Tyson Foods (TSN 0.05%) decided yesterday to distribute approximately $60 million in bonuses to truck drivers and other frontline workers who keep its food distribution running efficiently during the coronavirus outbreak. In all, 116,000 employees will receive a $500 bonus, though Tyson won't be cutting the checks until July.
Demand for packaged and processed foods is high right now as people stay at home to avoid COVID-19, stock up on supplies, and eat at their residences rather than going out to restaurants, most of which are closed for dine-in. Two weeks ago, Tyson changed part of their meat production over to retail packaging instead of restaurant cuts to help meet soaring purchases of staples.
Tyson has adapted its operations to the current crisis in several other ways. High-traffic areas at their facilities are subject to extra sanitizing efforts, and workers at the facilities have their temperatures checked daily.
The food processing company also "relaxed" its attendance policy so employees with coronavirus symptoms can stay home. It has waived co-pays for coronavirus testing and is temporarily providing full pay to workers who stay home because of COVID-19 or influenza cases.
Speaking about the upcoming bonuses to frontline workers, CEO Noel White remarked, "Our team members are leading the charge to continue providing food to the nation. The bonuses are another way we can say 'thank you' for their efforts."