MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — As issues with the food supply chain continue amid COVID-19 pandemic-related closures, a meat processing plant in Worthington has been forced to euthanize approximately 3,000 pigs on Wednesday.
This information comes from the Minnesota Pork Producers Association, according to WCCO’s Christiane Cordero.READ MORE: South Dakota's Kristi Noem Unveils Proposal To Ban Nearly All Abortions, Mimicking Texas Law
The livestock at the JBS processing plant were being sent back to farmers for them to dispose of, the association said. JBS makes up four percent of the country’s pork supply.
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Just got tough info from the MN Pork Producers Association. JBS’s Worthington plant euthanized ~3,000 pigs TODAY and sent them back to farmers to dispose. He hopes the number goes up so fewer farmers have to kill pigs themselves. Plant closed eight days ago. #wcco
— Christiane Cordero (@ChristianeWCCO) April 29, 2020
The plant closed eight days ago due to the number of COVID-19 cases that had been detected in workers there. As of Wednesday, the Minnesota Department of Health had confirmed 239 cases of COVID-19 in workers at the JBS plant.
However, President Trump signed an executive order to make meat processing plants critical infrastructure. Therefore they would have to stay open or reopen despite COVID-19 outbreaks at several facilities across the Midwest, including Tyson and Smithfield.MORE NEWS: Ryan Hartman Carries Wild Over Blackhawks 5-1
The union representing JBS’s more than 2,000 workers is asking for clear safety standards, access to PPE, daily testing and federal inspections. The union president will also be in Worthington on Wednesday alongside Gov. Tim Walz and other state leaders to express its perspective.