Ag News: Farm Labor with Border Closures and Ethanol Impact
**Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue announced a partnership between the USDA and the Department of Labor to help facilitate the identification of foreign and domestic workers who MAY be eligible to transfer to other U.S. ag sector employers to fulfill critical workforce needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Perdue says ensuring minimal disruption for our agricultural workforce during these uncertain times is a top priority for this administration.
He adds we will continue to work to make sure our supply chain is impacted as minimally as possible."
**Even as gas prices drop, fewer drivers are getting behind the wheel during this COVID-19 pandemic, and that’s eating into ethanol outlooks, with some ethanol plants considering closure.
With one ethanol leader saying the industry is in “dire straits” Senator Chuck Grassley took to Twitter acknowledging the issue, saying if oil companies receive a bailout, so should ethanol and biodiesel plants.
Concerns of waning ethanol demand could also push corn demand down in 2020.
**Travel restrictions intended to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus have led to canceled flights, reducing shipping options for California-grown foods.
With passenger flights reduced, perishable cargo such as fruits, vegetables, flowers, meats and dairy products will compete for space on aircraft with other commodities and express shipments.
Shipments carried on passenger planes complement shipments via ocean and air freight.