Farmers require PPE for themselves and their employees during daily operation as well as to satisfy Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) requirements where necessary. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the focus on the healthcare sector as well as a greater volume of use by the general public has created a shortage of personal protection equipment (PPE) in the agriculture sector.
A zombie walks into a bar and the bartender says, “We have a drink named after you. Want one?” The zombie nods and says, “Sure. Give me a Lindsey.” Now, a Zombie is a cocktail and not a beer, but I still stand by my joke.
Canada has seen a growing number of positive tests for COVID-19 among employees at meat processing facilities, which has resulted in slowdowns and closures. This has been most pronounced in Alberta where the Cargill plant in High River is to resume production May 4 following a two-week shutdown. In contrast, agri-food processors have fared much better. Just as seed plants, elevators and farm-to-export transportation links have weathered the pandemic remarkably well, grain-reliant food manufacturers have continued to function, even upping production to meet an aggressive surge in consumer demand.
To remain open for business during the COVID-19 pandemic, seed processing facilities have locked their doors. While they may be shut tight, they remain very much open for business and are adjusting to these pandemic protocols in the busy, sometimes stressful run up to spring seeding.
The farming industry is taking the COVID-19 pandemic seriously. Obviously, there’s a lot riding on the continued good health of the farm community and the uninterrupted production of food.
In January of this year, the Rural Municipalities of Alberta revealed energy companies owe a total of $173 million in unpaid municipal property taxes on wellsites. This added to the growing frustration of rural landowners over rental payment problems. Some have received requests from oil and gas companies to cut payments, while others have had compensation reduced by up to 50 per cent or halted completely without notice.
BY IAN DOIG • PHOTOS COURTESY OF UNIVERSITY OF MANITOBA PRESS A senior scholar at the University of Manitoba’s Asper School of Business, Paul D. Earl is the author of The Rise and Fall of United Grain Growers: Cooperatives, Market Regulation, and Free Enterprise. His extensive industry experience includes having worked for United Grain Growers […]