Maple Leaf Foods says 23 employees at their meat processing plant in Brandon have tested positive for COVID-19, but are playing down any danger.

The meat processing plant continues to remain open as both the company and provincial health officials maintain there is no evidence of the virus spreading within the plant — but the situation has some livestock producers watching closely.

General manager of the Manitoba Pork Council, Andrew Dickson, says some producers are worried about a potential shutdown at the plant— which is what the union representing the plant workers have been calling for.

The Manitoba Pork Council GM says there are around 2,000 people who work in that plant, and with the uptick in COVID cases in Brandon, producers are “very concerned that the community can get on top of this disease, so the workforce can continue to show up and process the pigs as they show up to the plant.”

Dickson says there are some built-in measures for pork producers to fall back on in the event of a disruption at the plant, but explains “after 3 or 4 days, we would be in serious trouble on the farm with too many pigs on our hands.”