As many as 50 people at a JBS SA beef facility in Colorado’s Weld County tested positive, adding to more than 160 cases at a Cargill Inc. meat-packaging plant in Pennsylvania, union officials said on Friday. South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem on Friday reported 190 cases at a Smithfield Foods Inc. pork facility, the Associated Press said. The Cargill and Smithfield plants are being shuttered, while JBS said it will continue operations.
Workers are also starting to die. Two more deaths were reported by union officials on Friday, one at the Greeley, Colorado meat plant and one in Pennsylvania. Both those facilities are owned by JBS SA, the world’s top meat producer, which didn’t confirm the deaths.
“As our communities and our country collectively face the coronavirus challenge, JBS USA has had team members impacted by COVID-19,” the American unit of the Brazilian meatpacker said in an emailed statement. “We are offering support to those team members and their families. Out of respect for the families, we are not releasing further information.”