Smithfield Foods Details Ongoing COVID-19 Testing at Its Facilities
FeaturedJune 12, 2020
SMITHFIELD, Va., June 12, 2020—Smithfield Foods, Inc. today said that it is continuing to prioritize employee health and safety by providing free, on-demand COVID-19 testing to all its employees at its more than 40 U.S. facilities. The company offered the following details about the ongoing COVID-19 testing:
• Last month, Smithfield completed a testing phase in which private healthcare providers administered mass testing on a voluntary basis to all its employees.
• At the conclusion of that phase, beginning last month, the company hired four private healthcare providers, Matrix Medical Network, Eurofins Scientific, Mako Medical and Reditus Laboratories, to offer free COVID-19 testing on an ongoing basis. The COVID-19 testing is conducted by onsite nurses and allows employees, including those who are asymptomatic, to access a test at any time, as often as they would like.
• Employees can also continue to access free COVID-19 testing via their individual healthcare providers.
• Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 is immediately sent home with pay.
• All positive COVID-19 tests are reported to healthcare authorities.
• The company has designated a qualified workplace coordinator to answer any employee questions about the virus, among other COVID-19 related responsibilities.
• The company requires any employee who tests positive for COVID-19 to furnish a doctor’s note or negative test prior to returning to work.
• Symptomatic employees; employees who have been in close contact, as defined by the CDC, with a COVID-19 positive coworker; employees at a closed facility when it is reopened; and new hires are subject to mandatory testing.
The company’s COVID-19 processes, protocols and protective measures include the following, among many others, which are listed here, and remain mandatory and nonnegotiable conditions for it to operate:
• Explicitly instructing employees not to report to work if they are sick or exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms.
• Required that sick employees stay home and isolate according to CDC and OSHA guidelines.
• Paying employees, including any and all bonuses, when they are absent from work due to COVID-19.
• Offering a paid leave benefit for all employees age 60 or above and/or at higher risk for serious complications from COVID-19, as defined by CDC guidelines.
• Relaxed attendance policies to eliminate any punitive effect for missing work due to COVID-19.
About Smithfield Foods, Inc.
Headquartered in Smithfield, Va. since 1936, Smithfield Foods, Inc. is an American food company with agricultural roots and a global reach. Our 40,000 U.S. employees are dedicated to producing “Good food. Responsibly.®” and have made us one of the world’s leading vertically integrated protein companies. We have pioneered sustainability standards for more than two decades, including many industry firsts, such as our ambitious commitment to cut our carbon impact by 25 percent by 2025. We believe in the power of protein to end food insecurity and have donated hundreds of millions of food servings to our neighbors in need. Smithfield boasts a portfolio of high-quality iconic brands, such as Smithfield®, Eckrich® and Nathan’s Famous®, among many others. For more information, visit www.smithfieldfoods.com, and connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.
Executive Vice President, Corporate Affairs and Compliance
Smithfield Foods, Inc.