Smithfield Foods temporarily closing Illinois plant after employees test positive for COVID-19

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SMITHFIELD, Va. (WAVY) — Smithfield Foods announced on Friday that the company will be closing the Monmouth facility located in Illinois until further notice.

The company said in a release that the closure will begin next week as a result of a “small portion” of its employees testing positive.

While the exact number of employees who tested positive is not specified, we know that nearly 1,700 people currently work there according to a statement released. Employees will be paid during the shutdown.

As of April 24, Smithfield Foods plants in North CarolinaSouth Dakota, Missouri, and Wisconsin have temporarily closed as a result of employees testing positive for the virus.

There are no reported confirmed cases at the local plant in Smithfield, Virginia.

Smithfield Foods also said that it is taking the necessary precautions to protect its team from the virus while in the workplace especially since establishments like this require close contact, making social distancing difficult.

Company officials said that personal protective equipment has been used throughout all its facilities as well as the implementation of barriers in break rooms and on production room floors.

According to officials, this particular plant makes about about 3% of pork supplies in the U.S.

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