This is what happens when the government takes full control and puts a country on lockdown. The cure cannot be worse than the virus itself, and it is.
Amid lockdowns and stay-at-home orders, businesses and industries across America are suffering from the Covid-19 shutdown. Idaho Potato farmers are no different.
Despite the growing demand in grocery stores, potato prices have plummeted in the last few weeks due to social distancing guidelines and a lack of demand in restaurants and the food industry. Just weeks prior, the industry was looking at the best prices in recent memory and even projections for summer shortages.
The cost for a 50 pound carton of restaurant-grade potatoes in the Twin Falls and Burley district was between $22 and $23 on March 13, but had dropped to somewhere between $10 and $12 by April 16.
Some of the farmers have so much extreme surpluses that they’ve began dumping potato crops, and some of the dairy farmers are even feeding their potatoes to the cattle.
It’s really alarming to think that we have nearly 1 million homeless in America, and yet we’re destroying food because no one is buying it? Why isn’t the American government working to gather this excess food and use it to send to food banks and shelters across America? What the hell is truly going on here?
“I heard about the farmers dumping the potatoes through a local farmer or rancher who I know here,” Page told AccuWeather in a Skype interview. “And it was heartbreaking to see, you know just seeing this huge pile of potatoes that, you know they didn’t have a market for. So that compelled me and a group of people here to act.”
Using the advantage of a small town and her history of community outreach, Page organized a 25-person “potato rescue team” to help gather the dumped potatoes and bring the spuds to those who need food in the Hailey and Ketchum, two towns in Blaine County, Idaho, about 160 miles east of Boise.
“(I) felt it was time to get a group of people together and mobilize quickly to get these potatoes to people who need them,” Page said.
Her volunteer group worked under sunny blue skies on Saturday as the temperature rose to 63 degrees. She documented the day’s events on social media and said “it was an amazing community effort” that came together for the good of others. And the perfect potato-rescuing weather continued on Monday, with temperatures in the mid-60s again and people coming to pick up the “free potatoes” and “broken taters,” as a photo she posted on social media showed. Prior to that image, she shared a series of photos showing volunteers loading up trucks with hundreds of potatoes to be hauled away.
“It really, you know, pulled on our heartstrings to know that these small family farms are being affected by the pandemic, and that they can’t get their food out to their traditional markets,” Page said. The end result was 10 vehicles fully loaded with the spuds: seven pick-up trucks, two SUVs and a dump truck. With permission from local government, she set up areas for residents to pick up potatoes.
America must open, and it must open now. Futher delays will not only continue to destroy a weakened supply chain, but will send American into another great depression which will cost us millions of lives.
Your thoughts on Americans farmers having to destroy excess crops, chickens, and pigs?
You can read more from our friends at AccuWeather.com
We deserve the next potato famine… For letting our guards down.
We must do better, next time if we get one.