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Victorian meat processors JBS Australia and Pacific Meat have identified cases of COVID-19 on site, with all staff at both locations being tested.

The Department of Health and Human Services Victoria reported the JBS Australia Brooklyn site and the Pacific Meat site in Thomastown were among the 127 new cases in the state recorded on Monday (6 July).

In a statement on Pacific Meat’s website, it said a single employee from the Lipton Drive site was identified to have the virus after testing positive on Saturday, 4 July, and was self-isolating.

“We have closed the site immediately and have been able to get every employee on the site tested on Sunday 5/7. This closure was voluntary and done as a precaution,” the statement said.

Pacific Meat’s Norwich Ave Thomastown site continue to operate “business as usual” the meat processor said.

At JBS Australia, one new case was also found, with the “department’s outbreak squad” visiting the facility to “ensure the appropriate public health actions are taken”.

Food & Drink Business has contacted JBS Australia for comment.

In May, a COVID-19 cluster was linked to Cedar Meats Abattoir in Melbourne, which has since restarted its operations as of 28 May.

Packaging News

Yesterday Victoria recorded the country’s worst day in the Covid-19 pandemic, reporting 15 deaths and 725 new cases. Victoria also went into a period of extraordinarily strict lockdown as the state government scrambles to get the outbreak under control, forcing many businesses to shut their doors.

Pact Group, Cleanaway Waste Management, and Asahi Beverages have formally entered a joint venture to build a $45m recycling plant in Albury/Wodonga. The companies say the facility will substantially increase the amount of PET produced in Australia from local waste.

The July/August edition of PKN Packaging News is out now. Whether you read it online or in print, it's packed with the latest news and insight for the packaging industry.