Tyson Foods announced that 371 employees at its chicken processing plant in extreme southwest Missouri have tested positive for coronavirus.
In a press release issued on Friday, the company reported that it tested 1,142 employees of the plant in Noel from June 17 to 19 and that 291 of them tested positive for COVID-19. According to Tyson, 249 of those 291 employees, representing 85%, were asymptomatic.
Tyson said 80 other Noel employees tested positive for COVID-19 in separate tests conducted by their health care providers or by the state Department of Health and Senior Services.
The announcement confirms suspicions that the large increase in reported coronavirus cases in McDonald County that began last weekend was the result of large-scale testing at the plant, the Springfield News-Leader newspaper reported.