California Farm Bureau Federation Highlights the Criticalness of Agricultural Work During COVID-19
CALIFORNIA - Federal and state governments have officially deemed agriculture as “critical infrastructure.” In light of this announcement, the California Farm Bureau Federation (CFBF) is doubling down on its commitment to California’s farmers, ranchers, and agricultural businesses, especially as the industry navigates Governor Gavin Newsom’s statewide stay-at-home order.
“As people who work in a sector defined as critical, farmers, ranchers, and people working in agricultural businesses recognize our special responsibility to maintain normal work schedules,” said CFBF President Jamie Johansson said. “We encourage local, state, and federal agencies to interpret the guidelines as broadly as practicable, to be sure everyone in agriculture can stay on the job, producing food and farm products during this crisis.”
Specifically, the CFBF is positioning itself as a key resource to California’s grower industry, working to answer questions, alleviate any confusion around this decisive action, and reassure agencies that it is committed to smoothing the production, marketing, and transportation of food and farm products.
“The state Office of Emergency Services has made it clear: People involved in agriculture, food production, distribution, and transportation of food or agricultural products—anyone working in the food supply chain—people in those critical jobs are allowed and should continue to show up for work,” Johansson clarified.
To ensure people working in agriculture can do their jobs safely, the CFBF has redoubled its work with employers to make sure they’re aware of the latest guidelines from health officials and government agencies, according to a press release. This includes County Farm Bureaus around California and CFBF.
“Based on the questions we’ve been receiving from farmers, we know they’re being diligent in having employees engage in sanitary practices,” Johansson noted. “That’s already a high priority for reasons both of food safety and employee health. Farmers take a number of steps on a regular basis to protect themselves, their employees, their families, and their crops.”
Johansson continued on the essential nature of our industry.
“County Farm Bureaus provide a critical local resource for farmers, ranchers, and people in agricultural businesses. County Farm Bureaus and those of us at CFBF will remain available to respond to our members and work with government agencies to assure continuity of critical food and agricultural activity,” he reflected.
AndNowUKnow will continue to report on the latest developments as they affect the fresh produce industry.