Maple Leaf Foods must be wondering when it will all stop. A second contamination of listeria has been found at the same processing plant as the first, which killed 20 people back in August and left dozens more ill.
Now the company is faced with the challenge of hanging on to the shaky bit of public confidence it has managed to regain since the late summer outbreak.
Maple Leaf has one thing in its favour this time. The plant has been reopened but products haven’t been distributed on the market yet, which means no one will fall ill this time. Still, the public forgave them for the first outbreak, but will they forgive them for (thus far) not being able to eliminate the deadly bacteria from its plant?
I have said before that I think Maple Leaf has managed the crisis very well so far. But this new development will require changes in their crisis management plan.
So you tell me: what would you do to handle this second outbreak? How would you keep the positive momentum going from Maple Leaf’s crisis communication efforts so far?[ad]