Lawmaker wants to close Fresno meatpacking plant

AP News
Posted: Dec 10, 2009 5:34 PM

Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro wants to temporarily shut down a California beef processor that has recalled nearly 850,000 pounds of hamburger meat due to salmonella fears.

The Connecticut Democrat says Fresno-based Beef Packers Inc. should be closed until investigators probe conditions that prompted the recalls, the most recent of which happened last Friday.

The Fresno facility is one of more than a dozen plants that sold meat to the National School Lunch Program.

U.S. Department of Agriculture inspectors slapped the plant with an animal handling citation last year after finding some cattle there were electrically stunned and rendered unconscious so they could be pulled through an area inside the slaughterhouse. Some experts say that could increase the risk of bacteriological contamination.