A fire broke out this evening (Monday) at the Strauss-Elite candy factory in Nof HaGalil, which was recently closed due to the discovery of salmonella.
Six firefighters are on the scene, searching for people trapped in the building.
The commander of the firefighting forces at the scene said: "At 9:17 PM, we received a report at the 102 North hotline about a fire in the Strauss factory area in Nof HaGalil. When we arrived at the scene, we detected a fire in the factory's command room, carried out extinguishing and smoke release activity and brought the incident under control."
The Health Ministry yesterday published the findings of the sanitary audit it conducted at the Strauss plant, following the finding of salmonella traces in the products and the huge recall announced by the company. The ministry notes that "the audit found significant deficiencies in the company's procedures and conduct."
Among other things, the audit revealed that in recent months maintenance work has been carried out at the plant in parallel with the continuation of the chocolate production processes at the plant without taking into account the potential risks that may affect the production process and quality control of the plant.
In addition, during the audit, the plant informed the ministry's representatives that several weeks earlier there had been an intrusion of pigeons into the plant's production site and an exterminator had been ordered to deal with them. The Health Ministry noted that despite the introduction of the exterminator, the factory was required to conduct comprehensive tests to see if the penetration of pigeons affected the safety of the product.
It also emerged from the audit that the professional quality control team at the plant has been replaced in the past year and that the position of the plant's food safety manager is temporarily vacant.