How We're Taking Action.
Putting People First.
We are committed to keeping our team members safe and our food system strong during the COVID-19 pandemic. Continuing to provide wholesome, affordable, and nutritious food to our communities is vitally important, and the safety of our team remains our top concern. We are putting people first as we try to minimize the potential exposure and risk our team members face.
UPDATED: MAY 13, 2020
How we are handling employee travel:
- All non-essential business associated travel has been restricted.
- All non-essential intra-facility traffic has been restricted.
- We ask all employees to inform us of any upcoming travel plans.
- Any employee returning from vacation or travel is screened in accordance with CDC guidelines.
- empirical has implemented temperature taking of all individuals entering our facilities.
- All individuals entering the facility are screened in accordance to CDC recommendations.
- Daily tracking by location of the number of employees calling in sick, days out, symptoms, quarantined employees, and employees on vacation.
- All call-ins are reviewed on a daily basis by facility to assess trends.
Social Distancing in Plants:
- Employee Breaks
- Adjusting break times to reduce the number on break at any given time.
- Changing welfare area table configurations to allow for 6 feet of distance and installed plexiglass partitions.
- Meetings / Training
- Only essential training to ensure compliance with various regulations for continued operation.
- Smaller groups no greater than five individuals.
- When applicable, online / computer training.
- We have evaluated production areas and have taken steps to ensure employees, wherever possible, are positioned more than 6 feet apart and installed plexiglas partitions where feasible.
- All employees are required to wear company supplied face masks.
- Communicate education and awareness of COVID-19 via signage, email, texting and direct verbal messaging reminding employees of social distancing responsibilities, self-monitoring for symptoms and the practicing of good hygiene.
- Occupancy limits for all offices and conference rooms to allow social distancing to be executed in these spaces.
Sanitizing / Cleaning Procedures:
- Increased frequency of common areas including break rooms, restrooms and high touch areas such as handrails, counter tops, computer kiosks, time clocks, etc.
- All welfare areas are being fogged routinely.
- Foaming production surfaces, walls, and doors with EPA-registered chemical agents.
- Installation of additional hand sanitizer dispensers.
- Visitors are not allowed to enter any empirical facility (with the exception of established third party providers / contractors) until further notice.
- For established third parties / contractors, self-screening guidelines have been implemented. This includes asking about past travel as well as current health status.
- Amended sick, leave of absence and attendance policies to encourage employees to stay at home if they are not feeling well and accommodate those employees who are quarantined.
- Employees are paid during their quarantine period.
Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19:
- empirical has put in place a response protocol of separation and sanitizing based on CDC and NAMI (North American Meat Institute) established guidelines.