The coronavirus pandemic is having both a global and local impact on agriculture. North Dakota Department of Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring tells the Red River Farm Network the outbreak is having a direct impact on agricultural sales of all kinds. “It’s hard to sell livestock when you can’t have a gathering of more than 10 people. When trying to cull or market animals, you can’t get buyers together, have a market fully operating and have price discovery,” says Goehring. “That also goes for machinery and retirement auctions with large groups of people.” The virus is also having an impact on seasonal and temporary foreign labor. Goehring says solutions are being sought by USDA to help alleviate these issues. “We have made an email address available for people to directly respond to USDA and the Department of Labor. This gives farmer and ranchers an opportunity to tell the department what they’re dealing with and then a case number will be created.”
Subscribe to RRFN
Get a weekly digest from RRFN to stay up-to-date on all the latest news in agriculture.