€8,980) for selling animal product that has not been processed in line with the Act and $3000 (€ 1,350) for not having a registered risk management programme, plus court costs.
The judge stated: “Anyone viewing that barn in the manner in which those chickens were slaughtered, their stomach would turn.” He convicted and discharged the company as it was no longer trading.
In 2007, an NZFSA animal products officer found four people slaughtering poultry for the company in a barn. The premises had no risk management programme. It also had no electricity, running water, refrigeration or sanitation.
It was found that between December 2006 and October 2007, Ling Ling Poultry bought about 57,000 live birds, which were processed and sold to restaurants and butchers in the Auckland area.

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