Food supply issues

Back in March, the coronavirus started triggering infection hotspots in and around meatpacking plants, sickening and killing workers. As local public health authorities pushed giant meat conglomerates to close infected facilities, industry executives warned that doing so was “pushing our country perilously close to the edge in terms of our meat supply,” as Kenneth M. Sullivan, CEO of Smithfield, the world’s largest pork producer, declared in a April 12 press release.

Covid-19

Rural communities are bracing for a looming recession caused by the coronavirus pandemic, expecting that it could devastate already shaky economies.

As the virus shuts down schools, factories, restaurants and other businesses, rural towns contend with a smaller tax base, less access to high-speed internet and growing strain among lenders.