Jumping Through Hoops and Working From Home

Oct. 27, 2020

Perdue rigs up a way to protect workers.

Earlier this month I toured the Perdue Foods processing facility in Milford, Del. It was part of our coverage of Perdue as Processor of the Year, which will be our December cover story.

Of course I’ll describe my tour in full in that article, but I can’t help spilling a little detail right now.

Meat and poultry plants, as we all know, have been hit hardest by the pandemic, mostly because they require workers to stand virtually shoulder to shoulder on the processing line. For now this is unavoidable, if the companies want to keep their lines moving at viable speeds.

Some companies have installed barriers perpendicular to the line, giving each worker his or her own little workspace. But this is problematic. Solid plastic is hard to install and reconfigure, while flexible plastic is hard to clean.

A Perdue engineer hit on a unique solution: Wire hoops spread with ordinary garbage bags, which can be changed at every shift (or whenever it’s needed).

Seeing this, I was impressed. But I was also grateful to have a job I can do from home, where I have solid walls for protection.

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