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5@5: Trump administration aims to cut farmer wages | Delivery apps reap profits, refuse to cap commissions

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.

April 15, 2020

2 Min Read

The Trump administration reportedly wants to cut farmer wages

House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and USDA chief Sonny Purdue are reportedly working together to lower pay rates for largely unprotected foreign agricultural workers. At the same time, somewhat ironically, the Trump administration is trying desperately to keep the producer end of the U.S. food system afloat by bringing more of these workers into the country under the "essential worker" status. Read more at Modern Farmer…  


It's time to delete your delivery apps

Food delivery apps are seeing more business than ever in the era of COVID-19, and it's become clear that their already-predatory practices have gotten far worse as restaurant owners become desperate to keep their businesses afloat. Most of these apps have refused to cap commission rates at 10% or 15%, and none of them have offered drivers pay raises or health care even as they continue to interact with consumers and restauranteurs alike. Read more at Food and Wine


Community gardens adapt to the pandemic

Community gardens offer fresh food access to low-income populations and allow volunteers to have some therapeutic time outdoors. It's no surprise, then, that the growing pandemic-related interest surrounding the U.S. food supply chain has led to an uptick in community garden volunteers. To grow as much food as possible, one of these operations, Sprout Nola, is having growers start seedlings off at home and then distributing them to community growers across New Orleans. Read more at The New York Times


Plastic bag bans suspended during coronavirus pandemic

Although numerous states and municipalities have banned retailers from providing free single-use plastic bags, the spread of coronavirus has triggered a step back. Many major grocery chains have prohibited shoppers from bringing in reusable bags for fear that the bags could carry the virus. Many jurisdictions are suspending the bans, as well. However, it's not clear if reusable bags could spread the virus—or if the new bags at the store could be contaminated. Read more at NPR


The backlash to sourdough has already started

People are upset about would-be bakers producing Instagram-friendly loaves of sourdough amid stay-at-home orders mainly because of the large quantities of flour needed to do so. Experts point out that there are ways to avoid waste throughout this process, including making a smaller starter or pausing it by putting it in the freezer in between baking projects. Read more at Kitchn

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