COVID-19 Business Opportunities: Field To Plate
By Esosa Aihie
Farms, food producers and suppliers across the globe are adapting quickly and innovating to keep coronavirus stay at home whilst street markets are closed and labourers restricted from travelling to work in the fields.
The crisis has exposed the world’s reliance on international trade and on the huge number of seasonal workers who travel across borders to farms to help harvest ripened produce. It has also had a massive impact on complex supply, transport and distribution chains that usually bring food from farms to people’s tables.
Businesses are now going and busy online to sell their products which were temporarily shut because of the pandemic.
Wholesale centres now make daily home deliveries to urban consumers, who order online, after the global pandemic lockdown disrupted supply chains and left some farmers feeding their crops to cattle.
Middlemen are being taken out of the supply and distribution chain.
Restaurant owners and suppliers are also adapting to a new approach, through the direct sale of groceries and meal boxes to households and consumers.
For some suppliers, the challenge has been keeping up with demand for staples such as eggs, flour and pasta, which have flown off supermarket shelves as people stock up to eat at home.
Suppliers are turning to new pools of workers. In Europe, the priority’s to find seasonal workers to work on spring harvests.
Finding seasonal workers is a priority in Europe, where spring harvests are at risk because the usually vast armies of migrant labourers cannot leave home. Spain🇪🇸has allowed the unemployed to keep welfare payments and take farm jobs and also extended work permits for migrants.
France mobilised thousands of idle french workers to offset a shortfall of foreign labourers. Russia🇷🇺is considering the use prisoners to help in farms to cover the absence of Central Asian workers.
Germany, Britain and Ireland have eased restrictions to bring in trained workers from Romania and other EU🇪🇺states on charter flights with quarantine measures. The USA🇺🇸has exempted migrants from a temporary curb on immigration during the crisis.
Nigeria🇳🇬is making identity cards to enable farm workers move freely during lockdown after many were stopped by police. Iraq🇮🇶exempted farm workers from curfew measures & allowed farmers to move equipments round the country for harvest.
Brazil’s🇧🇷toll-road operator distributed over a thousand food & hygiene kits a day to truck drivers to keep transport link running smoothly. Kenya🇰🇪sent their export products to Europe by ship due to limited air freight capacity.
Hmm finding opportunities in unlikely places and approaches🐵✅