The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted supply chains across markets, few more visibly than the food industry. Between “panic-buying” shoppers sweeping store shelves clean and challenges interrupting production and distribution, the exponential spike in grocery demands has come concurrent with new circumstances affecting supply.
While consumers may associate these disruptions mostly with changes at their local grocery store, the pandemic has also presented obstacles to those working behind the scenes. But like so many of the essential workers lauded for their contributions to keeping the country healthy and safe during these unprecedented times, independent farmers and ranchers also have risen to the occasion, continuing their work despite challenges brought on by the current health crisis.
Where sales are soaring
Nearly every section of the grocery store has seen a remarkable increase in sales, but food staples such as fresh meat and produce are among the categories seeing the greatest growth. According to IRI, total grocery sales are up by $12 billion compared to last year, with fresh meat alone accounting for $105 billion in sales.
The key to keeping sales steady — if not increasing — during these difficult times starts at the source. Just as independent farmers’ and ranchers’ livelihoods depend on a functioning supply chain, a successful supply chain depends on agricultural workers, too.
Health remains a priority
That’s why the industry leading Tyson Fresh Meats Team recognizes the workers who, at every part of the supply chain, continue to keep food moving from the farm and ranches, to the store to the dinner table. As the U.S. government has recently prioritized support for meat and poultry processors, taking steps to maintain a safe and healthy workplace has been paramount.
From symptom screenings for all team members before every shift, to providing mandatory protective facial coverings to all team members, to a range of social distancing measures including physical barriers between workstations and in break rooms, and more, Tyson Fresh Meats has put in place a host of protective steps that meet or exceed CDC and OSHA guidance to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and provide the country with a reliable meat supply while keeping agricultural workers safe.
To learn more about the Tyson Fresh Meats Team’s continued efforts to keep independent farmers and ranchers healthy and the grocery supply chains thriving, visit www.thebeefandporkexperts.com.
This post is sponsored by Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc.