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EPA Fines Jelly Belly $200,000 for Air Violations

Release Date: 12/26/2002
Contact Information: Leo Kay, Press Office, 415/947-4306

Facility Allegedly Failed to Comply with New Source Review Program

SAN FRANCISCO The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fined the Jelly Belly Candy Company $200,000 on Dec. 20 to settle alleged air permiting violations at its Fairfield, Calif. facility in the mid nineties.

The EPA is citing Jelly Belly for failing to apply for a New Source Review permit under the Clean Air Act when it expanded operations from 1994 through 1997. The Jelly Belly company uses flavorings and ethanol-containing products that emit volatile organic compounds, or VOCs, which are a precursor to ozone formation.

"This penalty balances the seriousness of Jelly Belly's violations along with its good faith efforts to correct them," said Jack Broadbent, director of the EPA's Air Division in San Francisco. "This case provides a a great example of how the New Source Review program allows facilities to expand while ensuring air emissions are controlled."

The EPA became involved in the case after learning of the permit problems from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District. As a result of a 1999 permit belatedly obtained from the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, the facility has reduced its VOC emissions by approximately 80 percent by installing a catalytic thermal oxidizer. The improvements have reduced VOC emissions by as much as 55 tons per year.

The New Source Review program requires new plants and exisiting facilities making major modifications to obtain a permit before construction. Regulatory agencies will issue permits only if the new plant or modification includes pollution control measures that incorporates the best technology available.

"We want to make sure that all sources of pollution comply with state and federal regulations that are designed to ensure cleaner air for all of us," Broadbent said.