Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

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Addie
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Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#1

Post by Addie »

H/T Andy
AndyinPA wrote: Fri Apr 03, 2020 10:58 am https://finance.yahoo.com/news/u-dairy- ... 45480.html
CHICAGO (Reuters) - Dairy farmer Jason Leedle felt his stomach churn when he got the call on Tuesday evening.

"We need you to start dumping your milk," said his contact from Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), the largest U.S. dairy cooperative.

Despite strong demand for basic foods like dairy products amid the coronavirus pandemic, the milk supply chain has seen a host of disruptions that are preventing dairy farmers from getting their products to market.

Mass closures of restaurants and schools have forced a sudden shift from those wholesale food-service markets to retail grocery stores, creating logistical and packaging nightmares for plants processing milk, butter and cheese. Trucking companies that haul dairy products are scrambling to get enough drivers as some who fear the virus have stopped working. And sales to major dairy export markets have dried up as the food-service sector largely shuts down globally.
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AndyinPA
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#2

Post by AndyinPA »

Thanks. I wasn't really sure where to put it. Starting a new thread is a good idea.
"To argue with a person who has renounced the use of reason is like administering medicine to the dead." -- Thomas Paine
Addie
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#3

Post by Addie »

An important topic, like this one.
AndyinPA wrote: Fri Apr 03, 2020 11:22 am Thanks. I wasn't really sure where to put it. Starting a new thread is a good idea.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
Addie
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#4

Post by Addie »

Reuters
Explainer: How the coronavirus crisis is affecting food supply

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - The coronavirus pandemic has disrupted global food supplies and is causing labour shortages in agriculture worldwide.

ARE WE FACING FOOD SHORTAGES?

Panic buying by shoppers cleared supermarket shelves of staples such as pasta and flour as populations worldwide prepared for lockdowns.

Meat and dairy producers as well as fruit and vegetable farmers struggled to shift supplies from restaurants to grocery stores, creating the perception of shortages for consumers.

Retailers and authorities say there are no underlying shortages and supplies of most products have been or will be replenished. Bakery and pasta firms in Europe and North America have increased production.

Food firms say panic purchasing is subsiding as households have stocked up and are adjusting to lockdown routines.

The logistics to get food from the field to the plate, however, are being increasingly affected and point to longer-term problems.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
Addie
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#5

Post by Addie »

New York Times OpEd - Shub Debgupta
Will the Coronavirus Threaten Our Food?

The supply chain has plenty of vulnerabilities.


Two terminals for the Port of Houston were shut down for a day this month after an employee tested positive for coronavirus, and Pennsylvania briefly closed most of its truck stops and service areas to slow the spread of the virus, threatening to also slow the distribution of food and other goods. Some meat packagers around the country were at three-fourths capacity because of illness.

In these and other small ways, the coronavirus has begun affecting the nation’s food supply chains, raising the potential that as the virus spreads, it will become harder to get food into stores from both American producers and ones abroad.

So far, the worst of the problems in the United States have been temporarily empty shelves at some stores. But the consulting company Fitch Solutions says that it sees “risks at all levels of the supply chain, from production to trade” that could lead to a “re-acceleration in food price inflation globally.” The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization says it expects disruptions in food supply in April and May.

How bad could it get in the United States?
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
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AndyinPA
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#6

Post by AndyinPA »

How bad?

With the crew at the top, very bad.
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Addie
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#7

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CNN: Jeff Bezos is donating $100 million to American food banks

New York (CNN Business) Jeff Bezos is donating $100 million to US food banks to help them feed a growing number of out-of-work Americans who are losing their jobs during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The Amazon (AMZN) CEO donated to Feeding America, a Chicago-based nonprofit with more than 200 food banks across the United States.

