As restaurants close, farmers find new ways to feed people

April 7, 2020

Food & Wine magazine reports on how farmers are exploring alternative income streams with the majority of restaurants closed.

The stay-at-home orders that swept the country in March and effectively forced the closure of the country’s restaurant industry have translated to economic disaster, not only for restaurants, but for many of the farmers that supply them.

The article goes on to discuss the rise in Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) sales, “contactless drive-thru” markets, online sales platforms, and farmers markets now offering home delivery or pick-up services.

Oregon Tilth’s Director of Education and Advocacy, Sarah Brown, shared the success of our webinar on online sales platforms, with over 600 registrants in two days.

Now is a crucial moment for many farmers, who are about to or have just entered planting season. They are deciding what to plant, and how much to invest in farming when the future is so dim. But there are reasons for optimism. According to both Dhillon and Michael Hurwitz, director of the New York City Greenmarkets, even with social distancing measures in place, the markets have thrived and seen record-breaking sales. For many, the public’s interest in reconnecting with farmers and the food that they grow represents a silver lining.

Full article at Food & Wine

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