we believe

It’s safe to say
we’re all about safety.

For us, safety extends from our employees, to our customers, to the planet.

 

Staying Informed About Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Our Commitment to Employees

Foster Farms joins our nation in responding to the challenge of Coronavirus (COVID-19). We are committed to the health and welfare of our employees and work closely with community health leaders to ensure the safety of our workforce each day. We also recognize our responsibility to the millions of families that depend on our poultry products to meet their daily nutritional needs. We could not do this without the dedication and commitment of our employees, to whom we are grateful.

The Central Valley of California, where many Foster Farms facilities are located, has been especially hard-hit by COVID-19. In addition to extensive mitigations at our facilities, Foster Farms conducts aggressive asymptomatic testing of employees – that is employees who show no symptoms- for COVID-19, which is considered by the nation’s top health experts to be a critical step in combatting the spread of the virus. Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases and a leader on the White House’s coronavirus task force, has underscored the importance of asymptomatic testing in curtailing the spread of COVID-19.

Since September, Foster Farms has performed more than 70,000 COVID-19 tests to identify positive individuals and prevent spread within our workforce. We believe this is the most comprehensive business testing taking place in the state of California. Our ongoing strategic testing has resulted in a consistent average positivity level of 1%. Against a backdrop of a County positivity rate above 10%, the company’s testing helps protect thousands more employees and community members by isolating positive individuals and preventing additional cases, even amid local spikes.

Protecting Our Workforce

In consultation with local health departments and following CDC guidelines, Foster Farms has adopted a three-step multi-hurdle approach to controlling COVID-19:

1) Screening to prevent symptomatic employees from entering facilities, through wellness and temperature checks.

2) Adding preventative measures within our plants in alignment with CDC guidance and reviewed with county health departments. Plant mitigations include mandatory face coverings, adding partitions to workstations where social distancing opportunities are limited, daily USDA-reviewed plant sanitation and continuous sanitation of shared common spaces, staggering of worker breaks, and expansion of break areas. The company has reviewed ventilation at its processing facilities and is installing HEPA portable filters in common shared areas.

3) Continuous weekly testing of employees at all major processing facilities, to remove asymptomatic workers – those showing no signs of illness – curtailing potential COVID-19 spread. Our testing is graduated based on ongoing review of change in county prevalence levels and most recent test results, with the capability to rapidly expand from sample-based Surveillance testing to Aggressive twice-weekly testing of the entire plant workforce. We believe that identifying and removing asymptomatic workers through proactive testing is the surest way to further protect workers free of the virus. Currently, all major Foster Farms processing plants are following an Aggressive twice-weekly testing protocol for all employees. We believe this is one of the most comprehensive testing programs in California.

The company is working to secure COVID-19 vaccines for our workforce as an added protection.

COVID-19 represents an unprecedented challenge to all who live and work in California. Tempering the surge in COVID-19 will require active cooperation of government, public health authorities, business and local citizens. Foster Farms is committed to the ongoing protection of its workforce.

Responding to Communities In Need

COVID-19 has touched the very fabric of American life, and the economic consequences are being felt throughout the communities we serve. Foster Farms has partnered with local food banks on the West Coast and beyond, to help provide more than 2 million pounds to those in need. Foster Farms outreach is the continuation of a decade long commitment to fighting hunger and responding to communities in times of disaster and crisis.

We encourage consumers to stay informed about COVID-19 by visiting any of the CDC links below for the most accurate and up to date information. From all of us at Foster Farms, please be safe.

CDC Resources

 

Food Safety

For our employees at farms and facilities up and down the West Coast, Foster Farms maintains a comprehensive Food Safety program and is committed to leading the poultry industry. We were even recognized for our leadership in controlling salmonella to among the lowest levels in the industry by US Senator Dianne Feinstein, a champion of improved food safety.

Foster Farms is now working closely with the USDA, CDC, poultry industry, and retailers to share its learnings in controlling salmonella in the interest of creating a safer food-supply system nationwide.

Learn more about our Food Safety commitments.

Consumer Food Safety Education

When it comes to food safety, we’re all in this together. So we’ve funded innovative consumer research through the University of California Davis designed to better inform consumers about food safety. Read below for an overview.

Store fresh, raw chicken in its original unopened wrapper at 40°F or less, in the bottom, coldest part of the refrigerator. Always be sure to cook or freeze raw chicken by the “use by” or “freeze by” date on the label.

For longer storage, immediate freezing is recommended. To prevent freezer burn, wrap chicken in foil or other freezer wrap. Separate parts into individual meal-size portions before freezing, so you can later avoid defrosting more chicken than you need.

  • Can I freeze chicken in its original wrapper?  Yes, the original packaging is fine for freezing for up to two months. For longer freezing, over-wrap packages with foil, plastic wrap, freezer paper or plastic bags.
  • What’s the best method for thawing frozen chicken or turkey? The safest method is in the refrigerator. Allow approximately five hours per pound thawing time. For faster thawing, you can defrost using the microwave.
  • What’s the best method for thawing fully cooked frozen poultry products? The safest method is in the refrigerator. Allow approximately five hours per pound of thawing time. For faster thawing, you can defrost in your microwave following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Can I refreeze partially thawed raw chicken or turkey? For the best quality, we recommend that you finish thawing the poultry and cook it completely, then immediately freeze it if desired (whole poultry should be cut into small portions prior to freezing).

Read more about our commitments to Food Safety.

 

Fresh Water Conservation

We conduct a thorough wash-down each day prior to the start of operations to enhance food safety. To reduce this impact, we’ve installed a BNR (Biological Nutrient Reduction) system that saves 150 million gallons of fresh water per year. This is a unique, state-of-the-art system that shows our commitment to addressing important issues like water conservation in California.

Read more about our commitments to the Enviroment.

 

Energy Conservation

We want to keep all our chickens comfortable, but that doesn’t mean sacrificing the planet. We use energy-efficient heat exchangers in our heating and cooling loop for all our barns. We’re also lighted by all LEDs all the time, and we replace old motors with high-efficiency models whenever possible.

Discover more about our Sustainability commitments.

 

Zero Landfill

At Foster Farms, we have set ourselves a Zero Landfill Goal. We are currently tackling our use of plastic throughout the processing lifecycle. Our NO Styrofoam initiative for all products sold in the San Francisco Bay Area has gained a lot of attention from customers and consumers in other geographical regions as well.

Foster Farms is a member of the How2Recycle program making it easier for our consumers to recycle. On our packaging we use the How2Recycle label that provides clear guidance on how our packaging should be recycled. At Foster Farms, we are committed to sustainability and reducing packaging waste. More details about the program are available at How2Recyle.info.

Learn more about our commitments to minimize waste.