We are incorporated with one of the largest food companies in the world, and, aware of our responsibility amidst the new coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19), we have intensified courses of action to ensure the health and safety of all people involved in our operational context, and their families as well.
We are part of a vivid, long and complex chain. In this regard, producing and distributing food is even more essential right now. We believe that ensuring safe working conditions for our personnel and other members of our production chain is part of our commitment of standing by the population and the public authorities, taking the necessary actions to keep our activities running and to guarantee food supply despite the unprecedented challenges imposed on all of us.
Based on protocols established by the authorities of the countries where we operate and the recommendations of renowned specialists, including experts in infectious diseases, we have developed operational continuity plans intended to maintain the supply levels to make sure food is available for thousands of households in Brazil and around the globe.
We also have the support of a renowned consulting firm specializing in risk management, which allows us to contact companies from other countries, such as China and Italy, to apply the best practices for food plants.
Check out the company’s donations:
- We believe that this is the moment for all companies to practice solidarity, in line with the unprecedented situation in which we are living, of high impact for everyone.
- In this sense, to contribute to efforts to combat the effects of this adverse scenario, we announces the donation of BRL 50 million worth of food, medical supplies and support to research and social development funds, to contribute to the efforts made to fight the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The donations are earmarked for hospitals, social assistance organizations and health professionals in the states and cities where we have has operations.
- In Brazil, the initiative initially covers about 60 hospitals in 50 cities, in 9 states. For the hospitals alone, including field hospitals, donations are expected to benefit more than 15,000 people/day, with nearly 2.5 million meals served for the next three months.
- Moreover, the company is to donate medical supplies, such as tests and thermometers, personal protective equipment, such as plastic cloaks, disposable caps and gowns, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, ventilators and other items that may be required. The materials will be primarily earmarked for health institutions based in the states and cities where our production plants, distribution centers and corporate offices are located.
- Additionally, during this period of uncertainty, our mother company BRF undertakes to maintain all jobs throughout the months of April and May and carry out only the career-related procedures that are normal in the regular course of its operations. It is worth noting that BRF is hiring more than 2,000 people, including its own employees and contractors, to maintain production and supply and replace employees at higher risk, who were preventively instructed to stay home.
- In order to support and provide further convenience to employees that are still working in the field, plants, Distribution Centers, out on the streets and at client premises, starting this week, SHB will provide a weekly credit in SHB goods or meal cards to help them and their families to have easier access to food.
- Our mother company BRF continues to operate its entire chain, by taking daily actions to ensure safety, health and sustainability to all people involved in its operational context, such as the creation of a new channel for answering questions, provision of PPE, temperature meters and tests for COVID-19, and others.
- We will do what we can to protect people, families and the population so that we can overcome the consequences of Covid-19 as quickly as possible.
Check out the courses of action taken:
- Dr. SHB, a free-of-charge medical guidance phone service available 24×7 for all workers, company employees, family members and third parties working in the company’s premises, and integrated partners, who can get advice from the health team.
- Intensification of a company wide campaign to raise awareness about hygiene habits and prevention of respiratory diseases with health and safety guidelines established according to the World Health Organization, Brazil’s Ministry of Health and renowned infectologists.
- Advice on the symptoms of the new coronavirus (fever, runny nose, sore throat and cough). For employees based in one of the units equipped with an outpatient clinic, as a preventive measure, SHB advises them to go to that clinic to get medical advice. If no outpatient clinic is available or out of working hours, Dr. SHB should be contacted for directions.
- Information from specialized professionals, including in the field of infectious diseases, for our employees, integrated producers and partners on prevention and safety precautions, including: General prevention tips for employees and their families; Prevention tips for the sales team; Safety tips for the operations team; Protocol to be followed by those living with people at higher risk; Entering and leaving homes.
- Early supply of the influenza vaccination.
- Leave granted to personnel aged 60 or more and to pregnant women.
- Remote work regime for administrative offices, sales branches and administrative teams based in the Distribution Centers and for administrative employees working in the operations (Industry and Farming), in addition to interns and apprentices.
- Early vacation for those facing logistics issues with children while the schools are locked down.
- Suspension of national and international travel and isolation of 14 days for those who have recently returned from abroad.
- Postponement of all training and events, except for legally required and mandatory training, as well as restriction of employee participation in events with large crowds of people.
- Further guidance given to sales reps to make sure they wear all necessary PPE, with increased hand hygiene, use of alcohol-based hand sanitizer, and staying 2 meters away from clients. We have also stressed the importance of contacting our remote medical service, Dr. SHB.
- Restricted visitor access to all manufacturing plants and Distribution Centers.
- Taking the body temperature of employees at the entrance to their units.
- Establishment of local committees to execute and monitor initiatives and definition of specific courses of action at each site.
- Provision of alcohol-based hand sanitizer and/or alternative as-effective products at property entrances, restrooms and areas with large flows of people, and application of disinfectant on the hands of employees and contractors entering and exiting the plants.
- Intensified disinfection of communal areas: changing rooms and cafeterias, personnel vehicles, machinery, equipment, facilities, walls, floors, handles and handrails.
- Greater spacing between tables in the cafeteria to reduce the contact of people.
- In places with restricted public transport, restructured personnel transport arrangements to make sure the chartered vehicles may run at 50% of capacity to reduce contact as much as possible. Cleanup at the beginning and end of the service.
- Implementation of the following courses of action in the short term at all units: checking the temperature of employees at property entrances, controlling queues to avoid crowds at entrances, restaurants, changing rooms and transport facilities. At restaurants, increased spaces between tables, alternation of team schedules, delivery of meals/lunch boxes to areas where it is possible to reduce the flow of people, and a new process of serving meals, excluding the buffet structures. Employee charter vehicles will also run at 50% capacity to minimize contact along the journey.
- Whenever a case of the disease is confirmed in the cities where a unit is based, adoption a protocol of active search for the potential contamination of its population of employees and family members in order to mitigate the exposure of the units to the virus.
- A prevention group that monitors all suspected cases involving employees, maintaining them away from the operations until the diagnosis of coronavirus is completely ruled out.
- In situations where there is confirmation of cases in one of our units, immediate removal of the employee and provision of medical support to them and their family. In addition to that, all employees that had contact with the infected person will be communicated, maintained away and closely watched. We will do a thorough cleanup of the unit to mitigate any risk to other employees, and will intensify all appropriate preventive measures.
- Adoption of new procedures to protect the safety of drivers, including: those coming from abroad should wear masks, limited access to communal areas to reduce the risk of infection, provision of ready meals, assistance by the medical team if the driver has any symptoms, and liaising with the truck companies to handle suspicious cases. Hygiene tips, such as vehicle cleaning, especially the steering wheel, handles, door panels, gearbox, radio and glove box. Liaising with truck companies to make sure the drivers have hygiene kits with alcohol-based hand sanitizer for proper prevention.
- Intensified communication with integrated producers and extension of the 24×7 medical advice channel. Further hygiene advice in and out of the workplace, including correct hand cleaning, non-sharing of personal objects, farming vehicle cleaning (mainly the steering wheel, handles, door panels, gearbox, radio and glove box), minimum distance of one meter between people, and others.
- Implementation of several actions through our Institute. We will donate food to hospitals and healthcare professionals and support all the communities where we operate.
- We are maintaining our operations without any significant changes and have a contingency plan to guarantee supply and meet the population’s demand for food in Brazil and worldwide.