One, two, three strikes you’re out. That could be the case for Jerome, Idaho based Idaho Milk Products. The company has agreed to pay $170,000 in fines for violating federal water standards. This is the second time a federal entity has fined the company in five years.
The Environmental Protection Agency wrote, “From March 2009 to July 2012, the Jerome dairy producer pumped wastewater into the city’s sewer system that routinely failed to meet Clean Water Act standards for acidity,” in a press release Monday.
The EPA reported that the company exceeded the approved acidity levels 138 times in the three year period.
Back in 2012 Idaho Milk Products was fined over its failure to report use of nitric acid in 2009. Idaho Milk claimed they filed the correct paperwork 360 days late because of an “oversight”.
Idaho Milk Products created an "environmental coordinator" from within after start-up speed bumps. Monday the company said it hired the coordinator to "ensure compliance and initiate continuous process improvements throughout the production plant."
In a news release Kent Giddings, general manager of Idaho Milk Products said, “We take these matters seriously and moved quickly to address this issue so that we stay in compliance with all government and industry standards.”
The EPA also just reached a settlement with nearby Jerome Cheese Co., in July. Jerome Cheese paid $304,000 of what the EPA said could have been $100 million in penalties for instances of exceeding the allowable amounts of phosphorus ammonia and letting pollutants reach the Snake River.