As the new coronavirus spreads throughout the Midwest and people’s behaviors change as a result, Michigan’s turkey farms are struggling to stay afloat.
Like most non-essential businesses in the state, many garden centers and greenhouses in West Michigan have been forced to close as part of continuing efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19.
Michigan’s food and agriculture industries and related workers are considered as “essential critical infrastructure” to ensure continued food security across the state under Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s stay-home executive order.
Following a request from Michigan Sen. Debbie Stabenow, the U.S. Government Accountability Office will investigate the integrity of the U.S. Department of Agriculture aid to farmers affected by the U.S. trade war with China.
News that the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement appears to be headed toward ratification comes as a positive for farmers across the country and especially in Michigan.
Dairy producers are struggling to make ends meet, and many dairy farmers have lost money for months or even several years straight. Jem-Lot Dairy’s Stephanie Schafer, who is also a district director with the Michigan Farm Bureau, said the situation is largely the result of low milk prices. Her farm keeps 300 dairy cows in Clinton County.
As the hunt for PFAS contamination has expanded into crops and livestock, it has revealed new food safety concerns related to the limited state-led testing system and lax federal standards.
Agricultural land values have remained relatively stable throughout most regions in Michigan, even though many farmers continue to face serious headwinds.
State Sen. Stephanie Chang says granting state driver’s licenses for undocumented immigrants is as much of an issue of economics and public health as it is about immigration.