Bezos posted to Instagram a photo of a food bank, captioning it, "Even in ordinary times, food insecurity in American households is an important problem, and unfortunately Covid-19 is amplifying that stress." He noted that restaurants are closed, and many churches that provide free meals are closed too, because of social distancing mandates.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
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Wintermute
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#8

Post by Wintermute »

This is not food supply and shortage but my nephew in the reserves has just been activated and due to report tomorrow. My wife's employer has received three letters about employees being activated. I have no idea what this means.
???????????????
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neonzx
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#9

Post by neonzx »

Wintermute wrote: Fri Apr 03, 2020 8:11 pm This is not food supply and shortage but my nephew in the reserves has just been activated and due to report tomorrow. My wife's employer has received three letters about employees being activated. I have no idea what this means.
Trump signed an EO last week.
https://www.militarytimes.com/news/pent ... ronavirus/
The Pentagon is reviewing how many National Guard, Reserve and Individual Ready Reserve troops to call up in the fight against coronavirus in response to President Donald Trump’s executive order Friday.

Trump ordered Defense Secretary Mark Esper to call up a yet-to-be-determined number of ready reserve components to help in the country’s response to the fast-spreading pandemic.

“This will allow us to mobilize medical disaster emergency response personnel to help wage our battle against the virus,” Trump said in a Friday evening press conference. “We have a lot of people, retirees, great military people, they're coming back in.”
Addie
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#10

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Rand Corp blog
Forgotten on the Frontlines of the Food Supply Chain

In the COVID-19 pandemic, we're all coming to recognize a new class of essential first responders: those who keep the supply chains going.

In the food supply, farmworkers are these first responders. The federal government officially declared them to be part of the “critical infrastructure workforce” with a “special responsibility to maintain [a] normal work schedule.” Guest workers, who come from other countries to harvest fruits and vegetables, have been declared exempt from travel restrictions. In California, farmworkers are exempt from government orders to shelter-in-place and other measures to stop the spread of the virus. The same will likely be true in Florida.

The working and living conditions of farmworkers make practicing social distancing, self-isolation, or quarantine impossible. These workers generally live in unimaginably crowded conditions, 10 to 12 people in single-wide trailers, 5 or 6 in one-room cinderblock bunkhouses, or in encampments scattered around agricultural areas such as Napa Valley. There is no room where an infected worker could self-isolate.

Once one occupant is infected, there is nothing to stop the spread of the virus to his or her housemates. They are dry tinder in a viral wildfire's path.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#11

Post by Kendra »

Still no ice cream shortages :bag:

I have noticed, despite the extremely light traffic in the Seattle area, there are lots of trucks flying up and down the highway.
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#12

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CNN: Food supply worries farmers in US as coronavirus disrupts their work ...

The coronavirus pandemic is posing a threat to their livelihoods, as it is for many others across the globe. But unlike some shelf-stable goods producers, farmers have very little flexibility. They're on a strict planting and harvesting schedule and cannot ramp up or decrease production at will.

"A peach [that] is good today is not good tomorrow. That's how quick things ripen," Chalmers Carr told CNN Business. Carr owns and operates Titan Farms in Ridge Spring, South Carolina, where he grows peaches on around 6,200 acres, in addition to bell peppers and broccoli.

For blueberries and strawberries, he said, "if you leave them on the bush or the vine one extra day, they're virtually worthless." Even more forgiving crops, like bell peppers, have a short harvesting window of two to five days, Carr said.

April and May are critical planting and harvesting times for many US farmers. They need skilled laborers to work their fields, and a reliable supply chain to deliver their goods. And they don't have any time to waste.

If farmers can't find enough workers or if their farming practices are disrupted because of the pandemic, Americans could have less or pricier food this summer. And because international farmers and their supply chains face similar problems, we could receive fewer food imports, potentially limiting supply and driving up prices.
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Lani
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#13

Post by Lani »

We have a number of pig farmers who rely on restaurant food scraps for pig slop. Now there is almost no scrap since most restaurants are closed. Those still open for pickup or delivery have very little scrap. There's a project underway for people to be able to give their scraps to the pig farmers, but I haven't heard much about how that will be done. The scraps can't be more than 2 days old and need to be collected in large amounts.

