One of the U.K.’s largest food producers shuts down a factory
A huge U.K. chicken plant has shut down in Anglesey, Wales, after 158 workers tested positive for coronavirus, according to the BBC. The 2 Sisters plant in Llangefni has now instructed all 560 staff to self-isolate for 14 days.
Meat plants and factories became coronavirus hotspots in the U.S. much sooner than in the U.K., with the cool, humid, tightly packed conditions making social distancing impossible and exacerbating transmission of the novel coronavirus. The workforce, largely made up of immigrant workers on precarious zero hour contracts mediated by agencies, are often unable to avoid work when unwell, further extending the problem.
While U.S. media attention often turns to worker welfare at meat plants and factories, U.K. meat discourse has, up to now, largely focussed on animal welfare and its ramifications for eating meat, or not. As more meat plants are forced to close — especially as lockdown measures ease — COVID-19 may force greater attention to be paid to the people who produce the meat, and the sacrifice of rights and protections that make it as cheap as the intensive farming that produces it.
And in other news...
- Brixton Market institution Nour Cash and Carry will have a new, larger unit after a campaign against landlord Hondo Enterprises fought its eviction from the community it has served for over 20 years.
- East London bakery stalwart Percy Ingle will close all 48 of its stores, after 66 years of iced buns, sausage rolls, and daily bread.
- The government is expected to announce the halving of social distancing measures today, as part of a bid to accelerate the reopening of restaurants, cafes, pubs, and bars.
- For now, takeaway is the only way, and some of London’s best cafes are adapting with flair.
- Brawn, one of the most uncompromisingly excellent restaurants in London, will reopen as a grocer and online retailer as it navigates the early stages of recovery.
- It’s one of many of the best places to eat in the city finding new ways to serve its customers.
- Weekly sales at Pret a Manger have fallen by 85 percent, as the maroon sandwich chain struggles with startling decline in footfall. [Big Hospitality]
- Good tweet: