We at OFW Law want to say thank you to the entire agriculture supply chain on National Agriculture Day. As we face the Coronavirus pandemic that is changing the dynamic of how Americans procure and interact with their food, we know that individuals are working tirelessly across the supply chain to ensure a safe and resilient food supply. Agriculture retailers are working to keep inputs stocked, farmers and ranchers are tending to their livestock and fields, grocery store employees are stocking shelves for endless hours and restaurants have changed their model to provide meals at home rather than in their store to maintain social distancing.
Access to food is a necessity to life. In this crisis, the agriculture and food supply chain has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) as an essential industry and workforce, to ensure “continuity of functions critical to public health and safety, as well as economic and national security.” It’s not only “farm” or “table” where the impact is essential, but everything in between. This includes transportation, international trade, food banks and countless other parts of this vital supply chain to ensure all Americans have access to safe and reliable agricultural goods.
It feels serendipitous that today is the 8th day since the President announced the “Coronavirus Guidelines for America,” which reminds me of Paul Harvey’s “So God Made a Farmer” speech (reinvigorated after a commercial during Superbowl XLVII) in which the 8th day is when “God made a farmer.” Regardless of religion, the sentiment leaves the reader understanding the value of a farmer’s dedication to feed the world. We celebrate National Agriculture Day every year in recognition of this dedication.
To the farmer who works all day, to the grocery store employee who is risking their health to ensure food is on the shelves for our families, to those distributing meals to hungry children no longer in school, we thank you. In the words of Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue, “do right and feed everyone.”
OFW Law is providing our clients with the latest information regarding the government response to the Coronavirus from the Congressional Stimulus Packages to USDA and FDA department changes. If you are seeking more information or assistance during this time of rapid mobilization by the U.S. government, please contact us.