A food processing plant belonging to one of the biggest faux meat companies is riddled with bacteria and food safety violations.
Internal documents and photos from the Beyond Meat plant in metro Philadelphia paint a picture of dangerous conditions with possible repercussions for consumers.
Bloomberg obtained the evidence from plant whistleblowers, publishing the findings in a Monday report.
A food safety attorney interviewed by Bloomberg indicated that the conditions at the plant were seriously unhygienic.
“If neat and tidy is one and filthy is 10, I’d put this at an eight,” attorney Bill Marler said of the plant.
“Mold growth takes a while — that underscores a lack of cleanliness.”
Purported photos from the faux meat plant — a 45-minute drive on the Pennsylvania Turnpike from Philadelphia — show mold growing on walls, as well as soiled containers used in food preparation.
Internal plant documents also suggested that inorganic materials like wood, string and metal had been found inside Beyond Meat products engineered at the facility.
In spite of this, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture “found no instances of nonconformance with regulations,” hailing Beyond Meat’s food safety protocols in reports that followed March and September plant visits, according to Bloomberg.
Beyond Meat declined to comment when questioned on the documents and photos by Bloomberg.
The company produces plant-based products made to resemble hamburger patties, sausages, and other staple meats.
Economic prospects for the faux meat industry have taken a turn for the worse in 2022, with demand for the chemically engineered meat alternatives failing to materialize as investors anticipated.