Smithfield Foods is asking courts to intervene with a federal investigation into a COVID-19 outbreak at its Sioux Falls, S.D., facility. The outbreak caused the plant to close earlier this year.

According to USA Today, officials from OSHA had subpoenaed South Dakota health officials, looking for them to turn over test results, correspondence with Smithfield representatives and plant photos. The company in turn asked the U.S. District Court of South Dakota to quash OSHA’s subpoena. The company stated that OSHA’s investigation would damage how it and other meat companies worked with government agencies in their response to the pandemic.

“We believe the information sought from the state is both relevant and necessary to OSHA’s ongoing, administrative inspection of the Smithfield Sioux Falls plant,” U.S. Department of Labor attorney Jennifer A. Casey wrote in an email to Smithfield’s attorneys.

Source: USA Today