NOEL, Mo. – Hundreds of Tyson Foods employees at a plant in Noel, Missouri tested positive for COVID-19.
Tyson Foods on Friday released the results of the COVID-19 tests at its plant in Noel. near the southwestern line of the state of Missouri.
According to a press release, more than 1,100 team members were screened for COVID-19 between June 17-19.
The test results determined that 291 people tested positive and 249 of those cases showed no symptoms before the test. Additionally, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services identified 80 cases from the local health care provider facility.
Tyson Foods released the following statement on Friday:
Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN) today announced facility-wide test results for COVID-19 at its poultry facility in Noel, Missouri, one of more than 40 locations in the US where the sprawling The company’s prevention and testing program for the coronavirus is helping to contain the risk of spread from the community.
Of the 1,142 team members who were evaluated on-site at the Noel facility from June 17 to 19, 291 tested positive, of whom 249, or more than 85%, showed no symptoms and would not have been identified otherwise . This is in addition to the 80 positive cases identified among people who work on the premises by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services or when seeking care through their own health care providers. Positive team members receive paid leave during the quarantine period and can return to work only when they meet the criteria established by CDC and Tyson.
Tyson believes that large-scale testing protects his team members, helps prevent the spread of COVID-19 in local communities, and helps maintain a reliable food supply chain. The company is also using sophisticated predictive tools to monitor areas of the country where critical zones could emerge.
To date, Tyson has conducted nearly 40,000 tests across the country, covering more than a third of the members of his team based in the United States, in one of the largest company-sponsored testing programs in the United States. Testing at the Noel facility was conducted in association with MATRIX MEDICAL, a leading medical clinical services company.
“We are pleased that Tyson has been able to effectively utilize the ‘boxed’ strategy by conducting cross-center testing of his Noel team members,” said Dr. Randall Williams, director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. “This approach will help protect the health of Tyson’s team members and also the community at large.”
“Our priority and focus has been the protection of our team members and their communities. That starts with large-scale testing, but our holistic approach goes much further, ”said Tom Brower, Tyson Foods Senior Vice President of Health and Safety. “We believe it is imperative that we share our experience to address this pandemic because security is not a point of competitive advantage. For example, we continue to explore additional improvements in personal protective equipment, improvements in airflow in our facilities, and improving health care options for our team members in the communities where we do business. “
Protective measures implemented at Tyson’s production facilities include symptom testing for all team members before each shift, providing mandatory protective face masks for all team members, as well as a range of social distancing measures, including physical barriers between workstations and break rooms. Tyson has also designated more than 500 team members as social distance monitors at all of its facilities and is working with team members to provide training and education, in multiple languages, on how best to follow CDC guidelines both at work and at home.
“Our team members do essential work, and their health and safety come first,” said Nathan McKay, Manager of the Tyson Complex in Noel. “It is our job to protect our team members, and by disclosing our results we not only take the necessary precautions for our facilities, but also provide the broader community of Noel with the information they need to stop the spread of the virus.”