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18 workers at Bernard Matthews turkey plant test positive for COVID-19

Written by on 29 September 2020

Eighteen workers at a Bernard Matthews turkey plant have tested positive for coronavirus.

The staff members are self-isolating and approximately 100 other workers at the Suffolk site have been tested, with most returning negative results.

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Food production has not been affected by the outbreak, which comes ahead of the busy Christmas period.

The processing facility – which is in Holton, near Halesworth – has had controls in place since March to reduce the spread of coronavirus, including regular temperature checks, staff working in bubbles, COVID marshals, masks and visors and social distancing.

Most of those who tested positive live in the Great Yarmouth and Lowestoft areas and the cases are believed to have originated in the community, Bernard Matthews said.

Suffolk County Council, Public Health England and Bernard Matthews are now trying to manage the situation.

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Stuart Keeble, Suffolk’s director of public health, said: “I’d like to reassure people that this is, at this stage, a relatively small number of cases and that the situation is being very carefully managed by all the partners working closely together.”

The outbreak has not affected food production
Image:
The outbreak has not affected food production

A spokesperson for Bernard Matthews said: “We are grateful for the help of all local agencies and we fully support their objectives to protect the local community.

“We believe these small number of cases were initiated in the community, but nevertheless we will continue to enforce our robust COVID measures as we enter into our busiest period of the year.”