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Slinging tainted tomatoes

(article, Culinate staff)

Last week, the New York Times reported on a classic case of industrial corruption featuring bribery and tainted goods. The industry? Canned tomatoes. The full scandal has touched some 55 companies and created a whole new layer of meaning for the phrase "food safety." The chief culprit is SK Foods, one of the nation's largest tomato processors:

bq. Prosecutors say that for years, SK Foods shipped its customers millions of pounds of bulk tomato paste and purée that fell short of basic quality standards — with falsified documentation to mask the problems. Often that meant mold counts so high the sale should have been prohibited under federal law; at other times it involved breaching specifications in the sales contracts, such as acidity levels or the age of the product.