Alberta provincial officials have declared a COVID-19 outbreak at Cargill’s meat further-processing plant in Calgary, with five cases of the coronavirus connected to the facility.
Provincial chief medical officer Dr. Deena Hinshaw tweeted Friday that “there are five cases linked to Cargill Case Ready Meats in #YYC.”
Provincial health officials “have visited the plant and are making sure necessary measures are in place to reduce transmission and protect workers,” she added, noting “widespread” testing is underway.
Cargill’s three case-ready plants in Canada — also including facilities at Guelph, Ont., and Chambly, Que. — provide packaged beef, pork, poultry, sausage and/or ground beef for retail sale, both in Canada and elsewhere.
The Calgary case-ready plant is separate from the company’s beef cattle slaughter and packing plant at High River, about 70 km south.
The High River plant underwent a two-week shutdown in late April as COVID-19 infected nearly half the plant’s work force of about 2,000 people, in an outbreak causing the deaths of two workers and the father of a plant worker.
The case-ready plant at Chambly, a South Shore suburb of Montreal, also temporarily shut down in May for all employees to be tested when its COVID case count hit 64. The case-ready plant at Guelph reported a few cases of COVID in May.
More details on the Calgary outbreak are available at the Canadian Cattlemen website. — Glacier FarmMedia Network