Feeding the nation in the time of Covid-19. How U.S. farmers and the food supply chain are responding to the pandemic
Farmers are used to dealing with uncertainty, forever at the mercy of the weather and fluctuating market prices. But nothing could have prepared them for the Covid-19 pandemic, which transformed life as we know it almost overnight. Consumers, accustomed to buying the food they want, when they want and where they want, were suddenly confronted with empty supermarket shelves as people stockpiled out of fear of running out. Paradoxically, on many farms the problem was too much rather than too little, with farmers forced to dump milk and plough vegetables back into their fields. It’s not that there wasn’t enough food, or too much, it’s that demand suddenly changed and the supply chain had to play catch-up. U.S. farmers and ranchers are being challenged like never before, but they continue to find ways to put food on our tables while protecting their own livelihoods.