Most Irish meat plant inspections in August unannounced

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All but one of the coronavirus-related health and safety inspections carried out at meat plants during the month of August were unannounced, breaking with a practice of prearranging most visits.

The Health and Safety Authority (HSA) said there were 26 meat plant inspections carried out last month, of which 25 were unannounced.

Up to the middle of August, only nine inspections of 39 carried out since lockdown measures started to be eased in May were unannounced.

The increased surveillance of meat plants last month came in response to a surge in Covid-19 infections at four meat factories that contributed to the lockdowns of Kildare, Laois and Offaly.

“In relation to meat processing plants, the authority has received a high level of co-operation from management, staff and contractors in plants inspected and has noted an overall responsiveness to guidance and advice issued both on-site and subsequently,” the HSA said.

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