Production at meat processing plants resumes after a cyberattack.



Production began to resume at nine U.S. beef factories on Wednesday after cyberattack the world’s largest meat processing plant forced them to close a day earlier.

Union officials said Wednesday that some factories are operating, but not yet at full capacity. JBS said Tuesday night that the “vast majority” of its factories will reopen the next day.

About 400 workers have returned to work at the JBS meat processing plant in Suderton, Pennsylvania, compared with about 1,500 who will work on a typical day, said Wendell Young IV, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1776, representing the workers. at the factory. JBS’s beef plant in Cactus, Texas has canceled many employees scheduled for one of its shifts on Wednesday, according to a Facebook post for workers.

Young added that the company told the union that the plant will be operating mostly as usual by Thursday, although the start time will be delayed by several hours.

JBS did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The attack raised concerns about the vulnerability of critical American businesses. Jen Psaki, a White House spokesman, on Wednesday urged companies to strengthen cybersecurity measures, saying “a number of these private sector entities need to protect themselves.”

Ms Psaki declined to say whether the US government plans to retaliate. “We are not ruling out any options in terms of how we can respond, but of course there is an internal policy review process to take that into account,” she said.

JBS told the Biden administration on Tuesday that it was a ransomware attack and that the ransom demand came from “a criminal organization that is likely based in Russia,” a White House official said Tuesday. Ms Psaki did not provide further details on Wednesday, but said the administration is in direct contact with the Russians and that President Biden will raise the issue of cyberattacks with Russian President Vladimir Putin when they meet in two weeks.

Thousands of workers in Australia, Canada and the US were affected as shifts were changed or canceled altogether on Monday and Tuesday. Some factories in the US were still not back to normal on Wednesday. In Australia, factory workers as well as pastures Local news outlets said they have not yet announced when the factories will reopen.

As analysts from the Daily Livestock Report said on Wednesday, prices could rise as a result of the cyberattack. Analysts wrote that the interruptions could lead to a reduction in the so-called spot supplies, which “will leave little available for small buyers.”

However, analysts said the attack is likely to be “only a small part of the picture,” as retail meat prices continue to rise throughout the summer.

The attack was the second to thwart a critical US business operation. Last month, a ransomware attack on Colonial pipeline, which transports gas to nearly half of the East Coast, has caused fuel shortages and panic buying.


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