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Coronavirus outbreak at Cranswick Country Foods factory

PUBLISHED: 17:38 15 October 2020

Cranswick Country Foods, which has had an outbreak of coronavirus among workers in its Watton base. Pic: EDP

Cranswick Country Foods, which has had an outbreak of coronavirus among workers in its Watton base. Pic: EDP

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A “small number” of workers at a Norfolk meat processing plant have contracted coronavirus.

A “small number” of workers at a Norfolk meat processing plant have contracted coronavirus.

The staff at Cranswick Country Food, in Brandon Road, Watton, are now isolating at home after testing positive for Covid, the firm confirmed.

Cranswick, which employs hundreds of staff on the site, declined to say exactly how many people were infected but confirmed it was “less than 10”.

All had been either asymptomatic or showing very mild symptoms, a spokesman said.

“We do have a very small number of colleagues who have tested positive for Covid,” he said.

“They worked in different areas of the factory, and the positive thing is that no one is seriously ill.

“There is no reason to believe it’s an issue at the site, but it appears to be community-generated and population-driven.”

He said there had been one case reported last week and more “over the last two days” and that Cranswick was working with local authorities on the issue.

He added there was no current plan to close the site as a result of the outbreak.

A Norfolk County Council spokeswoman said: “A small number of staff at the company have tested positive for Covid-19. We’re working with partners at Breckland Council to look into these cases and to explore any links or routes of transmission.

“As always, we would advise people to continue protecting themselves and others by washing their hands regularly, practising social distancing, and wearing face coverings as appropriate. If you develop symptoms, however mild, you should isolate with your household and get a test.”

Cranswick Country Foods, which also has a major poultry factory in Eye, Suffolk, reported a 20pc rise in sales back in August, attributed to the fact more people were eating at home during the Covid outbreak.

The firm is a supplier of fresh meat, particularly pork, as well as bacon, gammon, poultry and cooked meats.

Cranswick saw trade increase hugely last year, before Covid, due to exporting more pork to China because hundreds of millions of pigs had been wiped out by African swine fever.

The business has its headquarters in Hull and recently produced a new charcuterie snack under the Bodega brand.


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