Cargill’s Chambly, Que., processing facility is set to close later this week in an effort to stem a COVID-19 outbreak that has already seen over 60 employees test positive for the virus.
With more than 550 employees, the positive cases represent about 13 per cent of employees at the plant. According to the union that represents workers, more than 170 employees are isolating because they have been in contact with positive cases.
The Chambly plant is a further processing facility, processing beef, pork, chicken, a range of sausages, and ground meat.
Cargill’s High River, Alta., plant has been at the centre of Alberta’s largest COVID-19 outbreak, and closed temporarily. The plant has since re-opened and is working towards getting back to full capacity.
Other processing facilities across Canada have also reduced shifts or closed temporarily, and some have re-opened. Beef processor JBS at Brooks, Alta., has reduced capacity while dealing with an outbreak. Maple Leaf foods has had several cases of COVID-19 at pork and poultry processors, requiring temporary shut downs, that are now resolved. Sofina Foods announced last week it had two positive cases in Ontario, one at a further processing poultry facility in Mississauga and the other at a pork facility in Burlington, but the company says it’s continuing at full capacity.