87K frozen turkeys destroyed in Texas explosion

Two dozen firefighters spent two days fighting the blaze that forced Greenberg Smoked Turkey Inc. to shut down for the rest of 2020


Associated Press

TYLER, Texas — A company in eastern Texas that sells about 200,000 smoked turkeys every holiday season was forced to shut down after a fire and at least two explosions destroyed part of the facility.

Greenberg Smoked Turkey Inc. in Tyler, Texas, will halt production for the rest of 2020 after a mechanical failure that started a fire caused a freezer holding 87,000 turkeys to explode, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Tyler, Texas firefighters respond to a fire and explosion at the freezer buildings at Greenberg Smoked Turkeys Inc., Friday, Nov. 6, 2020. The explosion destroyed 87,000 turkeys and forced the facility to shut down for the rest of 2020.
Tyler, Texas firefighters respond to a fire and explosion at the freezer buildings at Greenberg Smoked Turkeys Inc., Friday, Nov. 6, 2020. The explosion destroyed 87,000 turkeys and forced the facility to shut down for the rest of 2020. (Photo/Zak Wellerman, Tyler Morning Telegraph via AP)

A team of 24 firefighters took two days to put out the blaze and its aftermath, according to Tyler Fire Marshal Paul Findley. No one was hurt in the explosion.

The Greenberg family business launched in 1938. The spice mix that is rubbed on the bird before it smokes for at least 14 hours is a family secret.

Owner Sam Greenberg, the grandson of the founder by the same name, says the company will be rebuild and will be back to smoking turkeys in 2021.

Customers who already ordered a turkey will get a refund by Nov. 13, Greenberg said.

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