Brazilian meat packer JBS has closed a fourth US plant because of coronavirus, this time in the state of Wisconsin.
The temporary shutdown at the firm’s Green Bay facility was announced yesterday (26 April). Previously-closed beef processing plants in Souderton, Pennsylvania, and Greeley, Colorado have reopened, JBS said in a statement, adding its pork facility in Worthington, Minnesota, remains in shut-down mode.
JBS said it has more than 60 meat, poultry and prepared foods facilities in the US and has adopted all the recommended health and safety procedures and systems to protect employees and prevent the spread of the virus. In Wisconsin, Covid-19 has appeared in 66 of the 72 counties, including Brown County, home of the JBS Green Bay facility, which employs 1,200 people, the company added.
Shannon Grassl, the president of JBS’ beef operations in the US, said: “As an essential business providing necessary supplies and services for Wisconsin, we have endeavoured to maintain operations to ensure continued access to safe, affordable food. Given the continued spread of coronavirus in our community and among our workforce, we have decided to voluntarily close our Green Bay facility in an effort to help flatten the curve of infections in Brown County.
“We’ve been focused on doing everything we can to keep the virus out of our facility, but we believe a temporary closure is the most aggressive action we can take to help our community collectively slow the spread of Covid-19.”