Farmer's markets have reopened, sort of. There are roadside stalls, one or two farmers depending on how big the open space is. one person at a time can approach the stalls. No touching the fruit & veggies! Point out what you want, pay, and the farmer hands you the produce in a bag. Or bring your own bag for the person to fill for you.

Rough time for all of our farmers.
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#14

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Seattle Times: ‘Essential’ but unwanted: Coronavirus reveals another American double standard

Maybe nowhere has the onset of the pandemic spotlighted the hypocritical realities of modern American life more clearly than in the farm fields of Washington.

Farmworkers, many of them undocumented and for decades relegated to live in the shadows, suddenly have been classified, by the federal Department of Homeland Security, as “essential critical infrastructure workers” in the fight against the disease.

Many migrant workers are now being given letters — papers, if you will — that grant them special license to violate stay-at-home orders so they can freely go to work to pick vegetables and fruit.

“The fact that there is that cognitive recognition that we have to allow these individuals to travel to and from work because they are critical — that’s the complete opposite of what they’ve heard for nearly their entire lives,” a Northwest dairy farmer told The New York Times.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#15

Post by Addie »

NPR: Food Shortages? Nope, Too Much Food In The Wrong Places
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#16

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Green Bay Press Gazette
As dairy crisis deepens, farmers are warned that milk dumping could harm the environment

The dismal outlook for Wisconsin dairy farmers has worsened as they’re being warned that milk prices will continue falling, and more milk dumping could be necessary, if the federal government doesn’t start buying dairy products to offset COVID-19’s effect on the economy.

Rapidly changing conditions have taken a toll on processors and farmers alike as the market for cheese, butter and other products has been decimated by the near collapse of the food-service industry.

On Friday, cooperatives were telling members to cut milk production through culling cows or other means because processing plants had nowhere for the milk to go.

“It’s just unreal. If you had told me six months ago this was the scenario I would have said you’ve been watching too many horror films. But it’s just been a cascading effect,” said Paul Bauer, CEO of Ellsworth Cooperative Creamery in Ellsworth and a board member of the state Department of Agriculture Trade and Consumer Protection since 2017.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
Addie
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#17

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HuffPo
As U.S. Food Lines Grow, Chef Jose Andres Warns The 'Worst Is Yet To Come' ...

Celebrity chef José Andrés founded the nonprofit World Central Ktichen ten years ago to serve people at hurricane sites, in floods and earthquakes. Now the organization is mobilizing to respond to the U.S. coronavirus crisis with food for shut-ins, meals for health-care workers and stranded cruise ship passengers, preparing “grab-and-go” boxed meals in several cities, and by setting up food centers in some abandoned restaurants.

The help comes as hunger grows with the exploding ranks of unemployed in the pandemic. Evoking images from the Great Depression, long lines of people in cars and on foot have been filmed in Pittsburgh, Chicago, New York City, Dallas, Fayetteville in Arkansas, and in the shadow of President Donald Trump’s now closed “winter White House” at Mar-a-Lago.

Andres is all about food in a crisis. Starvation is already burgeoning, largely out of sight, he wrote last month in a New York Times op ed.

He believes one path to a better society is federal money to pay the unemployed to feed the unemployed, based on the publics works projects of the Depression. “If our leaders step up now with federal aid, food can be the solution — supporting millions of jobs while also feeding millions of people in desperate need,” he urged.
"The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for." - Barbara Kingsolver
Jeffrey
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#18

Post by Jeffrey »

Our governor ordered everything shut down for Good Friday, Saturday and Easter Sunday. This 200 IQ move has led to insane lines at grocery stores.

