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Consumer Advocates Say El Super Markets Pose Hazards to Public Health

El Super Markets has a location at 5610 York Blvd. in Highland Park.

Patch file photo.
Patch file photo.

On Tuesday, consumer advocates and East Los Angeles community leaders called for a probe into what they are calling unsafe business practices that pose hazards to public health at El Super Markets.

The group—including members of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, the East L.A. Community Corp., Pueblo y Salud, Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education and Consumer Federation of California—claim a survey they conducted in the chain's Southern California stores showed dozens of dairy, meat, eggs and milk products for sale that were expired or past their due date, according to Mike Shimpock, a spokesman for UFCW 770, which represents retail workers in Los Angeles County.

A letter with the results of the survey was sent Tuesday to El Super's parent company, Bodega Latina Corp., and to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, according to Shimpock.

Maria Cabildo, president of the East L.A. Community Corp., said she was concerned for the health of East L.A. consumers.

"Selling food that is past its sell or use date is potentially unsafe and unethical," Cabildo said. "We have seen evidence that this may be a systemic problem with this grocery operator."

Cabildo also called on El Super to comply with basic health standards.

El Super did not immediately return requests for comment.

The supermarket chain has stores in California, Arizona and Nevada, including 14 locations in Los Angeles County. Paramount-based Bodega Latina Corp., part of Mexico's Grupo Chedraui, reported $1.2 billion in sales last year, according to Supermarket News.

—City News Service

Nimby pimp February 21, 2014 at 01:13 AM
Thank you for this information and for the useful comment.
Paul Martin February 21, 2014 at 03:34 AM
I am not going to make any judgement until the LA County Health Dept comes up with their findings. Why would a union be behind a survey like this? It seems a little fishy if you ask me. Besides, wouldn't most customers check the expiration date before purchasing items? I've seen expired items at other grocery stores in the area including Trader Joes and Fresh and Easy but that will not stop me from shopping there either.
Tina Gulotta-Miller February 21, 2014 at 02:10 PM
Here are the names, phone numbers and emails for the State of California District office for FSIS. We can ask for better services and quality in our markets by staying engaged to help businesses adhere to best practices in their industries. The communities deserve to have quality control over their food as it directly impacts our quality of life and raises the public's awareness regarding health standards and best business practices. Alameda, CA (District 05) States: Arizona, California, Nevada Dr. Yudhbir Sharma, DM (510) 769-5712 Yudhbir.Sharma@fsis.usda.gov Mr. Abdalla Amin, DDM (510) 769-5712 Abdalla.Amin@fsis.usda.gov Dr. Virginia Felix, DDM (510) 769-5712 Virginia.Felix@fsis.usda.gov Mr. Frank Gillis, DDM (510) 769-5712 Frank.Gillis@fsis.usda.gov 620 Central Avenue Building 2C Alameda, CA 94501 Phone: (510) 337-5000; Ext. 1 for DM or DDM Fax: (510) 337-5081 Emergency 24-Hour: 1-866-729-9307 Admin. Functions: Ms. Sukhdeep Sidhu (510) 769-5718
KingSlav February 25, 2014 at 01:03 PM
Unquestionably labor union meddling involved here.

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