Canadian Manufacturing

Rapid COVID-19 vaccination critical for essential workers, including those in manufacturing

Due to phased immunization, and because it will take time to build immunity within the population, food, health, and consumer product manufacturers will continue to implement best practices to minimize COVID-19 transmission.

January 12, 2021  by CM Staff

MISSISSAUGA — New resources released on Jan. 12 by the Food, Health & Consumer Products of Canada will help employers understand the evolving public health guidance on vaccination as the sector continues to work to ensure prioritized distribution of COVID-19 vaccines for food, health, and consumer goods manufacturing workers.

Michael Graydon, Chief Executive Officer of FHCP, commented:

“Our sector’s frontline workers have secured Canada’s food and other essential supplies throughout the pandemic. FHCP’s vaccine resource document will ensure employers have the information they need to work in collaboration with the federal and provincial governments to ensure vaccines are rolled out as efficiently as possible, to build on effective COVID-19 prevention measures implemented thus far.

FHCP members are also keen to assist the government’s efforts to speed vaccine distribution and are exploring appropriate support measures, perhaps even using facilities as vaccine distribution centres.”

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FHCP’s vaccine resource document provides information on Canada’s vaccine planning, roll-out, and safety considerations. Canada’s National Advisory Committee on Immunization (NACI) defines food, health and consumer products manufacturing sector workers as part of the category of “essential workers” for vaccine prioritization.

Due to phased immunization, and because it will take time to build immunity within the population, food, health, and consumer product manufacturers will continue to implement best practices to minimize COVID-19 transmission. Best practices include:

  • Physical distancing (limiting close contact with others)
  • Personal and surface hygiene (ensure hands and objects are clean)
  • Physical environment (steps taken to reduce risk such as protective barriers and foot traffic flow patterns)
  • Appropriate use of PPE

FHCP anticipates the new vaccine resource document will be particularly helpful for the small businesses that make up 90 percent of Canada’s food processing businesses alone.

The food, health, and consumer product sector contributes more than $39.5 billion to Canada’s economy annually and directly supports more than 350,000 jobs. With establishments operating in every province, the sector is Canada’s largest manufacturing employer and the top employer in rural Canada.