4 out of 8 ‘significant’ Covid-19 clusters are in food processing factories

Four out of eight “significant” Covid-19 clusters in Ireland are in food processing factories, Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly has confirmed.

Speaking on Morning Ireland on RTÉ Radio 1 this morning (Wednesday, August 5), the minister said that “unfortunately, the virus is spreading at a very fast rate around the world”.

He confirmed that there are eight significant clusters of Covid-19 in the country currently, with “four in food processing factories, four in direct provision [centres] and numerous smaller clusters”.

Minister Donnelly added that the National Public Health Emergency Team (NPHET) is “unanimous and unambiguously of the view that things are very, very finely balanced and it would take very little” for cases to increase greatly throughout the country.

The rise in the number of community transmissions is also of major concern to officials, according to the minister.

Spike in meat plant Covid-19 cases ‘a stark reminder of threat’ – MII

AgriLand reported this evening, Wednesday, August 5, that Meat Industry Ireland (MII) has responded to the recent spike in confirmed cases of Covid-19 and virus clusters in meat processing plants, saying it is “a stark reminder of the persistent threat”.

The issue of Covid-19 in meat plants has re-entered the news in recent days and yesterday, Tuesday, August 4, it was revealed that the lamb processing line of the Kildare Chilling plant in Co. Kildare had suspended operations due to a cluster there.

In response to this, MII has said: “The confirmation of positive Covid-19 cases, which are the first we have seen in a number of weeks now, act as a stark reminder of the persistent threat of Covid-19 and the relentless effort and focus that has to be maintained to keep it [Covid-19] out of our plants and protect staff, while also keeping the supply chain in operation.

Protocols are robust and every possible measure is being deployed in processing facilities.

“Continued vigilance is key,” the MII statement added.