Smithfield Foods ends contract with PSSI

Published 6:08 pm Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Smithfield Foods’ local meatpacking plant has ended its contract with Packers Sanitation Services Inc., also known as PSSI Food Safety Solutions, resulting in the layoff of 85 PSSI employees.

The Virginia Employment Commission published a warn notice March 31 regarding the layoff, though according to Gina Swenson, PSSI’s vice president of marketing, it’s not a true layoff, as all 85 employees have been extended offers to transfer to other facilities.

The federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act requires companies with 100 or more full-time workers to send written notice of any layoff affecting 33% or more of the total workforce at a single site of employment.

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PSSI provides sanitation and food safety services for more than 450 food processing facilities in North America, including — until recently — Smithfield Foods. According to Jim Monroe, Smithfield’s vice president of corporate affairs, the contract for the meatpacking plant at 601 N. Church St. in town recently went through a competitive bidding process, and a new partner was selected.

“We appreciate that the incumbent is working with us as we transition to a new service provider,” Monroe said.