Farm Bureau highlights immediate issues facing agriculture
American Farm Bureau has released its first assessment of the impact on farmers and ranchers as the nation addresses the coronavirus pandemic.
President Zippy Duvall says AFBF has been in contact with administration officials about the challenges farmers and ranchers are facing.
“I’ve been on the phone with Ag Secretary Perdue conveying our concerns and all the concerns we’re hearing from our state farm bureaus, we’ve been in communication with the White House, and we’ve been in communication with congress and all levels of government that may have to do with issues that are facing or could face agriculture in the days to come,” he says.
Duvall says labor, supply chain issues, and possible price manipulation topped the list of immediate issues.
As for supply chain issues…”We want to make sure that the consumer is assured that there’s plenty of food out there and right now it’s just because their buying habits have changed and it’s the reason we’re seeing the vacancies on the shelf,” he says. “We really appreciate the people who are working so hard to stock those shelves.”
AFBF is also calling on the administration to find a safe measure to ensure H-2A workers can come to US farms and ranches this year. US agriculture depends on more than a quarter million H-2A workers each year.
Duvall also says maintaining stable and fair markets is especially critical now. He asked the USDA to monitor the situation as many livestock producers are concerned about market manipulation.