Tyson Foods Inc. TSN, -4.25% said Wednesday that it has fired seven management employees at its Waterloo, Iowa, pork facility after an independent investigation into betting allegations at the plant.
“The behaviors exhibited by these individuals do not represent the Tyson core values, which is why we took immediate and appropriate action to get to the truth,” said Tyson Chief Executive Dean Banks in a statement.
“Now that the investigation has concluded, we are taking action based on the findings.”
According to the allegations, a manager at that facility “organized a cash buy-in, winner-take-all betting pool for supervisors and managers to wager on how many employees would test positive for COVID-19.”
When the allegations were revealed, Banks said those involved had been suspended without pay. The company also retained the law firm Covington & Burling LLP to conduct an investigation led by former Attorney General Eric Holder.
Tyson is facing wrongful death lawsuits tied to the company’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic. The company recorded $540 million in COVID-19-related expenses in fiscal 2020.
Of the 2,800 workers at the Waterloo plant, 1,000 were infected with COVID-19 and at least six died.
Banks and others went to the Waterloo facility on Wednesday to meet with workers and community leaders. A meeting was also held last month.
Tyson stock fell 4.2% on Wednesday, and has slumped 28.2% for the year to date.
The benchmark S&P 500 index SPX, +0.37% has gained 14.7% for 2020 so far.