42 Covid-19 cases confirmed at Co. Wexford meat plant

A House of Commons report has criticised the Irish and British governments for their action on the horsemeat scandal

Slaney Foods operating at a “significantly reduced capacity”

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26 January 2021 | 0

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Forty-two positive cases of Covid-19 have been confirmed at a meat processing plant in Co. Wexford, following screening of staff.

Bunclody-based Slaney Foods said yesterday evening that it is operating at a “significantly reduced capacity” following the outbreak, and that all close contacts of those affected are currently self-isolating.

The cases were detected after staff were tested on Friday.

“Staff safety and public health is our priority and Slaney Foods will continue to work with the HSE in relation to the matter,” the company said in a press statement.

The company added it has introduced “a range of industry-leading protection measures as part of an industry-wide initiative”.

These include limiting site access to essential personnel, temperature checks at the entry to the site, staggered break times, perspex partitions where appropriate, social distancing measures in canteens and all other communal spaces as well as detailed protocols for colleagues who display any symptoms.

“We are continually evolving and improving the measures to ensure safety at all our sites,” Slaney Foods added.

Wexford yesterday had 86 confirmed new cases of Covid-19, the third-highest number of cases of any county.

People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett said that the outbreak at Slaney Foods should be investigated “as a matter of urgency”.

When asked if any of the cases were associated with travel, a spokesperson for ABP, co-owners of the Bunclody plant, said they do not comment on specific details but said: “In line with national guidelines we have in place strict foreign travel protocols for all staff regardless of their nationality.

“Any staff member who has travelled abroad must undergo a 14-day mandatory quarantine before returning to work and during that time they must undergo two PCR Covid-19 tests at appropriate intervals,” the spokesperson added.

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