A Longford abattoir worker sustained burns to both legs from the knees down after falling into a pre-wash basket filled with 82-degree water.
JBS Australia Pty Ltd pleaded guilty to failure to comply with health and safety duty Category 2 and duty to consult workers when the company appeared before Magistrate Simon Brown on Friday.
A Category 2 offence is defined by the Work Health and Safety Act 2012 as a failure to comply with a health and safety duty that exposes a person to risk of death, serious injury or illness.
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In November 2016 a Longford abattoir employee was using a tripe cooker and associated plant to pre-wash, load and cook tripe.
The process required the employee to put pieces of tripe in a pre-wash basket that was raised to tip tripe into the cooker.
Pieces of tripe would become stuck in the pre-wash basket's holes after the process changed from using bleach to hot water, making it necessary for employees to climb on to the edge of the basket and push the tripe into the cooker manually.
The abattoir worker slipped while trying to push the tripe into the cooker and landed in a tub filled with 82-degree water.
He received second and third degree burns to both legs from the knees down, including both his feet.
The offences the company pleaded guilty to carry a maximum total of fines valued at $1.6 million.
The company has pleaded not guilty to reckless conduct Category 1, which is the most serious breach because it refers to a duty holder recklessly exposing a person to risk of death or serious injury.
Whether the company was reckless in providing a safe workplace for its employees would be the key issue of the hearing to be held in November, Mr Brown was told.
Defence lawyer Steven Russell told the court it was not a case of being negligent or careless, recklessness needed to be a deliberate action.
Mr Russell said JBS pleaded not guilty because its actions did not amount to the charge of recklessness.
Court documents allege the company was reckless without reasonable excuse because it knew there was a problem with the tripe work system about six months before the incident.
"There was no risk assessment of a change in process from the use of bleach to wash the tripe to hot water; and knowing that there was a problem with the tripe sticking in the basket during the process of it transferring ... [and] did nothing to address the issue," court documents read.
A hearing will be held in the Launceston Magistrates Court from November 11-12, with prosecution expected to call nine witnesses.
Mr Brown ordered prosecution file written submissions outlining their argument for the recklessness charges within 45 days from June 7.
Mr Russell was given 60 days to file submissions for his defence.