Monday, February 16, 2009
Peanut Corporation of America Files Bankruptcy
Peanut Corporation of America, the company responsible for the recent salmonella outbreak across the country, filed for Chapter 7 Bankruptcy last Friday.
The bankruptcy filing capped a horrendous week for the company. Earlier in the week, the company closed a plant in Texas after health inspectors discovered dead rodents, rodent excrement, and bird feathers in a ventilation shaft. A Congressional hearing also discovered that Peanut Corporation of America owner and president Stewart Parnell had knowledge of salmonella contamination, yet still ordered employees to ship these products to food manufacturers.
A lawyer for the company stated that bankruptcy was just about the only option left to the corporation. The salmonella outbreak has crippled its operation to the point where they could not conduct business at all without bankruptcy and reorganization.
By filing bankruptcy, the company will also be protected from the many product liability and wrongful death lawsuits it would have faced from the hundreds of Americans who have suffered serious illness or death from their contaminated peanut products. It seems somewhat unfair that Peanut Corporation of America will not be held accountable for criminally negligent actions committed on the part of their management. Perhaps bankruptcy laws should be revised to prevent this from happening in the future.