May 2020 🐝 Food & Farming Policy News

How is COVID-19 affecting policy? We take a look from all angles.

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Dear Rebecca,

Welcome to the May 2020 edition of The Buzz. I hope that everyone is as well as can be during this time. Our policy team is working hard to inform you about the latest developments in state and federal policy, especially as it relates to the COVID-19 pandemic. Together, we’ve been advocating for policies that support small and mid-sized farms, support and strengthen local food systems, and assure that everyone in the Carolinas has access to healthy food and enough to eat.

We will continue to share the latest on important programs including aid under the federal Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP), developments at the North Carolina General Assembly, and alert you of opportunities when you can use your voice to make a difference! At the same time, we are strengthening relationships with allies in the sustainable agriculture, food security, and small business communities to build for positive, systemic change.

This month, we’re including a wide array of articles to keep you abreast of current policy issues. You’ll find further reads below on:

  • The devastating impact of COVID-19 on restaurants.
  • Issues faced by sustainable meat processors.
  • Data on how COVID-19 risks change based on your environment.
  • Two exciting pieces of federal legislation that would support small and mid-sized farms.

5f856726-128e-40b6-835c-5cd030e92afb.pngIn solidarity,

Nick Wood, CFSA Policy Director

If you value the work that CFSA provides, including this free newsletter, now is a great time to give to CFSA!

Until May 31, one of our amazing donors is matching all gifts to the CFSA fund, dollar-for-dollar, up to $10,000! Your gift will go twice as far to ensure we can continue advocating for local farms and food systems.


Here are the top reads from CFSA’s policy team

5c7b6b7a-10b2-4dc3-a3ff-fb1d476b2715.pngMatt Kneece, SC Policy Coordinator

Small Meat Processors Show Promise In COVID-19 Crisis

Every day, we see headlines reflecting how seriously the COVID-19 crisis is impacting every aspect of agriculture, and meat processing is no exception. From commercial giants like Tyson and Smithfield shuttering their doors to meatpacking workers protesting a lack of PPE and minimal social distancing rules, concerns about a potential meat shortage are everywhere.

Even here in South Carolina, this story from WIS News 10 illustrates how cattle farmers are being forced to sell at prices well below average, jeopardizing their revenue to finance crops for the year.

One bright spot, however, is the amazing amount of coverage that small-scale producers are receiving. This Huffington Post article is a great read on how local, resilient systems are a reliable alternative to complex, fragile, large-scale supply chains. As the crisis evolves, CFSA is working with our regional and national partners to protect small and very small operations. We’ll continue to share updates with you as they roll in.