The case of an LSG Sky Chefs employee testing positive for COVID-19 in Auckland, New Zealand, proved that the safeguards the company has put in place to protect the health and well-being of its employees have been effective. A comprehensive test of all LSG Sky Chefs employees, conducted mainly on site by a task force from the local health authority, showed that no other member of the workforce is infected, with all test results returned 100% negative. Consequently, customers who temporarily stopped their service as a precautionary measure will be supplied again as of Friday.
On February 14, 2021, the New Zealand health authorities contacted LSG Sky Chefs to inform them that one of their employees at their Auckland facility’s laundry area had tested positive for COVID-19. They also stated that this person last worked at the unit on February 5 and was not infectious at that time. The employee had been on holiday since that day. LSG Sky Chefs immediately began to fully cooperate with the authorities, prompting New Zealand’s Director General of Health, Dr. Ashley Bloomfield, to say during a press conference that LSG Sky Chefs “have been incredibly helpful right from the start” and that he was grateful for their “cooperation and support.”
As a pre-emptive measure, and as part of the company’s internal pandemic plan, LSG Sky Chefs closed the small laundry facility. All other employees working there (eight in total) were asked to get tested and self-isolate. However, all of them tested negative. Furthermore, an on-site audit conducted by the infection protection control department was very positive and declared the infection control processes LSG Sky Chefs had already implemented as safe.
“Of course, this day fills us all with great relief, but also with pride,” said General Manager Mauricio Novaes. “The negative test results reflect the fact that the safety and hygiene processes we have in place at the unit are effective, benefitting both our employees and customers. Of course, we always want to improve and, therefore, plan to introduce the government’s testing software within the next two weeks. In addition, we were informed today that our workforce would be vaccinated very soon. With that in mind, we thank the health authorities for working closely with us during this very challenging period and for their recommendations regarding the health of our workforce. This case has truly tested our safety processes, but I am pleased to have verified that they work as intended.”
LSG Sky Chefs’ well-trained staff adheres to the company’s strict hygiene and food safety regulations (SOPs), as well as to the national COVID regulations, such as thorough hand washing, wearing masks, gloves, aprons, hairnets, sleeve protection and social distancing. This is constantly monitored at all of their catering facilities worldwide. The company’s priority is the health and well-being of its employees, and is thankful for the close collaboration it maintains with its customers in all related matters. All staff members send get-well wishes to the sick employee and her family and hope to welcome their colleague back in good health soon.