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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#19

Post by Volkonski »

Canada, U.S. farms face crop losses due to foreign worker delays

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-heal ... ce=twitter
Mandatory coronavirus quarantines of seasonal foreign workers in Canada could hurt that country’s fruit and vegetable output this year, and travel problems related to the pandemic could also leave U.S. farmers with fewer workers than usual.

Foreign labor is critical to farm production in both countries, where domestic workers shun the hard physical labor and low pay.

In Canada, where farms rely on 60,000 temporary foreign workers, their arrivals are delayed by initial border restrictions and grounded flights. Once they arrive, the federal government requires them to be isolated for 14 days with pay, unable to work.

In the United States, nearly 250,000 foreign guest workers, mostly from Mexico, help harvest fruit and vegetables each year. The State Department is processing H-2A visas for farm workers with reduced staffing, though some companies are still having a hard time getting workers in on time.
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#20

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Addie wrote: Mon Apr 06, 2020 11:18 am HuffPo
As U.S. Food Lines Grow, Chef Jose Andres Warns The 'Worst Is Yet To Come' ...

:snippity:

He believes one path to a better society is federal money to pay the unemployed to feed the unemployed, based on the publics works projects of the Depression. “If our leaders step up now with federal aid, food can be the solution — supporting millions of jobs while also feeding millions of people in desperate need,” he urged.
How dare he suggest such commie methods to a successful billionaire :!:

:twisted:

#MAGA :sarcasm:
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#21

Post by RoadScholar »

His answer to such a suggestion?

“Let them eat cake.”
The bitterest truth is healthier than the sweetest lie.
X3
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#22

Post by Volkonski »

Side effects: Fuel demand crash shuts U.S. ethanol plants, meatpackers lack refrigerant

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-heal ... ce=twitter
A slew of U.S. ethanol plants have shut down as fuel demand has collapsed during the coronavirus outbreak, and meatpackers have been hit by a worrying side-effect: less carbon dioxide is now available to chill beef, poultry and pork.

“We’re headed for a train wreck in terms of the CO2 market,” said Geoff Cooper, president of the Renewable Fuels Association industry group. The RFA said 29 of the 45 U.S. ethanol plants that sell carbon dioxide, or CO2, have idled or cut rates. The U.S. ethanol sector is the top supplier of commercial carbon dioxide to the food industry, accounting for around 40% of the market, according to the American Farm Bureau Federation.

That has put the U.S. meat industry on high-alert. It uses carbon dioxide as a refrigerant and preservative for meat, and also uses the gas to stun animals before slaughter.

The CO2 crunch is the latest supply chain disruption threatening the food industry as it struggles to keep workers on the job during the coronavirus outbreak while meeting rising demand at grocery stores.
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TexasFilly
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#23

Post by TexasFilly »

Gee, if only we had a Defense Production Act that would force those ethanol plants, or at least more of them, to stay open to ensure the safety of the food supply. If only Congress had passed $2.2T billion in funding so part of that could be used to make sure those plants aren't operating at a loss. If only we had someone who could make decisions to keep Americans safer during a pandemic.
I love the poorly educated!!!

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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#24

Post by Volkonski »

TexasFilly wrote: Tue Apr 07, 2020 5:32 pm Gee, if only we had a Defense Production Act that would force those ethanol plants, or at least more of them, to stay open to ensure the safety of the food supply. If only Congress had passed $2.2T billion in funding so part of that could be used to make sure those plants aren't operating at a loss. If only we had someone who could make decisions to keep Americans safer during a pandemic.
Trouble is that reduced gasoline production means less ethanol is needed now. Once the storage tanks are full of ethanol the plants have to shut down. In our Just-in-Time industrial supply system there isn't very much storage capacity.
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TexasFilly
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Re: Coronavirus: Food Supply & Shortages

#25

Post by TexasFilly »

Ok, so you move the product out of the tanks to free up capacity? Or you move in additional tanks?
I love the poorly educated!!!

Kevin McCarthy: Paul Ryan playing with a head injury -- Jon Lovett
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