February 3, 2021
Tyson Foods sued for allegedly misleading shareholders about COVID-19 protocols
Major United States meat and poultry processor Tyson Foods was sued for allegedly defrauding shareholders about the company's COVID-19 protocols at its meat plants, Reuters reported.
The lawsuit was filed in Brooklyn federal court seeking unspecified damages for Tyson shareholders between March 13 to December 15, 2020. It was filed by Mingxue Guo who resides in Canada, and seeks class-action status.
The lawsuit follows a letter from Scott Stringer, New York City Comptroller on December 15 that requested the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to investigate Tyson Foods' Tyson's health and safety disclosures to investors. The disclosures include the US$229 billion New York City Retirement Systems.
Tyson Foods' share price was 2.2% down on December 15, and dropped 8.5% over five trading days after Stringer said the company misrepresented its COVID-19 pandemic response.
Gary Mickelson, a spokesman for Tyson Foods, said the company has spent more than US$500 million on worker safety, which includes COVID-10 tests on thousands of workers weekly.
In Stringer's letter, he cited reports that Tyson Foods' had more than three times as many COVID-19 cases (11,087 as of December 3) and twice as many deaths compared to other meatpacking companies.
As of December 14, Tyson Foods has about 139,000 workers.
The case is Guo v Tyson Foods Inc et al, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of New York, No. 21-00552. The lawsuit names Dean Banks, Tyson Foods' chief executive, Noel White, his predecessor and current vice chairman, and Stewart Glendinning, chief financial officer as the other defendants.