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Chilliwack poultry plant ordered closed amid COVID-19 outbreak

Fraser Health has ordered Fraser Valley Specialty Poultry to remain closed as it investigates an outbreak of COVID-19 at the facility. Fraser Valley Special Poultry Facebook

Fraser Health has ordered a poultry processing plant in Chilliwack to remain closed as officials investigate an outbreak of COVID-19 at the facility.

Fraser Valley Specialty Poultry was one of two new poultry facilities where the disease was confirmed this week. Two other facilities in Vancouver and Coquitlam were identified last month.

READ MORE: COVID-19 outbreak at B.C. poultry plant shows it’s ‘irresponsible’ to work sick: B.C. premier

“The closure order is in place until Fraser Valley Specialty Poultry can demonstrate that they meet the parameters of the order, which includes addressing deficiencies at the site,” Fraser Health in a media release on Friday, adding that all staff have been tested for the virus.

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Earlier this week, the company said one worker had tested positive on April 28 and had been in isolation at home with minor symptoms.

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The other facility where a worker was identified to have COVID-19 this week, Sofina Foods in Port Coquitlam, remains open as the investigation goes on.

READ MORE: B.C. reports 4 new COVID-19 deaths as cases at poultry plants climb

“All symptomatic employees have been tested,” the health authority said. “The site has been inspected … and we are working with the facility to update their COVID-19 mitigation strategies.”

In their daily update on Friday, health officials confirmed 52 cases of the illness at Superior Poultry in Coquitlam and 35 cases at United Poultry in East Vancouver, after outbreaks were identified at both last month. Both facilities remain closed.

Officials have said staff at United Poultry had been coming to work sick for fear of losing income.

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