FRESNO, Calif. — Federal investigators probing a slaughterhouse after an undercover video showed inhumane treatment of cows said Friday that there is no evidence that sick animals entered the food supply.
A spokesman for the US Department of Agriculture announced that a team of investigators at Central Valley Meat Co. in Hanford found that no food safety violations occurred, though an investigation into inhumane handling of animals continues.
The USDA closed the plant for a week in August after an undercover video shot by Compassion Over Killing showed downed animals being repeatedly kicked, shocked, shot, and pulled by the tails by workers trying to get them to stand. Executive director Erica Meier said she is unsure what to make of the USDA’s decision.
Outrage over cruelty shown in the video was swift as McDonalds Corp. and In-N-Out Burger cancelled purchasing agreements along with the federal government, which bought 21 million pounds of meat from the company last year for the national school lunch program and other nutrition programs.
Company officials have been working to implement corrective actions, including quarterly training for workers and more frequent audits. Video surveillance cameras were installed in the plant this week.
With the food safety investigation done, ‘‘we are resuming full operations and production immediately,’’ said the company in a statement.