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UPDATE 1-Brazil's Marfrig, labor prosecutors agree more protection for workers amid pandemic

(adds detail on the testing routine, other measures)

SAO PAULO, June 1 (Reuters) - Meatpacker Marfrig Global Foods has signed a settlement with labor prosecutors in Brazil to improve protections for workers amid outbreaks of COVID-19 cases in food plants, labor prosecutors said in a statement on Monday.

Marfrig, which is majority owner of National Beef Co. LLC in the United States, did not have an immediate comment on the prosecutors' announcement.

Marfrig's settlement, the prosecutors said, includes routine testing of workers for the novel coronavirus, which causes the COVID-19 respiratory illness, and it imposes a mandatory 1.5 meters (5 feet) in physical distancing between workers at the company's 12 plants in Brazil.

The testing routine Marfrig has agreed to may involve so-called rapid serological testing of workers and tests that use the reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction molecular method, known as RT-PCR, for employees working "in shared environments," the prosecutors said.

In Brazil, the company employs 17,000 workers, the prosecutors said.

Marfrig must also immediately remove "symptomatic workers" from the plants until testing is conducted, for a minimum period of 14 days, as foreseen in official health protocols. (Reporting by Ana Mano; Editing by Aurora Ellis)

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