Image: Facebook/CarrollsHam

It insists its employees will be paid as normal.

The Carroll Cuisine meat processing plant in Tullamore, Co. Offaly is to suspend operations to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the community.

It says the break will be taken over the days ahead while the results of covid-19 tests carried out on staff yesterday are being evaluated.

Tests completed last week show that 9 of the sites 330 employees tested positive for coronavirus.

Carroll Cuisine insists employees will continue to be paid as normal while operations are suspended.

Meat industry welcomes unannounced inspections.

Meanwhile Meat Industry Ireland says it fully welcomes unannounced inspections of processing plants to check for compliance with Covid 19 rules.

Concerns have been raised following outbreaks at four factories in Kildare, Laois and Offaly – with over 300 workers testing positive.

Union and industry representatives met earlier and agreed to set up a rapid testing system for workers.

They also discussed the issue of inspections – the Health and Safety Authority says 33 have been carried out at meat plants between the middle of May and end of July.