Official: German slaughter virus outbreak is unstable

Germany's agriculture minister says the slaughterhouse has been unstable and hundreds of workers have tested positive for COVID-19 and backed an official investigation into the outbreak

BERLIN - Germany's agriculture minister said Thursday that hundreds of workers at the Covid-19 have tested positive for the slaughterhouse situation and are backing an official investigation into the outbreak.

At least 657 people tested positive for the new coronavirus at the Tunis Group meatpacking plant in Rida-Wydenbrook, officials in the west of Goters said Wednesday.

“Hundreds of infections in one plant. Agriculture Minister Julia Kocher said in a statement: "These conditions are unfavorable. Officials in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia are right to launch an investigation into the origin of the plant's infection."

Following previous coronavirus groups at the abattoir, the German government has pledged to tighten the practice of employing subcontractors that often employ migrant workers and keep them in cramped housing. But some lawmakers have warned that jobs are at risk of going abroad.

Coronavirus outbreaks have also affected meatpacking plants in other countries, including the United States. The United Food and Commercial Workers Union recently said at least 44 slaughterhouses in the United States have died of the virus, and another 3,000 have tested positive.

Labor campaigners said the spread of one of Germany's largest slaughterhouses, which employs about 7,000, showed the need for change.

“It is no coincidence that the Tonys slaughterhouse becomes the next hot spot for coronavirus infection,” said Freddie Adajan, vice president of the NGG Union and representing workers in the food and beverage industry.

Adajan said workers in the subcontinent "face destructive working and living conditions."

"This sick system must end eventually," Adajan said. "The government's decision includes a prohibition on contract work, which needs to be fully implemented in the legislative process."

Tonies said the outbreak was tied to the recent travel of workers from Eastern Europe, especially after the borders were reopened.

But experts have questioned that the result of such a large outbreak - more cases than the entire country would normally report in a day - may be due to travel alone.

“Working conditions in slaughterhouses are not very conducive to the sanitation measures currently required,” said Isabella Eckrell, head of the Center for Viral Diseases at the University of Geneva.

"In my view, a large number of (infected) employees represent an unwanted 'super-spread event' in the company that has been going on for some time."

Company spokesman Andre Wilstad said the carcasses may also have a role, with temperatures ranging from 5 to 12 degrees Celsius (41 to 54 degrees Fahrenheit) in humid weather. Aerosols are formed and the virus spreads to the air. "

North Rhine-Westphalia Health Minister Carl-Joseph Luhmann said the spread of tennis was so intense that two-thirds of tests so far showed positive results.

"I'm a little worried about what will happen when we test the next 6,000."

The number of daily infections in Germany crossed 500 for the first time in a week on Thursday. Although the figure has not yet been included in the Givers case, it has seized about 100 infections reported from an apartment building in the German central city of Gటిttingen.

According to a count at the Johns Hopkins University, German COVID-19 deaths and 8,868 people died.

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