Current Cattle Market Daily Headlines for December 2, 2020

by | Dec 2, 2020 | 0 comments

In new allegation, lawsuit says Tyson officials lied to interpreters about Covid-19 dangers in Waterloo plant

  • A federal lawsuit filed on behalf of the families of three Tyson workers who died from Covid-19 at Tyson’s Waterloo pork processing facility has been amended.
    • The latest complaint states that senior managers at the plant lied to interpreters about the scope of coronavirus dangers at the facility.
  • Gary Mickelson, Tyson’s Senior Director of Media Relations declined to comment on the new allegation and other claims in the amended lawsuit.
    • However, he did say that the company did all that they could in the spring to slow the spread of the virus at the Waterloo plant, which employs 2,800 workers.
  • The amended suit states that plant manager Tom Hart and human resources director James Hook told interpreters during an April meeting that the facility had “no confirmed cases.” They also said that the Black Hawk County Health Department employees “cleared” the plant for operation.
    • Despite these statements, employees had tested positive for the virus and the Black Hawk County health officials had not cleared the plant to operate. Instead, they were advocating closing the building.
      • In early May, Black Hawk County public health officials reported that 1,031 of the plant’s employees had tested positive for the virus.
    • The new complaint states that Tyson managers prohibited interpreters from discussing Covid-19, except to say that the virus wasn’t impacting the plant.
      • The complaint also states that Tyson removed numerous interpreters from the plant floor after the meeting with Hart and Hook in April.
    • Other allegations in the amended complaint include:
      • Tyson managers told USDA inspectors in April to not wear masks inside the plant because they were worried it would send the wrong message.
      • At least one production worker remained on the line after vomiting.
      • A supervisor told at least one production worker to stay on the line after testing positive for the virus.
    • These new allegations come just two weeks after Tyson suspended some Waterloo managers at the plant because of claims in a previous amended version of the lawsuit that they were betting on how many workers would test positive for the virus.


Brazil’s JBS concludes deal to buy Bunge’s margarine and mayonnaise business

  • On Monday, JBS SA completed its acquisition of the margarine and mayonnaise businesses from Bunge’s local unit.
    • Commodities trader and food processor Bunge agreed to sell its margarine and mayonnaise assets in Brazil to JBS’s subsidiary Seara Alimentos in December of last year.
  • The deal includes the purchase of three manufacturing facilities previously owned by Bunge.
    • Seara will pay Bunge $131.24 million for the assets.
  • The acquisition will improve JBS’ position in the margarine market in Brazil, as well as its distribution capabilities.
  • According to JBS, the deal should bring in 1.2 billion reais ($2.3 million) of additional annual revenue to the Seara division.


Boxed beef prices

  • Choice boxed beef: $243.34 (-0.34)
  • Select boxed beef: $224.12 (+1.69)


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From the Holcomb Tyson fire to COVID-19;
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