Published April 14, 2020
We are pleased to present the first entry in the #COVIDBytes series
The food production sector is one of the key machines that continues to run during the COVID-19 crisis. However, many of the distribution channels, such as catering and outdoor food markets, have been closed, challenging the viability of many production chains and the livelihoods of some producers themselves. Changes in consumption patterns have led to decreased demand for certain products, encouraging farmers to seek alternative marketing channels. In this context, direct farm-to-fork marketing strategies may represent a win-win option for both parties.
The compilation below highlights some of the initiatives that have been created in the aim of bringing consumers and producers closer together, ensuring viable pathways for quality food to continue to arrive to our tables, in the process preventing food waste and helping those affected by the crisis.
- The Spanish Society for Organic Agriculture (SEAE) has created a map of the agroecological producers who are still selling their products during the COVID-19 crisis: https://www.agroecologia.net/listado-seae-apoyo-produccion-eco-covid19/
- The Gustum project, coordinated by local action groups in Catalonia, brings together diverse initiatives from local producers and retailers who are offering home delivery of their products:
- One of sectors that has been impacted the hardest is sheep and goat farming, since a significant share of their products are typically sold in restaurants. The hashtag #YoNoRompoLaCadena (“I don’t break the chain”) seeks to raise awareness amongst consumers in order to support local producers. The Andalusian Federation of Pure-Breed Goat Farmers is donating some of their production to the most vulnerable groups affected by the crisis. In a similar way, small cheese producers in Catalonia’s “Formatgers en confinement” (“Cheesemakers in lockdown”) have opened a virtual shop to sell their products directly to consumers: (https://www.lapaissa.cat/botiga/). Other farmers who are also offering home delivery of livestock products can be found at Camp Mallorqui (https://www.campmallorqui.es/) in Mallorca, and at the EA Group cooperative in Extremadura (https://tastingextremadura.com/cordero-pascua/) with the slogan “Esta Pascua comemos cordero” (“This Easter we eat lamb”).
The complete #COVIDBytes series:
0. Introduction (April 13)
1. COVIDByte #1 (April 14)
3. COVIDByte #3: Changes in Consumption Patterns (April 28)
4. COVIDByte #4: Impacts on prices (April 28)
6. COVIDByte #6: The Approach One health (May 11)