General Mills is offering corporate employees the opportunity to work at its manufacturing plants amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a statement, the company said healthy corporate employees will be temporarily offered the chance to help in manufacturing facilities and support them in a variety of ways. 

“Our company’s purpose is to make food the world loves. But the unique circumstances of today call on General Mills to make food the world needs,” said Jeff Harmening, chairman and CEO of General Mills. “Our most important objectives are the continued health and safety of our employees and our ongoing ability to serve our consumers around the world. We see it as imperative that we help ensure a steady and reliable food supply for people and pets.”

The company announced the move along with other actions it’s taking to support employees and communities in response to the coronavirus. 

Additional benefits for plant employees

They also are offering enhanced benefits for plant employees, including:. 

  • A daily bonus provided to production-essential plant employees who are working on-site. This will be in effect for a minimum of four weeks and will continue to be evaluated as the situation evolves.

  • Employees will receive two weeks of paid leave under conditions including voluntary or mandated quarantine, school closure for a child, medical risk, and suspended work as a result of COVID-19.

  • In several locations, General Mills will provide child care consultations with employees to address child care concerns, including flexible work schedules.

Charitable gifts

In addition, General Mills is donating $5 million in charitable grants to support food access in its key global markets and support for its manufacturing communities around the world

These gifts include the Company’s previous  philanthropic grants spanning Asia, Europe, Australia, Latin America and North America to increase food bank capacity in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and supplement the $20 million in cash given by General Mills last year and more than $40 million worth of food product donations to food bank partners to help ensure food security across global communities.

“As a company, we have the values, insights and partners to positively impact the lives of millions of people worldwide during this unprecedented time as the world navigates the COVID-19 pandemic,” says Mary Jane Melendez, president of the General Mills Foundation. “These grants will help expand food access and lend added support for many of our communities around the world.”

Employee engagement:

General Mills employees who participate in the Company’s charitable gift matching program have an additional $500 in matching foundation funds, for a total of $1,500 this year. 

In addition, employees created an internal movement to inspire the company’s 35,000 employees around the globe to take small, local, safe actions to help others during the pandemic. 

General Mills also launched an internal group, “We’re In This Together” as a space to support and serve one another while adhering to social distancing and stay-at-home guidelines.

General Mills owns a number of snack brands, including Nature Valley, Fiber One, Chex and Bugles.