The COVID-19 situation continues to evolve rapidly, and it remains top of mind for our employees. We know that in times like these, our retailers, consumers and communities depend on us for something critically important: the food in their homes.
Protecting Our Team
Our approach to this situation starts with the well-being and safety of our teams and their families. We have a task force that meets daily to assess the situation and take action to protect our employees, while meeting the need of the consumers who are counting on us to help them put food on their tables.
Earlier this month, we restricted non-essential domestic business travel and participation in large external events, such as trade shows and other group meetings. Additionally, we prohibited business travel to any country listed on the CDC website as a level 2 or 3 health risk, and placed 14-day quarantines on anyone who had traveled to any of those countries for personal reasons.
We are requiring all office-based employees and contractors who can work remotely to do so until further notice at all of our office locations. Our goal is to reduce the number of people in office environments to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in our communities.
We also recognize that working remotely is not possible for some of our employees. For those teams, we are continuing to put strong measures in place to maintain the health environment of our plants and distribution centers. We are implementing protocols to identify potential exposure and are following the CDC’s guidance on quarantines. We also have enhanced cleaning procedures in place. We have instituted a no visitors policy, and we are suspending plant tours and closing onsite stores to the public. We also are introducing health screenings for everyone entering our facilities.
We are also implementing new policies to help employees who may be out of work due to caregiving or health-related issues. This includes the suspension of our attendance policy for hourly employees and mitigation plans to bridge income if necessary.
During this critical time, we are focused on supporting our employees and their families.
Supporting Our Communities
We have a longtime commitment to supporting our hometown communities, and that commitment is critical in times of urgent need. To make the most immediate impact, we are donating $1 million in cash and food to food banks in the communities where we operate. In addition to funding, we will dedicate production runs in our plants to assist local food banks until the pandemic subsides.