Trump orders meat plants to stay open
- Trump signed an executive order on Tuesday that compels slaughterhouses to remain open.
- This move by Trump is setting up quite the showdown between big packers and the unions and activists who are wanting to protect workers during this pandemic.
- Despite packing house closures, Trump said in his order, “such closures threaten the continued functioning of the national meat and poultry supply chain, undermining critical infrastructure during this national emergency.
- Environmental working group called this order a potential deal sentence.
- At least 20 workers in meat and food processing have died, and 5,000 meatpacking workers have either tested positive for the virus or were forced to self-quarantine.
- The White House decided to make this move amid estimates that as much as 80% of US meat production capacity could shut down.
- Dairy farmers continue to dump milk that can’t be sold to processors, broiler operations have been breaking eggs to reduce supplies, hogs are being euthanized, and some fruit and vegetables are rotting in fields amid labor and distribution disruptions.
- Low-income Americas have been waiting in long lines at food banks, that claim to have reported food shortages.
- When asked about the country’s food supply, Trump responded, “There’s plenty of supply.”
America’s mass hog cull begins with meat to rot in landfills
- The mass culling of America’s hog herd has begun as numerous shutdowns at processing plants have created a glut of hogs that farmers can no longer sustain.
- Starting today, about 13,000 pigs a day will be killed at a JBS slaughterhouse in Minnesota, according to US representative Collin Peterson. But instead of these cuts being turned into ham and bacon, the carcasses may be dumped in landfills or go to rendering plants.
- Estimated 160,000 hogs/day nationwide have to be euthanized.
- Peterson went on to say, “Clearly in the meat sector we are going to have shortages. What I worry about is people are going to find this out and they are going to be hoarding it and that will exacerbate the problem.”
Boxed beef continues to hit records
- On Tuesday, choice boxed beef ended the day at 330.82, up almost $19 for the day.
- Select box beef ended the day at 320.88, up $22.10 for the day.