District Court Orders Illinois Sprouts And Soybean Products Company To Comply With Food Safety Rules

A federal court permanently enjoined a Chicago firm from preparing and distributing adulterated sprouts and soybean products in violation of federal law, the Department of Justice announced today.

In a civil complaint filed September 15, 2020 at the request of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the United States alleged that Fortune Food Product, Inc., company president Steven Seeto, and supervisor Tiffany Jiang violated the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act by growing sprouts and preparing soy products that FDA inspections showed did not comply with food safety regulations. According to the complaint, FDA issued a warning letter to the company in 2018, and tests in 2018 and 2019 revealed Listeria species inside the facility and E. coli in water used to irrigate sprouts. 

“The food consumers buy must be safe to eat,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Bossert Clark of the Justice Department’s Civil Division.  “The Department of Justice will continue to partner with the FDA to ensure that companies follow food safety rules and prepare food in sanitary conditions.” 

The defendants agreed to be bound by a consent decree filed with the complaint in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.  The order entered by the court permanently enjoins the defendants from violating the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and the Produce Safety Rule, and it requires Fortune Food to stop growing and packing sprouts or preparing other foods unless it complies with specific remedial measures set forth in the injunction.

“We are committed to protecting the food supply and when a company fails to follow the law, we will take action,” said FDA Chief Counsel Stacy Cline Amin, J.D.  “The FDA worked closely with DOJ to obtain this injunction and protect consumers.”

Trial Attorney Douglas Ross of the Civil Division’s Consumer Protection Branch represented the United States with the assistance of Associate Chief Counsel for Enforcement William Thanhauser of FDA’s Office of the Chief Counsel, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois.

For more information about the Consumer Protection Branch and its enforcement efforts, visit its website at https://www.justice.gov/civil/consumer-protection-branch. For more information about the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Illinois, visit its website at https://www.justice.gov/usao-ndil

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    The Department of Justice Civil Rights Division has opened an investigation into whether the public contracting and procurement practices of Kansas City, Missouri comply with the U.S. Constitution and the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
    [Read More…]
  • Seven North Carolina Tax Preparers Plead Guilty to Conspiring to Defraud the IRS
    In Crime News
    Seven Charlotte, North Carolina tax return preparers pleaded guilty to conspiracy to defraud the United States by preparing and filing false tax returns, announced Principal Deputy Assistant General Richard E. Zuckerman of the Justice Department’s Tax Division, U.S. Attorney R. Andrew Murray for the Western District of North Carolina, and Special Agent in Charge Matthew D. Line of the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI).
    [Read More…]
  • National Health Care Fraud and Opioid Takedown Results in Charges Against 345 Defendants Responsible for More than $6 Billion in Alleged Fraud Losses
    In Crime News
    Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian C. Rabbitt of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Assistant Director Calvin Shivers of the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division, Deputy Inspector General Gary Cantrell of the Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General (HHS-OIG) and Assistant Administrator Tim McDermott of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) today announced a historic nationwide enforcement action involving 345 charged defendants across 51 federal districts, including more than 100 doctors, nurses and other licensed medical professionals. 
    [Read More…]
  • On the Passing of Former Marshallese President Litokwa Tomeing
    In Crime Control and Security News
    Michael R. Pompeo, [Read More…]
  • Remarks to the Community of Democracies 20th Anniversary Virtual Conference
    In Human Health, Resources and Services
    Stephen Biegun, Deputy [Read More…]
  • Utah Man and His Company Indicted for Wildlife Trafficking
    In Crime News
    A Utah man and his company were charged in an indictment today with violating the Endangered Species Act and Lacey Act for their role in illegal wildlife trafficking, announced Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Jonathan D. Brightbill of the Justice Department’s Environment and Natural Resources Division and U.S. Attorney John W. Huber of the District of Utah.
    [Read More…]
  • NASA Maps Beirut Blast Damage
    In Space
    Scientists are using [Read More…]
  • Senior State Department Officials Previewing Secretary Pompeo’s Travel to Germany, Senegal, Angola, Ethiopia, Saudi Arabia, and Oman
    In Women’s News
    Office of the [Read More…]
  • Justice Department Settles Sexual Harassment and Race Discrimination Lawsuit Against Manager and Owners of Virginia Rental Properties
    In Crime News
    The Justice Department today announced that Gary T. Price, a manager of rental properties in and around Harrisonburg, Virginia, together with owners of the properties, Alberta Lowery and GTP Investment Properties, LLC, will pay $335,000 to resolve allegations that Price sexually harassed multiple female tenants and discriminated in housing on the basis of race in violation of the federal Fair Housing Act.
    [Read More…]