Smithfield sued over inciting fear, work conditions

Smithfield Foods is being sued by an advocacy group over causing fear of a meat shortage during the COVID-19 pandemic for greater profit.

Food and Water Watch says Smithfield misrepresented to consumers that a countrywide meat shortage was imminent in April of 2020 after it closed its Sioux Falls plant due to COVID. The group says the meat processor also misrepresented working conditions in its plants with workers constantly in close proximity accelerating COVID’s spread.

Food and Water Watch says USDA data shows Smithfield sent record high exports to China the same month it warned of an eminent food shortage and that cold storage inventory was enough to keep grocery stores stocked for multiple months.

The civil case was filed last week in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

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