ST. PAUL (LEARFIELD) – Governor Tim Walz says he’s “deeply concerned” that dozens of COVID-19 illnesses have shut down Smithfield Foods’ Sioux Falls plant, a major processor of pork coming from Minnesota and other states.

The company announced plans to temporarily close it’s Sioux Falls plant for three days to step up it’s cleaning processes and add barriers to promote more social distancing. The union representing workers at the Sioux Falls plant said more than 120 employees of the plant have COVID-19.

“They are shut down because of what can happen if you don’t get the social distancing and don’t get things right,” said Walz. “You have a major manufacturing plant – in this case pork producing, food producing – is shut down because of this.”

Walz added that he’s not hearing of any disruption to that supply chain yet – but acknowledged that’s a deep concern.

He adds that he’s constantly talking to major manufacturers such as General Mills, Cargill and Land O’ Lakes.