Coronavirus outbreak at Cleckheaton meat factory Kober Ltd

An Asda-owned meatpacking factory in Cleckheaton has suffered a coronavirus outbreak.

Kober Ltd, based on an industrial estate in Hunsworth, supplies bacon to Asda stores.

Health secretary Matt Hancock revealed at Thursday evening’s coronavirus briefing that there had been a localised coronavirus outbreak in Kirklees.

In a statement, Kober Ltd and Asda said: “As soon as we became aware that some colleagues at our Kober site may have Covid-19, we responded swiftly and worked collaboratively with the local authority and Public Health England to test all colleagues.

“We have voluntarily closed the site to protect colleagues and prevent any further transmission. Colleagues who need to self-isolate will receive full pay and we aim to reopen the facility early next week. We’re grateful to Kirklees Council and Public Health England for their support through this process.”

Kirklees Council confirmed it had been made aware of a “number of positive cases” of coronavirus at a workplace in the district.

The council’s director of public health, Rachel Spencer-Henshall, said: “A key part of the NHS Test and Trace service is working closely with our partners, including Public Health England, to promptly identify Coronavirus cases and limit transmission.

“Working together on this case with Public Health England, the business and its staff has helped to prevent further infection and has possibly saved lives.

“I’d like to reassure everyone that as soon as we became aware of this issue, we acted quickly to work with the business and their staff to limit any further potential spread of COVID-19.

“This further highlights that it’s still absolutely crucial that we all continue to follow social distancing guidance, wash our hands regularly and seek testing if we develop symptoms.”

“And we now have the system in place to be able to spot them the best we can and then take that local action.”

Kober Ltd, in Hanging Wood Way, Cleckheaton, was bought by Asda in 2016. Kober and Forza AW Limited, in Normanton, have been the supermarket giant’s sole meat suppliers since 2011.

YorkshireLive – West Yorkshire News