23 Jan 2014

Gelatine plant stench may linger

8:30 pm on 23 January 2014

Residents disgusted by the smell from a Christchurch gelatine factory may face another three years of the stench while the company tries to remedy the problem.

The company, Gelita, has asked the Canterbury Regional Council for a three-year grace period during which it would not be fined for occasionally discharging offensive odours.

The company says the factory in the suburb of Woolston suffered significant damage during the earthquakes and needs the grace period so it can keep operating while working to control the smell.

Alisdair Cassels owns a new $20 million retail development called The Tannery across the road from the factory and said customers leave when the smell starts up.

"It's a smell of rotting flesh, it's not a nice smell. We've suffered a lot of business lost, particularly last year. This year hasn't been too bad but last year was quite bad, and the year before."

Mr Cassels said he has had to reduce some rents and is taking legal action against Gelita for loss of income.

Gelita says if its application for leniency is declined, it could be fined out of existence.