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Email Content: Poultry Industry News, Comments and more by Simon M. Shane

Tyson Reports on COVID-19 Testing at Noel, MO. Plant


Consistent with the corporate policy of transparency, Tyson Foods reported a total of 371 employees at the Noel, MO plant showing positive on COVID-19 antigen testing.  The company noted that from June 17th to June 19th, 291 cases were identified with 86 percent presenting as asymptomatic.


At the outset of the COVID-19 epidemic, Tyson Foods engage the services of Matrix Medical to conduct testing and to carry out worker education programs.  To date, the company has administered 40,000 tests representing one third of all U.S. employees.


Any worker yielding a positive test is quarantined on paid leave and must be retested before returning to work. Tyson Foods was an early adaptor of CDC guidelines including social distancing, barriers between workstations, and the wearing of PPE in addition to health screening before each shift.


Dr. Randall Williams, Director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services noted "we are pleased that Tyson was able to effectively use the box-in strategy by conducting facility wide testing of their team members".  He added "this approach will help protect the health of Tyson team members and also the community at large".  Results of testing by Tyson Foods are shared with local health authorities according to Tom Brower, Senior Vice President of Health and Safety for Tyson Foods who said that sharing information is imperative in addressing the pandemic because safety is not a point of competitive advantage.


Nathan McKay, Complex Manager of the Noel Facility stated, "our team members do essential work and their health and safety comes first".  He added "it is our job to protect our team members and by disclosing our results, we not only take the necessary precautions for our facility, but also provide the wider Noel community with the information it needs to stop the spread of the virus".

Copyright © 2020 Simon M. Shane