Small Bites: Foodwire

Salmonella victim sues

According to a press release from PR Wire and court documents obtained via Food Safety News, a lawsuit has been filed against Smiling Hara LLC, a local tempeh maker. Earlier this year, Salmonella-tainted tempeh from the company sickened at least 89 people in several states, including North Carolina.

The lawsuit is filed jointly by attorneys of Asheville-based law firm Roberts and Stevens as well as Marler Clark, a food-safety law firm that has obtained over $600 million in settlements involving food-borne illnesses since the 1993 Jack in the Box Salmonella outbreak. The plaintiff, Mary Ann Hurtado, is a Jacksonville, Fla., woman who was hospitalized after contracting a Salmonella paratyphi B infection. Maryland-based Tempeh Online, who provided Salmonella-tainted starter culture to Smiling Hara, is also a defendant.

According to the complaint, Hurtado was on vacation with her husband in Asheville when she consumed contaminated tempeh on March 19 at the Green Sage Restaurant. To read the full release, visit

A sweeter industry

French Broad Chocolates shared some news that's sure to thrill all of you Charlie Buckets out there. On Friday, June 29, the local chocolatier goes industrial with the opening of its factory and tasting room.

“French Broad Chocolates is thrilled to announce the grand opening of their latest chocolate venture, French Broad Chocolates Factory & Tasting Room,” says a recent FBC release. “The event … will feature free tours, tastes and a ribbon cutting by the Chamber of Commerce.”

Stop by the new facility at 21 Buxton Ave. between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. for the all-day unveiling and snacks from Roots Hummus, Annie’s Bakery and a special Chocolate Milk Stout brewed especially for the event by Green Man Brewing. Chances are there will be some chocolate too.

(For a bit more background on FBCL and its new venture, check out our Dec. 7, 2011 story, “They’ve Got the Golden Ticket,” at, or visit

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