Zorba Delicacies faces COVID-19 cases

By Michelle Perrett

- Last updated on GMT

Zorba Delicacies staff are involved in rapid testing
Zorba Delicacies staff are involved in rapid testing

Related tags: coronavirus

Public Health Wales (PHW) has confirmed that ‘widespread’ and ‘rapid’ testing was taking place at dip maker Zorba Delicacies’ Ebbw Vale food processing plant after four confirmed cases of COVID-19 there.

PHW has not yet confirmed an official outbreak at the houmous factory, but investigations continue. 

Zorba Delicacies is the latest food manufacturer to be plagued by the coronavirus pandemic, which appears to have hit the meat sector particularly hard. 

The 2 Sisters chicken plant​ in Llangefni, Wales reopened earlier this month after more than 200 cases were confirmed there. 

And the number of confirmed cases at the Rowan Foods site​ has risen to 309. 

Investigations

Dr Giri Shankar, incident director for the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak response at PHW said of the Zorba Delicacies case: “Investigations are ongoing as to the possible cause of the incident, and no firm conclusions can be reached at this early stage. No outbreak has been declared.

“Close contacts of confirmed cases have been contacted through the Test, Trace, Protect process and provided with additional advice for themselves, household and other contacts.”

Last year Zorba recalled 17 houmous products from major retailers ​including Aldi, Morrisons, Lidl and Nando’s amid potential salmonella fears. 

The company confirmed that a batch of ingredients ​supplied by a third party was the cause of the recall.

Precautionary measure

Shankar said that as a precautionary measure, and to help with further understanding of situation within workplace settings, Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, in collaboration with the Gwent Regional Test, Trace, Protect team, would be carrying out the workforce testing and had the full cooperation of Zorba Delicacies. 

“As we move into the recovery phase of the coronavirus pandemic, we expect to see clusters in settings such as workplaces,” ​Shankar added. “We manage any cluster of coronavirus appropriately, including by providing advice around infection prevention and control, and by supporting contact tracing where required.”

In 2015, Zorba Delicacies invested £9M​ in a new factory creating 100 jobs. 

Meat factories in Wales have been heavily hit by the impact of coronavirus with clusters of cases affecting 2 Sisters Food Group, Rowan Foods and Kepak Mertyr.​ 

Related topics: COVID-19

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