5@5: Is the small farmer boom doomed? | Long-term COVID-19 grocery store changes

Each day at 5 p.m. we collect the five top food and supplement headlines of the day, making it easy for you to catch up on today's most important natural products industry news.

May 18, 2020

2 Min Read
farmer feeding chickens

The small farmer boom is about to go bust

Small farmers found impressive alternative ways to sell their excess produce after restaurant needs fell through and farmers' markets sales diminished, but this sales model won't sustain them for long according to some. A new survey of small farmers shows that roughly 40% expect to lose a substantial amount of revenue from this upcoming harvest, and a third believe they will be out of business by the end of the 2020. Read more at The Counter


How the pandemic may change the way we grocery shop

Experts say that consumers will continue to seek out contactless approaches to shopping and checking out, making use of services including curbside pickup. Consumers are also likely to continue focusing on the merits of a local supply chain and opt to support more local businesses. And those employees who fulfill and bag online orders in stores are poised to become extremely valuable as retailers begin using them as brand ambassadors and suggestive sellers. Read more at CNBC


World Wildlife Fund tries to spark an indoor farming revolution

While best known for its work to save endangerd species, World Wildlife Fund has also been studying trends in agriculture to help make growing food more environmentally sustainable. This is what led the organization to study indoor farming as a solution, and it is now bringing together stakeholders, plant science experts, community groups, potential customers like grocery stores and more together to find the best way to make an indoor farming system work on a large scale. Read more at Fast Company


Booker renews push to phase out factory farming by 2040 after pandemic hits meatpacking plants

A bill introduced by Senator Cory Booker last December that targets multinational meatpacking operations is gaining new traction after meat plants nationwide continue to fail their workers and communities in terms of keeping them safe from COVID-19. In recent statement Booker says that "Our food system was not broken by the pandemic and it was not broken by independent family farmers. It was broken by large, multinational corporations like Tyson, Smithfield and JBS that, because of their buying power and size, have undue influence over the marketplace and over public policy." Read more at The Hill


Coronavirus to slow US meat production for months, CEO says

JBS is upping its safety procedures after several plant closures in April due to COVID-19 outbreaks, but CEO Andre Nogeira says that there is no way the company can produce enough meat for Americans because of these changes. Nogeira also stated that he is prepared to close more facilities should cases continue to increase among employees. Read more at The Wall Street Journal… 

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