Denton councilman makes play for Sriracha plant

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by TODD UNGER

Bio | Email | Follow: @toddWFAA8

WFAA

Posted on October 30, 2013 at 6:56 PM

Updated Thursday, Oct 31 at 2:29 AM

DENTON –– All it took was a tweet and an open letter on a blog.

Before long, nearly every restaurant in town had heard of Councilman Kevin Roden's idea: Huy Fong Foods, the California-based hot sauce company that makes the popular Sriracha sauce, should relocate to Denton to avoid litigation.

"I think it's great," said Pierce Laughter, a manager at Viet Bites off North Elm Street.

Around noon on Wednesday, Denton City Councilman Kevin Roden tweeted a solicitation for the hot sauce giant to move some of it U.S. operations to Denton.

The move came after Huy Fong Foods has faced problems at a new facility in Irwindale, Calif. Neighbors there are upset because of a strong smell and odor coming from the plant, according to the Associated Press.

But in the tweet — and later in an open letter on his blog — Roden writes the company would be welcomed with open arms if it relocated to Denton.

"As the indie music capital of Texas and a city of 48,000 college students, Denton is home to myriads of Sriracha’s customer base.  We’ve got cheap land, shovel-ready industrial sites (far away from neighborhoods to avoid your current complaints), 40% wind power, competitive costs, and award-wining reliability from our city-owned electric company..." he wrote in part.

The city's Economic Development Office said it started looking into the proposal Wednesday afternoon after the idea took off on social media.

"It really started a grassroots movement," said Aimee Bissett, the city's economic development director. "We haven't reached out to them yet, but I think it would be great."

News 8 reached out to the company but has yet to hear back on Denton's proposal.  

E-mail tunger@wfaa.com

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