Beijing’s Latest Virus Outbreak Disrupts Tyson Foods and PepsiCo

Tribune Content Agency

PepsiCo Inc. and Tyson Foods are among the global consumer companies facing disruption as Beijing tries to contain a fresh outbreak of the coronavirus.

On Sunday, PepsiCo China said it shut a food plant in the Chinese capital after a case of the virus was confirmed earlier in the week. The company conducted tests on all employees at the plant and quarantined 480 workers, even though they all tested negative for the virus, one of its officials, Fan Zhimin, said at a local government briefing.

PepsiCo China later said in a WeChat post that none of its beverage plants in the country have reported any cases of the virus.

Beijing, a city of more than 21 million people, is the site of a recent jump in new cases in China after a two-month lull. Some residents are back under partial lockdown and transport links are disrupted, with more than 800 flights canceled on Friday.

Meanwhile, a cluster of infections at a Tyson Foods poultry slaughterhouse in the U.S. prompted China Customs to suspend imports from the plant, the government agency said Sunday. All products from the plant that are about to arrive in China or have arrived at the country’s ports will be seized by customs, according to a statement from the agency.

The Chinese government gave the registration code of the plant as P5842, which according to U.S. Department of Agriculture records is in Springdale, Arkansas. Tyson said Friday that 227 of 1,120 tests carried out on workers at the site were positive for the virus.

The decisions came days after a German abattoir halted pork exports to China after workers were found to be infected.


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