News and Press Releases

The United States Obtains Court-ordered Relief Against Brooklyn Slaughterhouse Selling Uninspected Poultry to the Public

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 02, 2009

Court-Approved Decree Establishes Safeguards To Protect The Public From Purchasing Poultry Products That Have Not Been Properly Inspected And Approved

Benton J. Campbell, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, today announced that the United States has entered into a consent decree with a poultry slaughterhouse, Island Farm Meat Corporation, and its President, Mohammed Aldeen. The consent decree permanently enjoins Island Farm and Aldeen from selling uninspected poultry to the general public, establishes extensive sanitary standards at the Island Farm facility, and provides for a series of penalties – including escalating monetary fines and ultimately cessation of the company’s ability to continue operations – if Island Farm engages in additional violations of the Poultry Products Inspection Act, as amended, 21 U.S.C. §§ 451, et seq. (“PPIA”). Earlier this week, the Consent Decree was approved by United States District Judge Nicholas G. Garaufis.

The government’s claims arose from several investigations conducted by the Food and Safety Inspection Services of the United States Department of Agriculture (FSIS). These investigations revealed that Island Farm and Aldeen, who operate under an exemption to the PPIA which allows them to sell uninspected poultry products to individuals for consumption in their own home, repeatedly violated the company’s exempt status by diverting uninspected poultry to retail stores for direct sale to the general public. The government commenced proceedings against the defendants with the filing of a suit alleging violations of the PPIA, United States of America v. Island Farm Meat Corporation, et al., No. CV-09-2564 (E.D.N.Y.). The litigation culminated with the entry of the Consent Decree and Judgment before Judge Garaufis.

“With the successful resolution of this matter, a significant health risk to the public has ended. This office remains committed to working with the United States Department of Agriculture to ensure that all meat and poultry products sold to the general public are properly inspected and safe,” stated United States Attorney Campbell. “We will use all means at our disposal to stop those who subject the public to risk by violating USDA regulations.” Mr. Campbell thanked the Evaluation and Enforcement Division of the United States Department of Agriculture for its investigative work, as well USDA’s Office of General Counsel for its assistance in the case.

“FSIS is dedicated to protecting the public health by ensuring that meat, poultry, and egg products are safe, wholesome, and accurately labeled” said Frank N. Busch, Program Manager for the Office of Program Evaluation Enforcement and Review.

The United States’s case was litigated by Assistant United States Attorney Kenneth Abell.



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