Farmers and COVID-19 (+ 10-Min Survey: How Can CFSA Help Farmers)

+ Paycheck Protection Program, food safety and the coronavirus, & more

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CFSA's Grower's Toolbox
Dear Nahid,

I hope this edition of Grower’s Toolbox finds you and your family safe, healthy, and socially distanced. Here at CFSA, we’ve been busy doing everything we can to make sure our farmers have the support they need to navigate through this crisis. If you have not already done so, please visit our blog, to stay informed on programs and actions we hope will help you do that.

One program is the Paycheck Protection Program, which is part of the economic rescue package passed by Congress. Funding, provided in the form of a loan, can be used to cover payroll, interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities. Loans will be forgiven if employers use at least 75% of the loan to cover payroll costs, maintain the number of full-time employees as of Feb 15, 2020, and do not decrease salaries and wages more than 25% for any employee who made less than $100,000 in 2019.

How Can CFSA Better Support Farmers?

We’re increasing efforts to support farmers through COVID-19. The more we know about what you need, the better our ability to help address those needs. Will you help us understand the economic and production impacts of the pandemic for your farm?
Take Our 10-Minute Survey

If you have added on-farm pickups, home delivery, or online pre-orders to accommodate for social distancing, please contact Mary Beth, who is managing our “Where to Buy Local While Social Distancing” interactive map (below) to help consumers source local food.
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If you need help transitioning your operation to accommodate for new physical distancing measures, please contact Krista, CFSA Market Access Coordinator.

On behalf of everyone at CFSA, I would like to thank you, our farmers, for everything you’re doing to continue to bring fresh, healthy food to our tables. Please, stay SAFE!

17d23be7-04af-4c4a-9488-363af1015381.pngCheers,

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Karen McSwain, CFSA Associate Executive Director for Programs

PS – We strongly believe that #FarmersMarketsAreGroceryStores and are doing everything we can to keep them open. If yours has closed or is considering closing, see our policy team’s COVID-19 Farmers Market Advocacy Toolkit on what you can do.

ISSUES WITH PLANT GROWTH IN YOUR HIGH TUNNELS?
Farmers Adapting to Keep Up with COVID-19 Demand
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The COVID-19 pandemic has created a climate of unpredictability and inconsistency for millions around the globe and farmers are no exception. Yet, amid all the uncertainty, many growers at small farms are discovering new opportunities. As the supply of produce, eggs, meat, and other staples dwindle at grocery stores across the country, consumers are turning to their local farmers to feed their families.

Last week, we spoke with a few farmers in the Triangle-region of North Carolina who are rising to the challenge as they quickly adapt their business models to keep up with the demand. Continue reading over on our blog.