meat processing

Meat processing facilities face unique disinfection challenges

New guide helps operators improve facility hygiene, recover from outbreaks
Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Following a series of SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks in worldwide meat processing plants, Diversey has released a new guide to help operators improve facility hygiene, mitigate the spread of the COVID-19-causing virus, and prevent fines, shutdowns, and labour shortages.

“Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfection of Meat Processing Facilities” examines why the industry faces an accelerated prevalence of infection. Operators, the paper suggests, may be infected outside of the workplace and then spread the virus while living or travelling to the facility with coworkers.

World Health Organization (WHO) and published government recommendations were taken into consideration in the creation of the guide, in addition to local recommendations. It also covers personal protective equipment (PPE) and chemical selection, the cleaning and disinfection of amenity and production areas, plus best practices for resetting a plant if an outbreak does occur.

“The global meat processing industry has recently been susceptible to outbreaks of SARS-CoV-2 infection,” said Hein Timmerman, global sector specialist at Diversey. “Consequently, inspection authorities are making it mandatory for meat processors to take extra measures to prevent the spread of the disease among their employees. Diversey envisages this new guide as a key resource for our customers, enabling them to quickly and efficiently intensify personal hygiene practices and employee screening, while also updating current SOPs and delivering continued control for water quality.”

The guide outlines six areas meat facility operators should take into consideration:

  1. Recommendations for the Meat Processing Industry: Topics include reducing employee flow, employee screening, social distancing, protective screening, ensuring proper PPE use, and creating a policy of respiratory etiquette.
  2. Suitable Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and Chemical Selection: Includes a guide to products which meet the criteria for virucidal efficacy in Canada and the U.S.
  3. Prevention of Transmission – Facility-wide Solutions: Provides links to hand hygiene signage downloads as well as information regarding entrance control systems.
  4. Prevention of Transmission – Cleaning and Disinfecting of Amenity Areas: Includes maps of high touch point areas in meat processing facilities, such as cafeterias/restaurants, kitchens, meeting rooms/offices, reception/lobby areas, and public washrooms and changing rooms.
  5. Prevention of Transmission – Cleaning and Disinfection in the Production Area: An in-depth look at notable aspects of cleaning and disinfection, from air sanitation to fogging.
  6. Reset Procedure – When a Case or Outbreak Has Occurred: A six-step process to follow before production resumes that should be followed in addition to a facility’s standard cleaning protocol.

North American and EMEA versions of the guide can be download for free on Diversey’s website.

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