On Sunday China’s General Administration of Customs announced that it would be suspending imported shipments of poultry from a Tyson Foods plant based in Springdale, Arkansas. The suspension is reportedly due to an outbreak of coronavirus cases at the facility.
On Friday Tyson Foods announced the results of COVID-19 testing conducted at its facilities in northwestern Arkansas (Benton and Washington counties): 3,748 employees were tested; 481 tested positive, and 95% were asymptomatic.
“The results across our Northwest Arkansas facilities, and the country more broadly, reflect how much is still unknown about this virus, which is why Tyson is committed to providing information to our local health officials and enhanced education to our team members,” said Tom Brower, senior vice president of health and safety for Tyson Foods stated in a company press release. “Through our inclusive approach to large-scale testing, we are finding that a very high level of team members who test positive do not show symptoms. Identifying asymptomatic cases helps the community, since other testing is often limited to people who feel unwell.”
Meanwhile, it has also been reported that officials in China want the inspection process of overseas shipments ramped up, as they suspect that COVID-19 could be present on imported frozen food products.
Over the weekend PepsiCo’s Beijing operations were suspended following confirmed coronavirus cases at its chips production facility.
Last week new cases of the coronavirus were reported in Beijing, leading to concerns of a resurgence of the virus. Some new cases have been linked to the Xinfadi Market, a wholesale food market.