Nebraska’s governor says it’s ‘vitally important’ to keep packing plants open
Coronavirus cases in Nebraska meat packing plants have increased over the past week. But Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts, in his daily COVID-19 news briefing, said he does not see a scenario where he would ask plants to close.
Ricketts says it’s vitally important to keep the food processors open.
“Can you imagine what would happen if people could not go to the store and get food? You want to talk about some of the protests that are going on right now? Think about how mad people were when they couldn’t get paper products–think about if they can’t get food,” Ricketts says.
He says the state is working closely with the packing plants to keep them open, “and doing everything we can to ensure the food supply chain, because we would have civil unrest if that was not the case.”
Nebraska Farm Bureau thanked Ricketts for his efforts to work with meat processors to protect employees and to keep plants running. The group says widespread closure of processing plants, even for limited periods of time, “could be devastating for farmers and consumers alike”.
AUDIO: Excerpt from Ricketts’ COVID-19 news briefing on Thursday