ROSE HILL, N.C. -- Federal regulators have fined a North Carolina poultry processor for allowing underage young people to perform dangerous duties.
The U.S. Labor Department has cited House of Raeford for allowing minors at a Duplin County plant to clean or operate powered meat-processing equipment.
Regulators have fined the Rose Hill-based company about $12,000 for requiring two workers ages 16 and 17 to use an electric knife. Federal labor law prohibits workers younger than 18 from operating or cleaning powered meat-processing equipment.
House of Raeford spokesman David Witter says the problem stemmed from what he called an "administrative error" last year at the plant near Wallace. Witter says managers cooperated with Labor Department investigators.
He says the company has new policies to avoid similar problems.